My grandpa always said that if something was worth doing, then it was worth doing right. That's why I decided to ride my bike across Germany in the middle of the winter to retrace his route as a WWII Prisoner of War, 75 years after he was there. Driving from town to town in the spring to smell the flowers at each stop didn't feel like the right way, but biking long, lonely stretches of frozen rural Germany did.
It all started with a slip of paper. For him, it was a draft card and for me, it was the note that listed all of the camps my grandpa had been marched to during WWII as an American Prisoner of War. It was a story that he never spoke about. Nearly ten years after his death, I found the pieces he left behind, and I couldn't put them down until I knew every detail. The plan was simple: retrace my grandpa's journey as a Prisoner of War through Germany on bicycle in order to meet the side of him that I never knew. I guess it sounded a lot more simple when I decided to do it.
How to See the Film
Right now, we are showing Dear Sirs at film festivals across the country and will begin community screenings in January 2022! If you or your organization are interested in hosting a screening (in-person OR virtual) please go to our screenings page for more information.
We are a small team working to share this film and we are grateful for every bit of support we receive. Our film is a fiscally sponsored project of the International Documentary Association (IDA), 501(c)(3) nonprofit arts organization. Contributions in support of the film are payable to IDA and are tax-deductible as allowed by law.
To make a tax-deductible donation to the film, please click the link below to access the film's page hosted by the International Documentary Association.
Mark is an expedition-based documentary filmmaker and writer from Southwestern Wyoming where he tells stories from off the beaten path. Mark founded Burning Torch Productions in 2014 as a nimble production company to focus on character-driven stories from the backcountry and backroads of the world. His films have played at international festivals, on national PBS, and screening tours around the world. Prior to making films full-time, Mark managed the Episodic Storytelling program at Sundance Institute. Mark has an MFA in Producing for TV and Film from the University of Southern California and an MA in Communication and Journalism from the University of Wyoming.
Carrie McCarthy is a scientist turned producer who got her start working as a scientific film consultant. During her time in academia, Carrie was awarded a grant from the National Science Foundation to fund her research, which has been published in several peer-reviewed journals and presented at conferences worldwide. Under the shingle of Burning Torch Productions, Carrie and Mark co-produce documentaries, feature-length, and episodic content. Carrie is a hands-on producer who believes that being on the ground in the trenches is the only way to ensure the integrity of the project. She is driven by her endless curiosity to hunt down engaging stories with a unique perspective. Carrie has a PhD in Materials Chemistry from the University of Southern California.