From Gulfport to Budapest to Hollywood

Professor Peter Hargitai at home in Gulfport.

Professor Peter Hargitai at home in Gulfport.

The documentary that began as a labor of love for retired English professor and inaugural Gulfport poet laureate Peter Hargitai is now shortlisted for two Hollywood International Independent Documentary Awards. “Daughter of the Revolution,” is a finalist for Best Feature and for Best Director for Tunde Talás.

Talás’s screenplay for “Daughter of the Revolution” is based on Hargitai’s writings in his attempt to make sense of  the horrors he witnessed as a child in his native Hungary during the 1956 Hungarian Revolution and his family’s daring escape from the war-torn country. The film also reflects on the healing power of art and an artist’s responsibility to history, while paying tribute to the schoolgirls who became freedom fighters. Animated scenes from Hargitai’s book are woven into the narrative and bring history to life.

“I was able to revisit my trauma by writing about it. After witnessing man’s inhumanity to man, I needed to try to regain my faith in humanity,“ says Hargitai. “I chose to tell my story through the eyes of a fourteen-year-old girl who became a freedom fighter so these girls are never forgotten.”

To mark the anniversary of the revolution, Hargitai traveled to Budapest last year with his son to take part in the filming.

Hargitai will be headed to Hollywood for the awards ceremony on March 24, 2018, where “Daughter of the Revolution” will be screened for audiences. The documentary has been shown locally at the University of Tampa and the Gulfport Public Library.



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