Hertz has always mixed his interests in the secular and religious, and wanted this film “to include a variety of perspectives that you would never really encounter in any other environment. It is the extraordinary group of people in this film that makes it unique.” His interest in pre-war Jewish history was fueled by the relationship with his grandmother who piqued his interest by telling stories of fantastic personalities she knew growing up in Poland before the war.
Feeling an affinity for the Jewish history of that period, Hertz started his journey as a filmmaker: “I decided to start conducting interviews about a subject that usually gets ignored when people talk about the 1920’s and 1930’s in Europe -- the beauty in their lives. You can see in their eyes that they experienced something beautiful when they were young. It colors their entire personalities.” Hertz spent his last 4 years making this film.
In 1986 his life took a new turn when he was invited to Hollywood to edit Delta Force, starring Lee Marvin and Chuck Norris. This movie launched his U.S. career and Hollywood became his new home. In 1987 Jakubowicz became Vice President in charge of creative post-production for Canon Films, a position he held until 1990. This position allowed him to interact and work with major directors and foremost productions, including Andrei Konchalovsky’s Shy People, Tobbe Hopper’s Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2 and Invaders From Mars, and Barbet Schroedder’s Barfly. During those years he supervised all aspects of creative post-production on the entire Canon catalogue.
When asked about LIFE IS STRANGE he says: “When Isaac showed me the footage of the interviews I knew that I will be facing a tremendous challenge in finding the proper illustrations and also bringing the movie to a viewable length. However, the stories of those people are the stories of my grandparents as well, and listening to them took me on my own personal emotional journey. I could not pass such an opportunity to pay tribute to the memories of a family I barely had a chance to know. I made this film with the hope that my grand children and their children will one day watch it and learn about their roots.”
Sam was born and raised in Miami Beach, Florida and currently lives in Israel with his wife and 3 children. He got involved in this project “because growing up I was always fascinated by Holocaust survivors, stories about their past and what enabled them to succeed in their lives. As Isaac and I each approach the age of 40, and knowing one another for about 35 of those 40 years, I think going through the process of making this film allowed us to better appreciate some aspects of our own childhood and gain a deeper understanding of why we have always been so intrigued by the stories of people who grew up and lived so many years before us.” Sam and Isaac are childhood friends.
In 2010 Zuev entered the "real film school" referring to his work in the cutting room with mentor and renowned film editor Alain Jakubowicz. About their team effort on LIFE IS STRANGE Zuev says, "I approached this project prepared to take on a significant technical challenge. What I didn't expect was that this would become such a reflective and educational journey." Between working on projects with Jakubowicz, Zuev produces, shoots and edits videos for clients while playing the French sport of pétanque around the world.
In mid- 1990’s, Guirao moved to Los Angeles where he began composing with renowned record producer, composer and lyricist Mike Piccirillo. Together, they produced most of the songs and a soundtrack for Tom Hanks-directed movie “That Thing You Do.” Guirao launched his solo career as a performing artist and producer under the name of Jean Michel Danton and started ongoing collaboration with Artie Ripp (Billy Joel’s producer), Motown legend musician Denny Randell and Marc Brickman (show designer for Pink Floyd, Nine Inch Nails etc.) Guirao developed a crowd funding music record company named “My Online Music Label” which is an innovator in the music recording industry. His latest movie scoring credits include “Bad Trip,” The Shroud” and “Life Is Strange.”