Anita Dittman’s story is unlike that of any other Holocaust survivor.
Abandoned by her atheist father at a young age and raised by her Jewish mother in 1930s Germany, she gained faith in Jesus Christ after attending a Christian church service when she was six years old.
But her belief in Jesus didn’t matter to the Nazis, who forced her to labor in a canning factory with her mother. Eventually Anita and her mother were split up, and Anita was hauled off to a forced labor camp. Not only did she escape once, but after she was recaptured, she escaped a second time.
She miraculously survived the bombing of Dresden despite being caught in the middle of a street when it occurred. She survived a stay in a Nazi hospital, where a nurse tried to kill her through neglect. She overcame a gruesome leg wound to walk across Germany and Czechoslovakia in a desperate attempt to reach the camp where her mother had been detained and find out if her mother was still alive.
Now a great-grandmother living in Minnesota, Dittman still shares her story of survival, and she always credits Jesus with pulling her through.
The popular CBN television show “The 700 Club” aired a feature in May focused on her survival through the Holocaust, her salvation at a young age, and the continuing role of faith in her life ever after. The package featured a moving interview with Dittman herself.
“[Jesus] said, ‘Let the little children come unto me, because theirs is the kingdom of heaven, and lest ye become like little children, you cannot enter the kingdom of heaven,'” Dittman said during the CBN package. “It takes that kind of a faith. I have an awesome God. I am not awesome, He is.”
Dittman tells the full story of her youth, conversion, imprisonment, multiple escapes and journey to find her mother in her memoir, “Trapped in Hitler’s Hell,” as well as the documentary film of the same name.
Now WND is taking this incredible story one step further. George Escobar, vice president of WND Films, is teaming up with director Ken Carpenter to create a feature film based on “Trapped in Hitler’s Hell.” In fact, WND CEO Joseph Farah handpicked Dittman’s story to serve as the subject of WND’s first-ever major motion picture.
It’s a timely story that offers plenty of lessons for us in our present age. All the critical issues young Anita faced in the 1930s and ’40s are resurfacing today. Fake news is being pushed, just like Nazi propaganda in the days of old. Jews are once again facing persecution, and now Christians are as well. People are trading away liberty for a false sense of security, just as Germans did immediately before Hitler rose to power. And faith in God is once again being tossed aside as irrelevant or used as a weapon to silence believers.
Escobar and his team have devoted lots of time and resources over the past two years to crafting the best story possible. But movie-making is an expensive endeavor, and WND is now seeking help obtaining funds for production.
To that end, WND has set up a GoFundMe page to raise $120,000. This will pay for legal expenses, business operations, marketing plans and materials (promo reels, websites, posters and press kits) as well as pre-production budgeting, scheduling and location scouting.
After this preliminary work is done, the film can be pitched to investors who will be able to supply the money necessary to begin production and filming. According to the GoFundMe page:
“The math is simple. If 2 percent of our WND audience of 6-8 million monthly visitors each donates $10 (that’s less than two cappuccinos, or lattes, or mochas from Starbucks), we’ll reach our film investor package goal of $120,000. If 10-15 percent of our audience donate, we can bypass the investors altogether, and make the movie immediately. Wouldn’t that be something?”
This movie has already been in development for two years, with research, scripting and storyboarding already completed. The money raised on GoFundMe will be used to continue the pre-production process and pitch the movie to investors.
Escobar believes it is critical that this film gets made.
“If we forget our history, ignore our mistakes… we will suffer greatly by repeating them,” he said on the GoFundMe page.
So far, $3,000 of the $120,000 goal has been raised. Those interested in making a donation to help WND tell the incredible true story of Anita Dittman may donate here.