Directed by Tiffany Hsiung
THE APOLOGY follows the personal journeys of three former “comfort women” who were among the 200,000 girls and young women kidnapped and forced into military sexual slavery by the Imperial Japanese Army during World War II. Some 70 years after their imprisonment in so-called “comfort stations”, the three “grandmothers”—Grandma Gil in South Korea, Grandma Cao in China, and Grandma Adela in the Philippines—face their twilight years in fading health. After decades of living in silence and shame about their past, they know that time is running out to give a first-hand account of the truth and ensure that this horrific chapter of history is not forgotten. Whether they are seeking a formal apology from the Japanese government or summoning the courage to finally share their secret with loved ones, their resolve moves them forward as they seize this last chance to set future generations on a course for reconciliation, healing, and justice.
Tiffany Hsiung is an award-winning filmmaker based in Toronto. Her approach to storytelling is driven by the relationships she builds with people. Since 2009, Hsiung has been documenting the lives of survivors of military sexual slavery during World War II, inflicted by the Japanese Imperial Army, for her first feature-length film, THE APOLOGY. For the past six years, Hsiung has been advocating in communities and universities across North America for the grandmothers (survivors known as “comfort women”), as they fight for justice, by sharing their stories. Her most recent presentation at the United Nations in New York brought to light one of history’s greatest and unresolved injustices on the world stage for human-rights issues. Hsiung’s work is grounded in cross-cultural and intergenerational themes and is intended to inspire younger generations and viewers to learn about their own culture—and social responsibility—in the global community.