Big Enough

PBS Premiere: June 28, 2005Check the broadcast schedule »

Film Update

'Big Enough is a record of a particular moment in time in the lives of those who appear in the documentary. Tragically,
Anu Trombino, whose indomitable spirit pervades the film, died in late May 2005. It is some comfort that Big Enough will endure as a legacy to her magnetic presence and enable so many people to meet this truly remarkable woman."

-- Filmmaker Jan Krawitz


Mark and Anu TrombinoMark Trombino has a two-year old daughter, Priya, who has the same type of dwarfism as her parents. Mark's wife, Anu, died on May 25, 2005 of injuries suffered in a car accident.

Len Sawisch
Photo: Joelle Sawisch

Len and Lenette Sawisch are living and working in Lansing, Michigan. Daughter Joelle is the president of the Disability Awareness and Education student group at Ferris State University. Because of his daughter's "discovery" of the disability movement and his own participation in "Big Enough," Len is "flirting with coming out of retirement for another decade or so of advocacy work."

Photo: Karla and John LizzoKarla and John Lizzo are living and working in southern New Jersey. They have decided not to have children.

Photo: Ron Roskamp and Sharon Ostendorf
Photo: Alisha and Andrew Roskamp

Ron and Sharon Roskamp (now Sharon Ostendorf) divorced shortly after filming was completed. They both continue to live and work in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Their daughter, Alisha, is in high-school and their son, Andrew, recently graduated from the University of Michigan.


Jan KrawitzIn May 2004, I was one of six filmmakers selected to show my work as part of the Southern Circuit Independent Film Tour. We were invited to appear with our films in seven cities around the South. Before embarking on the tour, I had screened Big Enough with several festival audiences and at the national convention of Little People of America. The Southern Circuit presented an opportunity to engage in a dialogue about Big Enough with non-specialized community viewers, for whom the film was intended.

I showed the film in four states: Virginia, South Carolina, North Carolina and Mississippi. Before each screening of Big Enough, I showed a short film I had completed in 1990 called Mirror, Mirror, a 17-minute film about women and body image. I had selected Mirror Mirror as the short because I hoped that its focus on body image would provide a provocative context for Big Enough. The audience in a classroom at Sweet Briar College in Virginia was entirely female. The attendance was small (about 30 people), but the discussion was informed by insightful questions and observations. One student recognized that Big Enough put an interesting spin on the laments of the "average" women featured in Mirror Mirror.

Before another screening in South Carolina, I introduced myself to a dwarf woman and her average-sized mother in the audience and learned that they had seen Little People (1982), my earlier film about dwarfism. This group laughed a lot, even at some of the subtleties that had eluded other audiences. Everyone stayed for the duration of the post-screening discussion and participated in a lively dialogue that transcended the specific subject matter of the films. The comments of the dwarf woman amplified the viewing experience for everyone present.

Towards the end of another screening in Mississippi, a woman began talking about her youngest (grown) daughter, who is a dwarf. Her daughter has chosen to avoid interacting with other little people, and her parents shared their frustration about this with the audience. After the screening, several members of the community, including the parents of the dwarf daughter joined us for a drink and more conversation. It was a perfect example of how a film shown in a community context can connect people who would otherwise have little opportunity to do so.

I often compare filmmaking to the proverbial tree falling in the forest. One never knows if anyone is listening. Touring with Big Enough and Mirror Mirror reassured me that the themes of these films were understood in the way that I had hoped. The Southern Circuit provided a unique opportunity to make a direct connection with that theoretical audience that hovers in the background during the process of making a film.

— Jan Krawitz, May 2005