Swiss Film Tells Feminist Story With Missouri Ties

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COLUMBIA - A Swiss crew worked on a documentary Thursday in Columbia. The movie is about University of Missouri alumna Iris Von Roten, a feminist writer in Switzerland.

The movie called "Verleibtes Fiende," or "Enemies in Love" also shot in Fulton on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Von Roten went overseas to the U.S. in 1948 and studied at MU for one year. She started to write her most famous book "Frauen im Laufgitter, Offene Worte zur Stellung der Frau" (Women in the Playpen, Plain Words about the Situation of Women) at Ellis Library. Her book was controversial in Switzerland, bringing hatred rather than admiration.

"She was one of the most hated women in Switzerland at the time, because her ideas were very revolutionery and wild. In France, they had Simone de Beauvoir, the very famous feminist. She is like our Simone de Beauvoir," said Mona Petri, the heroine of the film.

Steven Buehler is a senior studying theatre and political science at MU. He played the role of Louis, Iris's boyfriend when she studied in Columbia. Buehler said playing the role of a student sixty years ago was really a special experience.

"For example, I had a line like, 'I have ham and fresh pickle on my bicycle, come and picnic with me.' And I was like we don't go on picnics any more," said Buehler.

The filming will continue shooting at some other places in Columbia, including Jesse Hall and Missouri Theatre Center for the Arts.

The film director Werner Schweizer said the film is only scheduled to show in Switzerland, Germany and France now. But he was looking forward to bringing the movie back to Mid-Missouri residents through the "True/False Film Festival".