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The Boston Globe

Lifestyle

Award-winning filmmaker finds the subject he was born to

When Joshua Seftel , an award-winning indie filmmaker and a nice Jewish boy, casts around for a project, he looks for a subject that will help him either repair the world (his 1992 documentary about Romanian orphans spurred thousands of adoptions); or make people laugh (his 2008 film, “War, Inc.,” satirized the outsourcing of war); or guarantee a payday (Seftel has directed commercial work for Liberty Mutual, among others).

Minus the moneymaking, Seftel’s decision to film conversations with his 76-year-old mom fell right in his sweet spot. “My dad passed away [in 2009], and my sisters and I worried that she was isolated,” said Seftel, a Tufts University graduate and former longtime Somerville resident, whose work has appeared on PBS, HBO, A&E, Bravo, and Showtime.

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