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A hero’s journey through therapy

Everyone knew who high-jumper Patrik Sjöberg was, but nobody knew what he had really been through. Thomas Reckmann, journalist and former elite runner, has made a film about Patrik in therapy.

Since publishing his highly acclaimed book ’What You Didn’t See’, where Patrik talks about how he was for many years the victim of sexual abuse by his trainer, who was also his stepfather, he has been involved in issues concerning child abuse. 

Against this background, Thomas Reckmann met with Patrik to discuss an idea for a film. The two have known each other since the 1980s, when they were both athletes.

“I didn’t just want to interview him, but had the idea of therapy sessions. Patrik was positive to making a documentary and after some discussion he was ready to give it a try,” says Thomas.

During his career, Patrik Sjöberg had never seen a need for psychological counselling, but now sees the benefit of therapy.

“It has been really hard, but I now understand that some things I have done are the result of things I have experienced. Thanks to the therapy, I can now see more clearly why things have turned out the way they have. Now that I can see what I get from these conversations, then I understand that I should have done this thirty years ago.”​

Many things must fall into place if an idea is to become a real film project, not least financing, and backers have included SVT and Lindholmen Science Park.

“It is very important to find support for documentaries, and financing is often needed from many different parties.

skarmavbild_2017-10-13_kl._15.52.12.pngThe documentary will now be made available to an international audience, which will include a screening at the IDFA film festival in Amsterdam in November.

“It is one of the largest documentary film festivals in the world, so it will be interesting to see what it can lead to,” says Thomas Reckmann.



Watch Thomas Reckmanns' documentary ’Patrik Sjöberg i terapi’ (Patrik Sjöberg in therapy) on SVT Play

On behalf of the City of Gothenburg, Lindholmen Science Park works to support development and innovation in gaming, films, TV and moving images. To achieve this we collaborate with production companies, suppliers, film and media workers, industry organizations and other relevant players.