James Babanikos Comments on Impact of his 2009 Film “Somewhere Beyond”
James Babanikos, University of Florida College of Journalism and Communications Telecommunication professor, was quoted in “The Better Way to Support Rape Victims: Put Their Needs First” published in The Guardian on March 13.
The article focuses on Gretchen Casey, now a victim services advocate at the state attorney’s office in Gainesville, Florida, and the mental repercussions she has dealt with since being raped in college. The article highlights restorative justice as a better approach to dealing with sexual violence. This practice can include bringing the accuser and the accused together in a dialogue to discuss the impact of a crime and settle on a plan to make amends.
After grappling with the emotional aftershocks of failing to achieve the victim-offender dialogue she desired, Casey turned her story into a screenplay and contacted Babanikos to make it into a film.
The resulting film, “Somewhere Beyond,” premiered in 2009, and, when it did, Babanikos noticed a change come over Casey: “I could almost feel her sigh of relief at this chapter of her life finally being over.”