Twins Separated at Birth, Meet Each Other for the First Time After 54 Years
Inspired by the documentary “Three Identical Strangers,” Michele Mordkoff and Allison Kanter discover they are twins and have an emotional reunion on camera. The short film premiered on The Atlantic in 2018:
Three Identical Strangers is a shocking watch. Tim Wardle’s documentary, released earlier this year, tells the story of three 19-year-old boys who discover they are identical triplets, separated at birth and adopted by different families. But the revelations don’t end there. As it turns out, the boys were unwittingly part of an unethical scientific study conducted by their adoption agency, Louise Wise Services. The late psychologist Dr. Peter Neubauer designed the study so that when newborn twins or triplets were admitted to the agency, dozens were separated and placed in families of varying socioeconomic backgrounds. Under the guise of monitoring their emotional development, Neubauer studied the separated twins periodically throughout their childhoods. The official goal of the study was never disclosed, and no one involved was ever informed of their participation. Three Identical Strangers raises disturbing questions about identity, nature versus nurture, and the moral boundaries of science.
Just a month after the film’s theatrical release, Wardle was contacted by Lisa Belkin, a journalist who had previously investigated the controversy around Louise Wise Services. Belkin said that a 54-year-old woman from New Jersey, Michele Mordkoff, had seen Three Identical Strangers, recognized the name of the adoption agency, and been inspired to explore her birth parents’ history as a result. As a part of this process, Mordkoff took a DNA test. She discovered she had a “close family match” with a woman living in Calabasas, California. It was her twin sister, Allison Kanter.
When Allison and Michele decided to meet for the first time, Wardle was there with his film crew. [source]