Twin Sisters Mia and Alexandra in a museum with giant wind-up teeth.
Where Are They Now?

Update on Twin Sisters Mia and Alexandra from the California Mom

October 20, 2014 by Craig Phillips in Where Are They Now?

We have an exclusive update on the two twin girls featured in Twin Sisters (the film by Mona Friis Bertheussen premieres on PBS tonight, Monday, October 20, at 10 pm; check local listings), from someone who would know: the mother of one of the girls. Angela Hansen, who lives in Sacramento where she’s raising Mia, now aged 11, e-mailed us with some anecdotes about their lives more recently.  After you watch the film, come back here to read more about what Mia and her Norwegian-based twin sister Alexandra have been up to since the filming stopped. [Read more about the film and their story in The New York Times.]

Angela writes:

On if the girls have seen each other again:

Since the film was produced the girls have been able to see each other a few more times.  We went to Norway for Christmas in 2012 when the girls were 9 years old. We really wanted them to be able to spend a Christmas together while they were young. Mia was very excited to have a snowy Christmas. She went sledding and ice skating with Alexandra, they built a snowman, played in the snow and had a lot of fun together.  Mia even went to school with Alexandra for a few days.  I also became addicted to a wonderful Norwegian spread called Nugatti Crunchy.  (I’d had some the summer of 2011 when we were in Fresvik, and had even more during Christmas 2012. Since it is so delicious I bought a few containers to bring home.) [Editor’s note: Angela also told us she’s now worried that this tasty product may be discontinued.]

Then the girls got to see each other in Sweden in February 2014.  They were on a popular talk show called Skavlan.  They got to see each other again in May 2014 for the Norwegian Emmys (Gullruten).  It was exciting for them to go on stage with Mona and Hal to accept the award for Best Documentary.  They also presented the award for Best Children’s Program.

In June 2014 we met Alexandra and her family in Greece for a vacation.  It was nice for all of us to relax and visit in beautiful Skopelos, Greece.  The Hauglums will be coming to visit us next March. We are excited about their upcoming trip and can’t wait to see them again!  Our families are very close and get along very well.  Wenche and I are like sisters, and Andy and Sigmund are great buddies.

Being in the film has not changed our daily lives.  We are just regular people!  We work, go to school, and hang out with friends and family.

On whether the girls will be seeing more of each other:

It’s hard to say if the girls will see each other more in the future.  It’s not easy for our families to see each other considering the cost of travel between California and Norway.  Another issue is time off work and school.  One of the main reasons we agreed to do this documentary was to provide the girls more opportunities to see each other. It worked out great this year because we got 2 unexpected trips to Sweden and Norway.  The girls [use] Face Time every weekend but there is nothing like seeing each other in person.

The twin girls as infants, with American mother Angela at right.
The twin girls as infants, with American mother Angela at right.

On how their language skills are improving:

Mia has learned a few more Norwegian words and phrases from Alexandra. And Alexandra is amazing now with her English!  She has learned a lot more English in the last few years.

On if she’s nervous about the show airing on national television:

We are excited for the film to air on PBS!  I am curious to find out what people think about the film.  I hope they will be understanding and supportive, but you never know how people will respond.

Learn more about the film Twin Sisters here.

Craig Phillips

Craig is the digital content producer for Independent Lens, based in San Francisco. He is a film nerd, cartoonist, classic film poster collector, wannabe screenwriter, and owner of/owned by cats.