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Film / Three Identical Strangers

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Three Identical Strangers is a 2018 documentary directed by Tim Wardle about the lives of David Kellman, Bobby Shafran, and Eddy Galland: identical triplets separated at birth and adopted by three different families with no knowledge that there were other siblings.

A chance encounter reunites the brothers when they are nineteen years old. Then it gets complicated.

Provides examples of:

  • Broken Ace: Eddy was talented, popular and loved by everyone. When Bobby went to college he was lovingly greeted by students who mistook him for Eddy. However, Eddy developed mental health issues as a result of being separated at birth from his brothers and having tests performed on him and took his life at the age of 33.
  • Coordinated Clothes: The triplets did this often during their first burst of fame, and are apparently prone to doing this by pure coincidence.
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  • Driven to Suicide: After years of dealing with mental health issues, Eddy ends up committing suicide when David ends up leaving the trio.
  • Foreshadowing: There are several early hints about one of the darker twists of the story. Most are verbal (i.e., the characters hint at what's to come), but one is visual. Notice how only two of the triplets are present during the interviews.
  • Long-Lost Relative: The three brothers, as well as Paula Bernstein and Elyse Schein, twin sisters also reunited later in life, who were Separated at Birth as part of the same study.
  • Mistaken Identity: The story begins when Bobby arrives at his college campus and everyone seems to know him and calls him Eddy.
  • Same-Sex Triplets: David, Bobby, and Eddy are all men.
  • Separated at Birth: The triplets, and as many as 6-8 other sets of multiples, according to one of the research assistants involved in the study.