A documentary about Anne Frank was secretly screened in Iran, a country whose leaders have openly questioned and denied the Holocaust.
“Anne Frank: Then and Now” was shown to film students and a professor in a provincial theater. The film did not have government approval, and viewers risked being imprisoned for attending the event, Deadline reported.
The Arabic-language documentary film chronicles the lives of eight Palestinian girls and two Israeli girls during the 2014 Israel-Gaza conflict as they try out for the role of Anne Frank. It was directed by Croatian filmmaker Jakov Sedlar and produced by Branko Lustig, a Croatian Holocaust survivor who won an Oscar for producing “Schindler’s List.”
“Tell your friends about Anne Frank,” Sedlar, who attended the screening, told the Iranian students. “Try to find details of her life; try to learn something about the Holocaust.”
Frank is known for writing a diary when she hid with her family from the Nazis in Amsterdam during World War II. The young Jewish writer died at the age of 15 in the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp, after her hiding place was discovered.
In 2006 the Iranian government sponsored a conference dedicated to questioning the historical accuracy of Nazi atrocities toward Jews, and the country’s leaders have publicly denied the Holocaust.
In 2014, Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei wrote on Twitter: “#Holocaust is an event whose reality is uncertain and if it has happened, it’s uncertain how it has happened.”
According to the U.S. State Department, the Iranian government censors films deemed incompatible with Islamic values. Reporters Without Borders rated the country as “one of the world’s most oppressive countries as regards freedom of information.”
Watch a preview for the documentary here:
Contact Josefin Dolsten at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter, @JosefinDolsten
Anne Frank would have liked Audrey Hepburn. After all, her diary is filled with the teenager’s movie star aspirations.
But the two actually share a much closer bond than you might think.
According to a new memoir written by Hepburn’s son, the actress was one of the first to read what would become “Diary of a Young Girl,” after the war.
“Two years after the war’s end, she received a manuscript [The Diary of Anne Frank], Dotti writes in “Audrey at Home.” “It was the diary of a young girl born, like my mother, in 1929, who had lived for two years hidden in a shelter set up behind a bookshelf in an Amsterdam apartment. Her name was Anne Frank. Reading the diary stunned my mother because, as she said, ‘That child had written a complete account of what I had experienced and felt.’ “
In an interview with People Magazine, he added: “My mother never accepted the simple fact that she got luckier than Anne. She possibly hated herself for that twist of fate.”
The photo above shows Hepburn posing with Otto Frank, Anne’s father, and his second wife in Bürkenstock, Switzerland.
The memoir also offers a haunting explanation for Hepburn’s legendary waifish figure. Starvation, rather than genetics, was responsible for the silhouette craved by so many “Breakfast at Tiffany” fans.
“Twenty two thousand people died from hunger in Holland during the final months of World War II, my mother escaping death by a hairbreadth,” Dotti writes in the book. “She was sixteen years old, stood almost five foot six and weighed eighty-eight pounds.”
In another passage, he describes that Hepburn “suffered from asthma, jaundice and other illnesses caused by malnutrition, including acute anemia and a serious form of edema which Mum explained like this: ‘It begins with your feet and when it reaches your heart, you die. With me, it was above the ankles when I was liberated.’ “
According to People, those wartime memories plagued the star for the rest of her life. “When I would go to the station, there were cattle cars packed with Jewish families, with old people and children,” Hepburn once said. “We did not yet know that they were traveling to their deaths. People said they were going to the ‘countryside.’ It was very difficult to understand, for I was a child. All the nightmares of my life are mixed in with those images.”
Born in Belgium to a British father and Dutch mother, Hepburn lived through the Nazi occupation of Holland, including the Dutch famine which killed 22,000 in 1944. At the end of the war, a soldier gave her 7 bars of chocolate, which she associated with joy and liberation for the rest of her life.
A cure for the mean reds, perhaps?
Photos from Yair Naveh’s Culture blog. 3d Animation by Andy Gent, 2d animation by Yoni Goodman
An Anne Frank animated movie would’ve sounded like a terrible joke to me in the past. In fact, “Saturday Night Live” made that joke in the 90s.
But to hear that Ari Folman, the director of “Waltz with Bashir” and [The Congress], who also shares Anne Frank’s initials (AF), will be directing an all-ages adaptation of the Holocaust victim’s story, well, I can hardly think of more capable hands.
When I saw exclusive pictures on Yair Raveh’s cinema blog on Mako, from the set of the two test shots for the project, I could hardly contain my excitement. I’m imagining “Pan’s Labyrinth”-meets-“Bambi”-meets-Tim Burton’s full feature animated films?
Despite his somewhat misleading last name, George Zimmerman is not Jewish. But according to GQ’s newly-released profile of the Zimmerman family, the man who shot Trayvon Martin feels a strange connection to Anne Frank.
Robert Zimmerman, George’s brother and the “Zimmerman in charge of rebranding” told the magazine that George, an aspiring painter, will likely be working on a portrait of Frank in the near future because he “identifies with her.” George’s painting of an American flag recently sold for $100,000.
This budding art career is all part of Robert’s plan to turn his younger brother, whom he calls the “Wreck it Ralph of America,” into a reality TV star. Apparently, they’re really big on the Kardashians.
Read the fascinating profile here.
Beyonce took a little break from her Mrs. Carter World Tour to pay a visit to the Anne Frank house in Amsterdam with Jay-Z.
Don’t believe us? See for yourself:
Queen Bey even took the time to sign the guestbook. Let’s just hope she didn’t pull a Bieber.
Beyoncé at the Anne Frank Museum in Amsterdam today pic.twitter.com/yZ4b8FeNXE — Beyoncé Land (@BeyonceLand) March 19, 2014
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