June 22, 2008

Documentary Film

I have just returned from ten days in Germany, where I was working on a documentary film about the search for and prosecution of Nazi war criminals (working Title: Elusive Justice). I have been working with Jonathan Silvers, the film's director, for the past year or so and joined him and the crew (including the very talented cameraman, Bob Caccamise) in Berlin; from there, we traveled to Cologne, Krefeld, and Frankfurt.

Bobby Caccamise, Neal Robin, and Jonathan Silvers in the Courthouse in Cologne

In Berlin, we filmed at the former and current sites of the Berlin Document Center. We interviewed Henry Leide, an expert on East German prosecutions of Nazi war criminals, and Niklas Frank, the son of Hans Frank.

In Cologne, we interviewed Judge Fassbender, who presided over the Kurt Lischka trial, and Peter Finkelgruen, who carried on an eleven-year quest to see Anton Malloth, the murderer of his grandfather, brought to justice.

Judge Fassbender and Petra Krischok, our local producer

Peter Finkelgruen

In Krefeld, we interviewed Ralph Klein, an anti-fascist activist, who carreid out demonstrations two years ago against one Horst Richter, who had been convicted of war crimes, in absentia, by an Italian court and who lives in Germany, without fear, apparently, of the German justice system. We filmed outside of Richter's home, and his wife came out to speak with us, providing a spontaneous and dramatic interview.

Ralph Klein in Krefeld

In Frankfurt, we interviewed Gerhard Wiese, who had been a prosecutor in the Frankurt Auschwitz trial, and is perhaps the only survivng figure from the trial. Sitting in the courtroom, where the trial commenced, Wiese provided details of and reflections about this most important proceeding.

Bobby Caccamise, our cameraman

Gerhard Wiese, prosecutor in the Frankfurt Auschwitz Trial

This film will tell a crucially important story about the pursuit of justice and the failures and successes of that pursuit. I am very excited to be working on it.

1 comment:

David Miller said...

I would wonder emotionally if it would be difficult for you to visit these places, knowing what had happened there. Luckily, it is a different world, but we will never forget.