Israel calls death of Holocaust film director 'enormous loss for humanity

By AFP
Published: July 5, 2018
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French writer, journalist and movie producer Claude Lanzmann .PHOTO: AFP/FILE

French writer, journalist and movie producer Claude Lanzmann .PHOTO: AFP/FILE

French writer, journalist and movie producer Claude Lanzmann .PHOTO: AFP/FILE In this file photo taken on September 14, 1982 French intellectuals (front row from L) Maxime Rodinson, Simone de Beauvoir, Claude Lanzmann, Regis Debray, Pierre Nora (2nd row 2ndL) and Alain Finkielkraut (2nd row 3rdL), pose at the Elysee palace after a meeting with French president Fran ois Mitterrand. PHOTO: AFP

JERUSALEM,: The death on Thursday of Claude Lanzmann, director of the landmark Holocaust documentary “Shoah”, represents an “enormous loss for humanity”, Israel’s foreign ministry said.

“Claude Lanzmann’s death constitutes an enormous loss for humanity and especially for the Jewish people,” ministry spokesperson Emmanuel Nahshon.

Lanzmann had given a voice to “millions of Jews exterminated by the Nazis and allowed the world to understand the immensity of the tragedy”, he said.

The French filmmaker and writer was best known for “Shoah,” a more than nine-hour documentary considered by many the most haunting film ever made about the murder of six million Jews during World War II.

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Lanzmann died at the age of 92 at his home in Paris.

Israel’s Holocaust memorial, Yad Vashem, issued a statement mourning Lanzmann’s death and praising his work.

It said “Shoah” marked a “tectonic shift in Holocaust cinema”.

“Rejecting archival footage, docu-drama, and all other genres, Lanzmann insisted on focusing on testimonies of Holocaust survivors who had been closest to the mass murder of their people,” it said.

Yad Vashem chairman Avner Shalev said Lanzmann’s “cinematic work left an indelible mark on the collective memory, and shaped the consciousness of the Holocaust of viewers around the world, in these and other generations.”

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