Posted: Monday, August 28, 2017 – 4:34 PM
Hollywood directors John Ford, George Stevens and Samuel Fuller entertained audiences with American cinema classics like The Grapes of Wrath, Shane and The Big Red One. But their most important contribution to history was their work in the U.S. Armed Forces and Secret Services, filming the realities of war and the liberation of Nazi concentration camps.
Together these directors, their crews, and their experiences are the subject of a new exhibition at Los Angeles Museum of the Holocaust (LAMOTH). “Filming the Camps: John Ford, Samuel Fuller, George Stevens, From Hollywood to Nuremberg,” which opened last week, will run through April 30, 2018 at the museum in Pan Pacific Park, 100 The Grove Dr., L.A.
Curated by noted historian and film director Christian Delage, the exhibit was designed, created and circulated by the Mémorial de la Shoah (Paris, France) and has been touring internationally. Its LAMOTH appearance marks its debut in the Western United States, supported by 20th Century Fox and with special memorabilia on loand from the family of Samuel Fuller.
“Filming the Camps” presents historic material including rare footage of the liberation of Dachau with detailed directors’ notes, narratives describing burials at Falkenau,the site of a sub-camp of the Flossenbürg Concentration Camp in the Czech republic, and the documentary that was produced as evidence for the Nuremberg trials.
The exhibition illuminates the conditions in which the directors and their crews worked. Their footage, presented in the exhibit in their original, unedited chronological sequence, enables viewers to grasp the scenes of devastation and horror these men encountered. The exhibition also follows how these wartime experiences had a profound impact on some of the directors and their future careers.
The exhibit marks the first time the three directors’ Holocaust films have been explored together, and gives a rare look at how they influenced each other’s subsequent work. “We are honored to host ‘Filming the Camps’ at Los Angeles Museum of the Holocaust,” said Beth Kean, executive director. “We are especially excited about bringing the exhibit to Los Angeles, where John Ford, Samuel Fuller and George Stevens lived and made their mark as filmmakers. The exhibit is a perfect fit for our museum because we teach Holocaust history within the framework of the L.A. narrative and emphasize the experiences of Holocaust survivors who settled in Los Angeles after the war.”
“I’ve gone through the personal archives of these three filmmakersto prepare the exhibit and the subsequent film I made,” Delage said. “It’s a real achievement to have the opportunity to tell their story in L.A. where it all started and where they all ended their lives, definitely overwhelmed by the experience of war and the discovery of the camps.”
For more information about the exhibit, filmmakers, curator and the museum, visit http://www.lamoth.org/exhibitions/temporary-exhibits/filming-the-camps-from-hollywo/.