20.000 Israelis Participate in Filming ‘exodus’ in Jerusalem Square
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20.000 Israelis Participate in Filming ‘exodus’ in Jerusalem Square

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For two days now, Jerusalem has been virtually a Hollywood movie set–with the big scene set for tonight, when 20,000 Israelis poured into the city’s largest square to participate in the reenactment of Israel’s proudest moment, the proclamation of Israel’s Declaration of Independence, which occurred on May 14, 1948.

Otto Preminger, producer of the filmization of the Leon Uris novel, “Exodus. ” brought his camera crews, technicians, and cast here early yesterday. Until now, the film has been shot mainly on location in Haifa, While cameras roamed the streets yesterday and today, shooting various scenes as background, preparations were made for two of the three important scenes to be filmed here.

One of the scenes will show the dynamiting of the King David Hotel. During the period of active fighting here among Jews, Arabs and the British mandatory power’s troops, a wing of the hotel had actually been blown up by some of the more militant of the Zionist fighters. Another scene involves the trial of a member of the Haganah, the more moderate, underground fighting arm of the Jews in Palestine. This trial was staged today in the Supreme Court building, where “British” officers sweated a “captured” member of the Haganah.

As night fell, crowds began filling the square for the reenactment of the Proclamation of Independence. To help bring out the crowd, a special lottery had been organized, with 10,000 tickets sold up to 24 hours before the scheduled shooting of this scene. Persons crowding into the square to act as real -life movie extras had to have their lottery tickets stamped at the site of the filming. Winners of the lottery will receive cash prizes.

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