Opposition Reported to Second Screening in Germany of ‘holocaust’

Efforts by a Cologne broadcasting station for a second screening of the American-mode television drama “Holocaust” is reported to have run into serious opposition from other. West German broadcasting systems. The series produced by NBC-TV was first shown in West Germany in January, 1979.

Friedrich-Wilhelm von Sell, head of the WDR radio and television station in Cologne, has taken the initiative for a second screening to be presented some time during the second half of 1981. But according to informed sources, other broadcasters in West Germany have expressed doubts about such a project. Von Sell was responsible for the original screening which ran into considerable opposition at the time. WDR officials refuse to comment on the dispute.

The two national television networks, ARD and ZDF refused to purchase “Holocaust.” After prolonged negotiations between local stations in several federal states, the series was presented nationwide but on the so-called “third program,” a network less popular than ARD and ZDF.

Nevertheless, polls taken directly after the broadcast showed that it was watched by a huge national audience and had a powerful impact on public opinion in West Germany. Follow-up polls taken a few weeks later indicated that the impact had completely worn off. If von Sell is successful in reviving the series, it would again be show on the “third program.”

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