Producer Artur Brauner donates ‘Europa, Europa,’ other films to Berlin Jewish Museum


BERLIN (JTA) — Film producer Artur Brauner, 97, a Polish-born Jew who made Germany his home, has donated 21 of his works to the Jewish Museum in Berlin.

Brauner handed over his original films to the museum on Monday.

Described as treasures of postwar German cinema, the films include “Europa Europa” (1990), which won a Golden Globe for best foreign language film. Many of the films are no longer publicly available.

Brauner, who escaped the Holocaust by fleeing to the Soviet Union in 1940, later settled in Berlin. He worked with such renowned actors as Romy Schneider, with whom he made the 1982 film “The Passerby” — her last film. This and “Europa Europa,” both dealing with Holocaust themes, were shown at the museum on Monday. During an intermission, Brauner discussed his films with visiting school groups.

In all, the film company Brauner created after World War II produced more than 500 films, and frequently employed directors who had fled Nazi Germany. Though he focused on the Nazi crimes early on, in such films as “Morituri,” reportedly the German public had little interest in this topic at first. He returned to the subject in the 1970s.

Brauner endowed the Artur Brauner Foundation in 1991 to promote filmmakers working on themes of interfaith and interethnic understanding. In 2009, he presented 21 of his Holocaust-related films to Yad Vashem, Israel’s Holocaust memorial and archive.

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