Many films about the Holocaust, some of which are Israeli premieres, will be broadcast to mark Holocaust Remembrance Day, which takes place this year April 20-21.
Cellcom TV is featuring a collaboration with Yad Vashem to launch a Testimonial Channel that will be available for 48 hours starting on April 20. It will feature testimonials from Holocaust survivors and their families. It will also spotlight the “Collecting the Fragments” project in which survivors share documents, photographs and other objects from the Holocaust and will encourage viewers who own such items to share theirs as well.
Cellcom will be showing a number of Holocaust-themed films as well, from Israel and around the world. These include Avi Nesher’s Past Life, about sisters who travel to Europe to unravel a secret about their father’s wartime ordeal; a new documentary about Bergen-Belsen; and Roman Polanski’s The Pianist.
YesDocu is featuring four documentaries, which will also be available on YesVOD and StingTV. On April 20 at 9 p.m., Auschwitz Untold in Color will be shown (and it will also be on Cellcom TV). The movie, directed by David Shulman, offers a colorized version of archival films and photographs from Auschwitz, accompanied by survivors’ testimony and narrated by Ben Kingsley. While we are accustomed to seeing the Holocaust depicted in black and white in newsreel footage and in movies such as Steven Spielberg’s Schindler’s List, seeing the horrors shown in color, as they were in the feature film Son of Saul, can be especially disturbing.
The Windermere Children: In Their Own Words, by Guy Arthur and Francis Welch, will be shown on YesDocu on April 21 at 10:40 p.m. and will also be available on Cellcom TV. This film tells the story of a project to help 300 orphaned Jewish children who survived the Holocaust. Just after the war ended, they were brought to the shores of Lake Windermere in England to participate in a program aimed at helping them heal from their trauma.
The survivor interviews include firsthand accounts of their experiences during the war and the story of their arrival in Britain. While the project was originally intended to be temporary until these survivors could be resettled elsewhere, most of them remained in England and became British citizens.
Lisa Ades’s documentary, GI Jews: Jewish Americans in World II, will be shown on April 19 at 10 p.m. It uses extensive interviews to tell the story of the 550,000 Jewish American men and women who fought in the war.
Some of the well-known veterans include former US secretary of state Henry Kissinger, who came to the US from Germany as a refugee and then returned to Europe to fight the Nazis, as well as comedy greats Mel Brooks and Carl Reiner. The film also features the stories of American Jews who have died, among them baseball great Hank Greenberg and writers Norman Mailer, J.D. Salinger, Leon Uris and Joseph Heller.
But the film isn’t only about celebrities, and some of the most moving moments come from Americans who remember liberating concentration camps and were able to offer words of comfort in Yiddish to survivors.
Henri Dauman: Looking Up, by Peter Kenneth Jones, which will be shown on April 21 at 10 p.m., is the story of a Holocaust survivor who became a celebrated photographer.
Yes Channel 5 will present the feature film When Hitler Stole Pink Rabbit, on April 20 at 8 p.m. It will be shown also on YesVOD. Directed by Caroline Link, who also made Nowhere in Africa, it is based on the beloved book by Judith Kerr about a girl who must leave her toy bunny behind when her family flees the Nazis.
On HOT VOD Young from April 20-21, there will be several special programs relating to the Holocaust that are aimed at children called To Remember and Not Forget. Actor Tuval Shafir, who starred in the popular children’s show Galis, will take a group of children to the children’s section of the Ghetto Fighters’ House at Kibbutz Lohamei Hagetaot. Another program will feature a guided tour of Yad Vashem for children.
JoJo Rabbit, an Oscar-winning movie about a German child during the Holocaust who imagines that Hitler is his friend, which was derided by historians for inaccuracies but which has been a hit with audiences, will begin running on HOT VOD Cinema on April 21.