Monday, April 22, 2013

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) secretly bought Nazi filmmaker, Leni Riefenstahl's, "Olympia"

Above is an excerpt of the film with athletes swimming the 200-breast. Note the technique differentiations but more importantly why was it okay for the IOC to buy, distribute and profit form a  Nazi propaganda film?

It's creator, Leni Riefenstahl was a brilliant filmmaker born in Berlin, Germany in 1902 and died in Germany in 2003 at 101-years-old - Riefenstahl contributions to cinematic arts have been emulated and celebrated by film historians, film critics, the Associated Press, The BBC. and even Jodi Foster who had hoped to star as Riefenstahl in a biopic. I am glad it was never made.

Now, moving on to Riefenstahl's dark side: after reading Adolphe Hitler's manifesto or Mein Kampf she had this to say:
"I had an almost apocalyptic vision that I was never able to forget. It seemed as if the Earth's surface were spreading out in front of me, like a hemisphere that suddenly splits apart in the middle, spewing out an enormous jet of water, so powerful that it touched the sky and shook the earth". 
According to the Daily Express of 24 April 1934, "The book made a tremendous impression on me. I became a confirmed National Socialist [NAZI] after reading the first page. I felt a man who could write such a book would undoubtedly lead Germany. I felt very happy that such a man had come..." [Link]

As a self confessed Nazi she goes on to make two of the greatest totalitarian propaganda films ever made, Olympia and Triumph of the Will. The most terrible thing about these films is that she made Nazis, along with the help of noted clothing designer, Hugo Boss, look really awesome. Yes Hugo Boss circa 1932 was a nazi: [Link]

Moving forward to present time, Germany sold their portion of the rights to Riefenstahl's Olympia to the IOC in the hope that the IOC would allow Leipzig to win the bid for the Olympic Games in 2012. (London got them obviously) Riefenstahl, still alive in 2002 sold her 70% ownership for whatever reason but the fact remains the IOC bought the rights to a film sponsored by a Nazi regime and one time card carrying Nazi.

Read more on the sale at the
In 1964, West Germany drew up a contract with Riefenstahl, which agreed that while both parties claimed exclusive ownership of the films, the director was to hold the usage rights and claim 70 percent of the royalties from them. Riefenstahl was also allowed to choose where and when her films were screened - a potentially politically-explosive responsibility the West German state decided it could do without. In 1979 she refused an application by the Free Democrats (FDP) to screen "Triumph" at an anti-Nazi rally. 
What a gal but the bigger question is, was it really that important for the IOC to disseminate such a product like that for a profit? You know their biggest purchasers will be white supremacist groups

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