Israel calls ‘Shoah’ director Lanzmann’s death an ‘enormous loss for humanity’
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Israel calls ‘Shoah’ director Lanzmann’s death an ‘enormous loss for humanity’

Yad Vashem says 9-hour movie, which focused on testimonies of survivors, was a 'tectonic shift in Holocaust cinema'

In this photo taken on February 11, 2016 French writer, journalist and movie producer Claude Lanzmann poses in Paris on February 11, 2016. (AFP PHOTO / JOEL SAGET)
In this photo taken on February 11, 2016 French writer, journalist and movie producer Claude Lanzmann poses in Paris on February 11, 2016. (AFP PHOTO / JOEL SAGET)

The death on Thursday of Claude Lanzmann, director of the landmark Holocaust documentary “Shoah,” represents an “enormous loss for humanity,” Israel’s foreign ministry said.

“Claude Lanzmann’s death constitutes an enormous loss for humanity and especially for the Jewish people,” ministry spokesman Emmanuel Nahshon said.

Lanzmann had given a voice to “millions of Jews exterminated by the Nazis, and allowed the world to understand the immensity of the tragedy,” he said.

The French filmmaker and writer was best known for “Shoah,” a more than nine-hour documentary considered by many the most haunting film ever made about the murder of six million Jews during World War II.

Lanzmann died at the age of 92 at his home in Paris.

Israel’s Holocaust memorial, Yad Vashem, issued a statement mourning Lanzmann’s death and praising his work.

It said “Shoah” marked a “tectonic shift in Holocaust cinema.”

“Rejecting archival footage, docu-drama, and all other genres, Lanzmann insisted on focusing on testimonies of Holocaust survivors who had been closest to the mass murder of their people,” it said.

Yad Vashem chairman Avner Shalev said Lanzmann’s “cinematic work left an indelible mark on the collective memory, and shaped the consciousness of the Holocaust of viewers around the world, in these and other generations.”

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