[VIDEO] Director George Stevens’ Rare Color Footage of D-Day Invasion Released

The only known Allied colour footage of World War Two was uncovered in the attic of a Hollywood director by his son

From the Telegraph.uk:gungadin

When the warship HMS Belfast fired the shot that launched the D-Day landings, it was carrying an unlikely passenger – Hollywood film director George Stevens.

With Allied forces set to storm the Normandy beaches of Nazi-occupied France, Stevens was on-board making a unique16 millimetre colour film journal.

He had made his name in the 1930s, directing the likes of Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers in ‘Swing Time‘ (1936) and Cary Grant in ‘Gunga Din‘ (1939).

But in 1942, after seeing Leni Riefenstahl‘s Nazi propaganda movies, Stevens enlisted.

General Dwight Eisenhower assigned him to head up the combat motion-picture coverage, a unit covering the war in black-and-white 35 millimetre film for newsreels and military archives.

“We thought at the time that this was the only colour film of the war in Europe. As it turned out, there was some German film that had not yet been discovered”

But while documenting the Allied forces’ advance towards Berlin, he took with him a 16 millimetre camera and boxes of Kodachrome film on which he would shoot a personal visual diary of the war.

ww2_2925648cThe film canisters of the war were developed back in the US, but Stevens stored them and for decades they went untouched.

That changed when his son, George Stevens Jr, also a filmmaker, decided to make a documentary on his father’s life and was amazed to discover what he found.

An emotional Stevens remembers the first time he watched the films, astonished to see his young father heading to France on HMS Belfast.

“This film came on and it was sort of grey-blue skies and barrage balloons, those big things that hung in the sky, and it was on a ship. It turned out (to be) the HMS Belfast, and it was suddenly I realised the morning of the 6th of June, the beginning of the greatest seaborne invasion in history,” he said in a recent interview…(read more)

Telegraph.uk Source: APTN

D-Day to Germany – Rare HD color footage

Pictures and Video courtesy: George Stevens Productions / Warner Bros


2 Comments on “[VIDEO] Director George Stevens’ Rare Color Footage of D-Day Invasion Released”


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