Westerbork Films Dossier
The UNESCO – Memory of the World – ‘ Westerbork films’ dossier (REF 1) consists of both the actual film footage, as well as a dossier with the 1944 film plan, film script, title cards (intertitles), and a file with correspondence between the camp and the outside world on obtaining camera’s , film and film processing. That film footage was researched and presented before on Settela•com.
These Westerbork film documents – the film script etc – complement the Westerbork film footage presented earlier – a first full version (RVD) of the Westerbork Film posted in 2019 (20190605) and the complete UNESCO album of all known footage shot by inmate Werner Rudolf Breslauer in the Westerbork camp in 1944, posted early 2020 (REF 2).
The final part of the UNESCO registry (Le film de Westerbork – édité le 8 mai 2017 – ID code 2016-118 ) lists all the documents on the Westerbork Film at the NIOD Institute for War, Holocaust and Genocide Studies.
That NIOD archive file — called (translated) : Directing, texts and correspondence of the film “Westerbork” consists of a file containing the original screenplay or script for the film, title cards, notes, correspondence and administration . That entire file has been scanned (total of 60 black and white scans) and is available online.
More information on the history and origin of the film translated from the french UNESCO registration is posted later.
Here, in this short film, the title cards are presented. Title cards referenced in the UNESCO registry, and prepared in the camp in 1944 for the Westerbork film. The name of the artist drawing these cards is not known, I guess. Digital scans of 11 different letter cards were retrieved from the public online archive of the NIOD Institute for War, Holocaust and Genocide Studies at the dutch National Archive (Nationaal Archief) – full info in CREDITS.
In this film these title cards are used in different ways, shown in 5 sections. The arrangement of the cards was chosen by me.
1 : ‘ORIGINALS’ – TRANSLATION IN SUBTITLES – The first section shows english subtitles with the restored scan images of the orignal drawings made in Camp Westerbork. The restoration includes exposure adjustment, crop, and if necessary rotation and flip horizontal or vertical of the supplied scans.
2: NEGATIVES – The second section shows the same images, now as negatives (white on black), the way title cards are usually shown in movies, and Breslauer did too while working on the Westerbork Film – see below on section 4.
3) The 3rd sequence of the title cards shows the negatives again, now animated with cross-overs (fade in- and out) between the negatives.
Trickaufnahmen – trick shots – was mentioned in the film plan (discussed further in a later post). Trick shots like slow-motion and similar animation work by Breslauer is actually found on the Westerbork film reel F1014 with so-called ‘Residual material’. This was previously reported in the 1997 edition of the book ‘Kamp Westerbork gefilmd’ by Broersma & Rossing (REF 3). That reel’s footage, to me feels like this was Breslauer’s working material for tests – so a test reel, rather than rest reel.
4 : BRESLAUER’S 1944 ANIMATION TEST – This 4th segment shows the above discussed footage of Breslauer’s test work with a title card’s negative on film, as well as his animation of cards with numbers of ‘input’ and outgoing deportations. That animation uses drawings , images , not found in the NIOD archive – showing statistics for deportations to Bergen-Belsen 3029 , and Lager Vught 897 . This Westerbork film footage was retrieved from : Unknown Westerbork Film Reel…F1014 (20190616) Michel van der Burg | Settela•Com | ISSN 2949-9313 (REF 4).
5 : ANIMATION COLLAGE – Here I combined the animation made in section 3 of this film, with the 1944 animation footage of Breslauer – all edited here again to conform.
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1 – UNESCO Memory of the World Register – Unesco.org – Mémoire du monde – Le film de Westerbork (accessed 20190605) URL http://www.unesco.org/new/fr/communication-and-information/memory-of-the-world/register/full-list-of-registered-heritage/registered-heritage-page-9/westerbork-films/
2 – WESTERBORK FILMS COLLECTION – UNESCO ALBUM | 20200120 | Michel van der Burg | Settela•Com (accessed 2021 May 15) URL: https://settela.com/2020/01/20/westerbork-films-collection-unesco-album/
3 – ‘Kamp Westerbork gefilmd’ by Koert Broersma and Gerard Rossing (editors Dirk Mulder and Ben Prinsen; ISBN 9023232658
4 – Unknown Westerbork Film Reel…F1014 | 20190616 | Michel van der Burg | Settela•Com | ISSN 2949-9313 (accessed 2021 May 15) URL: https://wp.me/p91enH-2b
Source : NIOD Institute for War, Holocaust and Genocide Studies | 250i Westerbork, Judendurchgangslager | 854 Stukken over de Westerbork-film, 7 maart – 20 april 1944 en z.d. | File retrieved May 23, 2019 from Nationaal Archief (last accessed 2021 Apr 17) URL https://www.archieven.nl/nl/search-modonly?mivast=298&mizig=210&miadt=298&micode=250i&milang=nl&mizk_alle=westerbork%20film&miview=inv2#inv3t2
Westerbork Film Intertitles | 20210515 | Michel van der Burg | Settela•Com | ISSN 2949-9313
20220604 – Format changes credit line , references
20230518 – Credits and references updated with ISSN