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Fall of Paris, 1944

Film | Digitized | RG Number: RG-60.1462 | Film ID: 2996

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    Fall of Paris, 1944


    (INV 1457) Hand-held slate reading "SPX-F 8-17 Paris Capt Morse Jensen" 00:06 Shot of bridge (across Seine?), with a person crossing it. Smoke rising behind a building in the BG. 00:12 Large crowds in street cheering, smiling, clapping, and waving at the camera. 00:16 Camera moves left to scan view of the crowds. 00:24 Wider shot of crowds, again moving left, coming back a full circle. 00:44 Soldiers and civilians standing on a military vehicle above crowds. A Red Cross station is across the street. 00:50 Wider shot of soldiers standing on a tank near a metro station. 01:05 French tricolor flag hanging above Le Massena (café?). An older civilian climbs the tank. 01:18 Suspected collaborators and German POWs marched down the street in the midst of a crowd of French people. Shop signs in BG. 01:24 different angle. Soldiers in a car. 01:44 Soldiers in tank driving in street. 01:49 People hugging and kissing the soldiers. French tricolor flag in BG. 01:58 Passing Le Massena again. 02:07, Very quick scan of street stores. 02:10 Close up on a crowd as German POWS or collaborators are marched through the street. Angry faces, mouthing words and spitting, waving an American flag. 02:25 Camera follows the POWs being marched down. POWs with their arms in the air or on their head. 03:15 POWs marched down street, crowds. 03:30 POWS marched down the street as the crowds look on. A van drives opposite them with a passenger waving a Red Cross flag 03:45 Closer shot of crowd and POWs. 04:02 Empty street (no crowds). Soldiers waving as they are driven in an army vehicle. 04:06 High angle shot of a courtyard near a parking lot. French General Duttler arrives. 04:19 Military vehicle with soldiers in uniform, a motorcycle, and a French police car with the Free French Force's Cross of Lorraine painted on it. 04:26 Two men standing, perhaps on a balcony. Street and crowds in the BG. 04:32 A photo hangs on the main gun of a tank. CU of a picture of Hitler, with the word "merde" written across his face, handheld by more than one person. Other illegible writing on the picture. Soldiers ride tank with the Free French Forces' logo through the crowds. 04:48 Men looking out from window. 9 French flags waving out the window. 04:53 Soldier holding a slate which reads "SPX-F-8-24 Paris Capt Morse Jensen" 05:00 French civilians loot German trucks of food and pilfer luggage. Food or other objects are being thrown/distributed to the crowd. 05:14 Crowd lifts a canvas to reach the objects beneath it. A few men and women hand out bags to the crowd. Some pushing and shoving. 05:40 HAS of the distributing scene. 05:52 POWs marched down the street. Tuileries Metro Station in BG. 06:07 Crowd of onlookers. A child waves the French flag. 06:14 A car with French flag and flowers drives down street. A few people playing woodwind instruments behind. 06:21 CU of crowd. 06:27 Soldiers, civilians, and children on a tank. Sign in BG reads "Centre du Prisonnieres de Guerre". 06:31 A row of police officers. 06:39 The back of a man and woman looking at smoke rising across river from behind a building in the BG. A person stands next to his bicycle looking on. 06:49 Very crowded street. German POWs marched into a building. 07:05 Soldiers triumphantly leading POWs down the street. 07:12 A broken tank in a street letting off smoke. 07:18 A parked car burning. It is labeled "Seine" and "6521-RN2" 07:26 Soldiers in rows with suitcases and luggage. 07:38 Soldiers behind Army vehicle driving away.
    Event:  August 17-24, 1944
    Paris, France
    Accessed at United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, courtesy of Library of Congress
    Director: George C. Stevens
    Producer: Special Coverage Unit (SPECOU)
    Camera Operator: Jensen
    George Stevens (December 18, 1904 – March 8, 1975) was an American film director, producer, screenwriter and cinematographer. During World War II, Stevens joined the U.S. Army Signal Corps and headed a film unit from 1943 to 1946 under General Eisenhower. His unit shot footage documenting D-Day — including the only Allied European Front color film of the war — the liberation of Paris and the meeting of American and Soviet forces at the Elbe River, as well as horrific scenes from the Duben labor camp and the Dachau concentration camp. Stevens also helped prepare the Duben and Dachau footage and other material for presentation during the Nuremberg Trials. In 2008, his footage was entered into the U.S. National Film Registry by the Librarian of Congress as an "essential visual record" of World War II.
    The Special Coverage Unit (SPECOU) was placed under the control of the Supreme Headquarters' Allied Expeditionary Force (SHAEF). The SPECOU consists of 45 people: writers like Ivan Moffat, William Saroyan and Irwin Shaw; cameramen like Dick Hoar, Ken Marthey, William Mellor, Jack Muth; sound operators as Bill Hamilton, who comes from Columbia, assistant directors, as Holly Morse, who has worked with Hal Roach.

    Physical Details

    B&W / Color
    Black & White
    Image Quality
    Time Code
    00:00:03:00 to 00:07:42:00
    Film Format
    • Master
    • Master 2996 Digital: ProRes HD HQ 422 - HD
      Master 2996 Digital: ProRes HD HQ 422 - HD
      Master 2996 Digital: ProRes HD HQ 422 - HD
      Master 2996 Digital: ProRes HD HQ 422 - HD

    Rights & Restrictions

    Conditions on Access
    You do not require further permission from the Museum to access this archival media.
    Public Domain
    Conditions on Use
    To the best of the Museum's knowledge, this material is in the public domain. You do not require further permission from the Museum to reproduce or use this material.

    Keywords & Subjects

    Administrative Notes

    Film Provenance
    The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum purchased these film segments as HD digital video files from the George Stevens Collection at the Library of Congress in February 2013 in order to replace the videotape elements we purchased in February 1992.
    Part of 111 ADC 2217 from the National Archives.
    Copied From
    transfer from b/w HDCam master
    Film Source
    Library of Congress - Motion Picture, Broadcasting and Recorded Sound Division (MBRS)
    File Number
    Legacy Database File: 5684
    Source Archive Number: 50912-2
    Record last modified:
    2024-02-21 07:51:12
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