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February 1994


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Shawn Levy <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Sun, 27 Feb 1994 16:44:13 -0800
text/plain (23 lines)
On Sun, 27 Feb 1994, Margaret Ervin wrote:
> Also I have heard vicious and interesting rumors about a Jerry Lewis film
> in which he plays a clown in a concentration camp.  Is this just someone
> making things up, or could this possibly be real?  I'd love to know.
I'm currently halfway through writing a bio of Lewis for St. Martin's
Press, and howsoever vicious and interesting it may be, it's TRUE.  In
1973, Lewis shot and starred in "The Day the Clown Cried," a
thinly-based-on-truth drama about Helmut Doork, a Jewish clown interned
by the Nazis at Auschwitz and forced by them to lead children into the
gas chambers.  The film was an international coproduction, and money
dried up very quickly into the actual filming.  Lewis put up money of his
own, the original producer died, and the film has never been completed.
Very few people have even seen Lewis' rough cut.  A "Spy" magazine
article in May, 1992, contains the full story.  Lewis still fumes
whenever he's asked about the subject.
       Shawn Levy       |   "I used to have such sweet, sweet dreams,
  [log in to unmask] |      But now it's more like an air raid."