Currently, I am reading a book titled, Animation under the Swastika—A History of Trickfilm in Nazi Germany, 1933-1945. It is the history of how Hitler and Göbbels attempted to compete with Hollywood, especially Disney.
A whole chapter in the book is devoted to the Disney movie Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. Evidently, it was Hitler’s favourite movie despite the Nazis never achieving to get the film released in Germany. Only a few people, including Hitler and Göbbels, saw the movie and had copies.
In the 1930s, the Nazi regime dubbed foreign media to control anything negative from abroad, as would be the case for Snow White. In the late 1930s, the animated film was voice-over by German-speaking actors. The movie had not been released during World War II. The nationwide release of the dubbed version was in February 1950.
One sad thing about this is that most of the voice actors were Jewish and did not survive the Holocaust.
The 1938 News Report only mention some names of the cast. The only voice credited for her role is Hortense Raky as Snow White. Two other female actors mentioned were Dora Gerson and a New Lady Star. Seeing her age, Dora Gerson must have been the voice-over for the Evil Queen (and maybe the Witch), while the new female star was certainly the singing voice of Snow White.
Most of the original 1938 cast were Jews, and were murdered by the Nazis: Dora Gerson died on 14 February 1943, murdered with her family at Auschwitz. Otto Wallburg also died in Auschwitz on 30 October 1944.
Kurt Lilien died on 28 May 1943, at Sobibor Extermination Camp. Finally, Kurt Gerron, the Dubbing Director, died on 28 October 1944 at Auschwitz. Kurt was coerced into directing a Nazi propaganda documentary intended to be viewed in “neutral” nations about Theresienstadt. However, once the movie was finished, he, his wife and the crew members of the documentary were deported on the camp’s final train transport to Auschwitz.
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