A blind hero – The love of Otto Weidt

ARD, 2013, 90 min.

A film about the untold story of Otto Weidt, who saved numerous Jews during the Nazi reign of terror in Germany.

This docudrama is based on the true, riveting and highly emotional biography of the Berlin brush manufacturer Otto Weidt, a “silent hero” – “who remained human during inhuman times” (to quote Inge Deutschkron, who witnessed the events and is the last surviving member of Otto Weidt’s workforce). With contracts for the Wehrmacht and some black marketeering, Weidt, the owner of a small brush-making workshop in Berlin, appeared to be doing a flourishing business. Right before the eyes of the Gestapo, he managed, for years, to protect his employees, almost all of them Jewish and most of them blind, from being apprehended by the Nazis. When his secretary and closest confidante, Alice Licht, was sent to Auschwitz, Otto Weidt, who was himself almost completely blind, set off to rescue her from the concentration camp.

In the course of 90 minutes, we want to tell the story of Otto Weidt (1883 – 1947), describe his actions, examine his motives and convey his unshakeable view of humanity. A penniless house painter from humble origins, who rose to become an entrepreneur of considerable influence, but forfeited his own material welfare and hid numerous Jews during the Nazi reign of terror in Germany, saving them from deportation and certain death. One of the people he rescued was Inge Deutschkron, who can give us an exclusive account of how she survived those dark times with the help of Otto Weidt.

Writing: Heike Brückner von Grumbkow, Jochen von Grumbkow
directed by: Kai Christiansen
Production: Vincent TV GmbH
Co-Produktion: NDR, WDR, RBB, HR
Executive Producers: Matthias Martens
Editorial Assistance, Assistance Director: Matthias Most
Produktionsassistenz: Melanie Heilig
Camera: Jan Kerhart
Assistance Camera: Dariusz Brunzel, Ole Fensky
Sound: Corinna Zink
Assistance Sound: Hagen Waechter
Editing: Barbara Toennieshen
Composer: Hans-Peter Ströer

Participant: Inge Deutschkron (contemporary witness)
Actors: Edgar Selge, Henriette Confurius, Julia Goldberg, Heike Hanold-Lynch, Katrin Pollitt, Uwe Bohm, Fabian Busch u.a.

Redaktion: Alexander von Sallwitz (NDR), Beate Schlanstein (WDR), Rolf Bergmann (RBB), Esther Schapira (HR)

Die Produktion wird aus Mitteln der Nordmedia Filmförderung und des Medienboards Berlin Brandenburg gefördert.