Mime artist Marcel Marceau's story told in film 'Resistance'

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Image Copyright: Pantaleon films. Used with permission.

Edmund Burke said that in order for evil to triumph, what good men needed to do was, nothing. It's a paraphrase to an often-quoted bit of advice when talking about the moral ills and political quagmires we find ourselves in. Nazi Germany was something else altogether and yet many people still did nothing. Today's guest, director Jonathan Jakubowicz, focuses on an unlikely hero who eventually became known for his role and life lived in and around the art of silence.

The story is told in Jakubowicz' film Resistance, which centres around the story of famed mime artist Marcel Marceau.

All Marcel Marceau wanted was a life in the arts. Working at his father's butcher shop during the day, the talented mime tried to make his dream come true on the city's small stages and to win the affections of the politically active Emma. To please her, Marceau agreed to join a dangerous mission -- to save 123 Jewish orphans from the grasp of the German Nazis, and take them across the border to Switzerland.

Together with Emma, Marceau joined the French resistance to stand against the atrocities of the Second World War. Face2Face host David Peck talks to Jakubowicz about his new film Resistance which stars Ed Harris, Jesse Eisenberg and Clémence Poésy. They talk about inspiration and why artists create, responsibility and pushing back, connecting with an audience, Marcel Marceau, the art of silence and making the invisible visible.

About the director:

Jonathan Jakubowicz is Venezuela's most celebrated filmmaker and writer. His film Secuestro Express was nominated for best foreign language film at the British Independent Film Awards and was a New York Times critics pick in 2005.

In 2005, Secuestro Express became Venezuela's highest-grossing film, eclipsing such movies as Titanic and The Passion of the Christ. It became the first Venezuelan movie to be acquired by a major US distributor -- Miramax. Jakubowicz's first film was Distance, a poignant short film about a woman's mysterious past unfolding during an unexpected trip to Holland in the aftermath of the terrorist attacks. Distance screened at the World Film Festival of Montreal, New York Independent Film Festival and Palm Springs Short Film Festival, among others.

In addition, Jakubowicz wrote and directed, Ships of Hope, a documentary recounting the journey of refugee Jews on a ship fleeing the European Nazi Regime to Venezuela. It screened at the Director's Guild of America's Angelus Awards, and the Havana Film Festival. The documentary went on to win best documentary at the Premios a la Calidad de Cenac, the Venezuelan Oscars.

Jakubowicz is Polish-Jewish descendant and has a BA in communications from the Universidad Central de Venezuela.

Image Copyright: Pantaleon films. Used with permission.

F2F Music and Image: David Peck and Face2Face. 

For more information about David Peck's podcasting, writing and public speaking please visit his site here. With thanks to Josh Snethlage and Mixed Media Sound.

Editor's note, April 9, 2020: An earlier version of this story misspelled the first name of the film's director. He is Jonathan Jakubowicz, not Jonathon.

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