The Unbearably High Cost of Holocaust Footage

Documentary filmmakers struggle to pay the clearance fees demanded by the European organizations that hold the rights to World War II-era images for their movies, while the institutions say they need the money to preserve and store the precious historical material.

As documentaries have come to assume an increasingly prominent role in Holocaust education, a rather unlikely group of institutions has been profiting on the sidelines: the European film archives and distributors that claim the rights to footage depicting Nazi atrocities against the Jews.