Teen Star Says More Holocaust Films Needed to Educate the Young

Sophie Nelisse tells audience at 'The Book Thief' screening her generation doesn't know enough about what happened.

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Haaretz
Sophie Nelisse poses backstage with the Hollywood spotlight award at the 17th Annual Hollywood Film Awards Gala at the Beverly Hilton Hotel on Monday, Oct. 21, 2013, in Beverly Hills, Calif.
Sophie Nelisse poses backstage with the Hollywood spotlight award at the 17th Annual Hollywood Film Awards Gala at the Beverly Hilton Hotel on Monday, Oct. 21, 2013, in Beverly Hills, Calif.Credit: AP
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Haaretz

Sophie Nelisse, 13-year-old star of "The Book Thief," which premiered in American cinemas this week, that she thought that making movies about the Holocaust was important, the Hollywood Reporter said Monday.

At the Q&A session at the end of the official screening of the film at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, Nelisse, who plays Liesel, the movies' protagonist, explained why she thought it was important that films about the Holocaust be made. "Kids my age -- our generation -- don't know enough about what happened, the Hollywood Reporter reported Nelisse said about the Holocaust. "We don't learn about the Holocaust in my school."

The Book Thief is a drama based on a novel by the same name written by Markus Zusak. It tells the story of Liesel, an illiterate girl, as she learns to read in her foster home during World War II, detailing her relationship with her adoptive family, neighbors and the Jewish fist-fighter that the family is hiding from the Nazis.

To prepare for the part Nelisse learnt about the Holocaust by watching Schindler's List, Life Is Beautiful, The Pianist, The Boy in the Striped Pajamas and The Reader, as well as visiting historical sites in Berlin, where the movie was filmed, the Hollywood Reporter reported her as saying.

"Some people think it's annoying that we keep on making these movies, but I don't think so because all of the camp survivors are gonna die at some point - they're not gonna be alive soon - and I just hope that in 100 years people remember what happened, first of all to not let it happen again and sort of for a way to remember the people that died and to remember the people that fought for them. So I just think it's really important that we keep on making these movies," Nelisse was quoted by the Hollywood Reporter.

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