New Film Brings to Life Historic Legal Battle Fought Over Holocaust Denial

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Actress Rachel Weisz in the trailer for the upcoming film "Denial."
Actress Rachel Weisz in the trailer for the upcoming film "Denial."Credit: Screenshot/YouTube

JTA - With the Holocaust’s memory lately being abused by the “alt-right” in the U.S. and by far-right politicians in eastern Europe, the world could use a spirited defense of the historical account.

Enter Hollywood.

The upcoming film “Denial” dramatizes American Jewish historian Deborah Lipstadt’s real-life legal battle with prominent Holocaust denier British historian David Irving in the 1990s. The lead is played by British Jewish actress Rachel Weisz.

While the film doesn’t come out until September 30, as of Wednesday, you can watch a trailer online.

British playwright David Hare adapted Lipstadt’s book “History on Trial: My Day in Court With a Holocaust Denier” for the screenplay. Book and film recount how Irving sued Lipstadt for libel in England for calling him a “Holocaust denier.” Because English libel law puts the burden of proof on the defendant, Lipstadt essentially had to prove that the Holocaust happened to win the case.

Mick Jackson directed the film. Timothy Spall co-stars as Irving.

Lipstadt is now the Dorot Professor of Modern Jewish History and Holocaust Studies at Emory University.

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