Anatole LitvakAnatole Litvak (; May 21, 1902 – December 15, 1974) was a Russian-born, Lithuanian-American filmmaker who wrote, directed, and produced films in various countries and languages. He began his theatrical training at age 13 in Petrograd.
Litvak was notable for directing little-known foreign actors to early fame, often winning them Academy Awards. In 1936 he directed ''Mayerling'', a film which made Charles Boyer and Danielle Darrieux international stars. He returned Swedish star Ingrid Bergman to popularity with American audiences in 1956 with ''Anastasia'', which won her an Oscar. He directed Olivia de Havilland to an Academy Award nomination for ''The Snake Pit'' in 1948. He also directed Jean Gabin in his screen debut, and directed Elia Kazan in his earliest acting role, ''City for Conquest''.
Litvak directed ''Confessions of a Nazi Spy'' in 1939 starring Edward G. Robinson, which used actual newsreel footage from U.S. Nazi rallies. As a refugee from Nazi Germany, Litvak was among the few directors who tried to open Hollywood's eyes to the threat Germany posed to Europe and the world.
During World War II, he enlisted and co-directed documentaries with Frank Capra, including ''Why We Fight'' films. His solo-directed, ''The Battle of Russia'', in 1943, won numerous awards and was nominated for an Oscar. Because of Litvak's ability to speak Russian, German, and French, he supervised the filming of the D-Day Normandy landings. He also filmed aerial warfare with the U.S. Eighth Air Force. For his volunteer wartime efforts, he ended the war as a full colonel, receiving special awards from the governments of France, Britain, and the United States. Provided by Wikipedia
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