DOCUMENTARY

Leon Askin - (Über)Leben und Schauspiel. Private Anmerkungen

Leon Askin - Living, Surviving and Acting. Private Observations

Egon Humer
'The art of the stage actor and even of a stage director is evanescent. Nothing remains of it but a 'still' photograph or two (...). Not everyone can be a genius. Somebody has to be a Leon Askin - and that's me.' Leon Askin, born in Vienna in 1907, fled from the Nazis to the USA in 1940. He acted in over 70 films along with many Hollywood stars, typecast as the Russian, the villain, the comic pasha because of his accent and appearance. His parents were murdered in the Holocaust. In 1994, Askin returned to Vienna and now lives in a guarded Jewish retirement home. A return, but not a homecoming. Built up into a Hollywood legend in Austria, the 89-year-old now runs his life and career from a wheelchair and still appears on the stage and in films. The private Leon Askin is portrayed: his daily routine, his contact with those around him, at work. During quiet moments, he discusses his thoughts about persecution, emigration, work, discipline, success, the image one projects to the world, his identity as a Jew, loneliness, the struggle for recognition and health, life, acting - and also about death. 'The night was over. The story was at its end. We sang Chad gad yhoo, Chad gad yhoo.'
Technical Data
Running time: 52
Format: Digital Video/Beta SP
Language spoken: German/English
Production year: 1997
Credits
Director(s): Egon Humer
Writer(s): Egon Humer
Cinematographer(s): Egon Humer
Key cast: Leon Askin
Producer: Egon Humer
Producers: Egon Humer
Production company
Egon Humer Film TV-Medienproduktion
Bäckenbrünnlgasse 3/6
1180 Vienna
tel:+43 1 478 75 89