Ufa’s Executive Board on the Expulsion of Jewish Employees

"On the Continued Employment of Jewish Staff Members and Employees”

Ufa’s Executive Board on the Expulsion of Jewish Employees

Report from Ufa Board Meeting of March 29, 1933

With respect to the question of the continued employment of Jewish staff members and employees at Ufa, which the national revolution in Germany has thrust to the fore, the executive board resolves in principle that whenever possible, contracts with Jewish staff members and employees should be canceled. It further resolves that steps be undertaken immediately to cancel the contracts of the individual persons in question.
Each member of the board should decide as to which staff members and employees in his area of responsibility are to be dismissed immediately and which are to be released from Ufa in a gradual dismissal process. Cases of hardship are to be treated with consideration. The payout of wages after notice has been given is to be discussed with Herr Klitzsch.

In addition, the following specific decisions were made:

a) Charell Contract

It is agreed that under the prevailing circumstances the contract with Charell as director and screenplay editor of the film based on the Odysseus material planned in Pommer’s production must immediately be cancelled; not only does Charell’s personality stand in the way of the film’s production, above all the film would meet with considerable resistance from nationalist German viewers. The board asks Herr Dr. Donner and Herr Dr. von Boehmer to take on the legal aspects of canceling the contract with Charell with a view to the best interests of the Ufa.

Charell’s collaborators on the screenplay, Herr Schulz and Herr Stemmle, are to be informed that work on the screenplay will be discontinued. Due to the changed circumstances, their contract is to be dissolved.

b) Erich Pommer

It is further resolved that the contract with Pommer is also to be canceled in view of the impossibility of realizing the films produced by him under present circumstances. The film Walzerkrieg [Waltz Time in Vienna] planned in his production, whose screenplay has already been completed, is to be produced. The film Ljubas Zobel [Ljuba’s Sable] is to be abandoned. Herr Correll is asked to negotiate the matter with Herr Pommer personally.

c) Director Erich Engel
In view of the information provided by Herr Wendhausen regarding statements by Herr Engel which were directed against the employment of Christians during his tenure at the Deutsches Theater and which made him appear to be a blatant communist, his contract is to be cancelled. First, however, Herr Wendhausen is to be questioned again as to the accuracy of his statements.

d) Werner Richard Heymann

In view of the respectable character of Werner R. Heymann and the fact that he served in the war as a front-line soldier, the board resolves to intercede with the government on his behalf to request that he continue to be used in the services of Ufa, especially as he has been baptized and belongs to the Protestant faith.

e) Robert Liebmann

The board resolves that in view of the present circumstances Robert Liebmann is to be dismissed. Herr Correll is asked to negotiate with him.

f) Dr. Hans Müller

His contract is to be cancelled as well, if no possibility is seen (deleted: to retain him as the author of patriotic works).

g) Director Wechsler

It is agreed that his contract is to be cancelled as well. Herr Correll is asked to discuss the matter in person with Herr Wechsler.

h) Director Dr. Berger

Once the film Walzerkrieg, which he is to direct, is completed, his contract is not to be renewed, unless its cancellation is already necessitated for other reasons.

i) Dr. Zeckendorf

Herr Correll is asked to cancel the existing one-year contract with Dr. Zeckendorf, as in view of the new circumstances he cannot be retained.

j) Recording Engineer Dr. Goldbaum

The decision has been made to dismiss him by May 15, effective June 30, and to grant him a leave of absence until that time, unless the opportunity arises to hire him out to another company until the termination of his contract.

k) Production Assistant Viktor Gertler

His contract is to be canceled by October 1, 1933, as in view of his Hungarian nationality and his Jewish faith his continued employment appears impossible.

1) Studio secretary Hartmann

Her contract is to be cancelled as soon as possible.

m) Gerard Jacobson

Jacobson, Werner Richard Heymann’s assistant, can no longer be employed by Ufa either. No objections shall be raised if he continues to work in Werner Richard Heymann’s private service.

n) Rosy Barsony

In view of the scarcity of juvenile actors, the attempt should be made to secure her continued employment.

o) Julius Falkenstein and Otto Wallburg
As the government parties have no reservations about their personalities either, nothing stands in the way of their further employment, yet they should not be given leading roles.

p) Otto Hein

It is agreed that the contract with Otto Hein must also be canceled in view of the situation created by the new circumstances.

q) Rudi Feld

As his work gives him a highly visible role, he cannot be retained in the long term. He should be advised to set himself up on a freelance basis together with Fräulein Hilb, whereby Ufa obliges itself to guarantee him commissions for a period of six months. There are no reservations about handling the matter in this way, as he will not play a visible role as an employee of the Ufa.

r) Georg Engel, Wochenschau

Due to his commendable work to date, it is agreed that he is not to be dismissed, but should continue to be employed internally.

(First version, deleted: Despite his commendable work to date, it is agreed that he must be dismissed.)

s) The question of the dismissal of the Jewish office workers Lilienthal, Mikolajewicz, Grunewak, and Breslauer is to be postponed for the time being, but their gradual dismissal should be considered. The supervising board members are to determine the date of their dismissal.

t) Dr. Kahlenberg
After long discussion of the question of dissolving his contract, it is agreed that no decision is necessary at the moment; rather, it is to be decided at a later time.

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