Biografie Lionel Rogosin

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Born and raised on the East Coast of the United States, he was the only son of textile industry mogul and philanthropist Israel Rogosin. Lionel Rogosin attended Yale University and obtained a degree in chemical engineering in order to join his father`s business. He served in the United States Navy during World War Two. Upon his return, he spent his free time traveling in war-ridden Eastern and Western Europe and Israel, as well as a trip to Africa in 1948. He then worked in his father`s company until 1954, while teaching himself film with a 16mm Bolex camera.

Concerned with political issues including racism and fascism, Rogosin participated in a United Nations film called Out, a documentary about the plight of Hungarian refugees. At this juncture, Rogosin devoted himself to promoting peace and confronting issues such as nuclear war, imperialism, and racism.

Apartheid was his first target, but in order to make a film against it, he decided to learn by filming the Bowery, New York`s skid row. (...) Thus he made On the Bowery in 1955-1956 in the tradition of neo-realism. The film was the first American film to receive the Grand Prize for Documentary at the Venice Film Festival in 1956. It also received a British Academy Film Award in 1956. (...)

Turning to the struggle against Apartheid, Rogosin, with a small crew and under the pretense of making a commercial film on African music, clandestinely documented the life of a black South African migrant worker in Johannesburg. Completed in 1958 with nonprofessional actors and a young African singer named Miriam Makeba, Come Back, Africa won the Critics` Film Award at the Venice Film Festival. Rogosin arranged for Makeba to leave South Africa by bribing officials. He placed her under contract and arranged her first appearance on American television, on The Steve Allen Show. Rogosin supported Makeba financially, paying for her trip and living expenses when she left South Africa and traveled throughout Europe and the United States. (...)
He died in Los Angeles in December 2000. He is interred in the Hollywood Forever Cemetery, Hollywood, California. (Wiki)


Filmografie (Auswahl) zu Lionel Rogosin


COME BACK, AFRICA
1959
Regie, Drehbuch, Produzent