Monday 17 March 2003

Hitler: not exciting enough!

I am currently reading Nemesis, the second volume of Ian Kershaw's excellent biography of Adolf Hitler. A TV series is being made based on Volume 1 (Hubris). But there is a problem and Kershaw has quit the production:
The US network CBS, which is funding the series, suggested Sir Ian’s biography was too dry to air on prime time TV.

Last week, the author gave no detail on why he left the production but said: "I took the decision some months ago. I have not fallen out with the production company but have had no dealings with them since I withdrew."

What exactly was wrong with the first book that made it unsuitable for television?
The president of CBS, Leslie Moonves, said the film was no longer based on Hubris because the book was an academic piece and was "quite dry and needed more incidents".
After reading some 600 pages on Hitler's life, I venture to suggest that a shortage of incidents was not a noticeable feature of his career - and I've only got as far as 1937.