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Heir donates estate of Hitler’s filmmaker, Leni Riefenstahl

February 12, 2018

FILE - In this file photo dated Tuesday, Sept. 9, 2003, an unidentified housekeeper, passes by a picture of famous film director Leni Riefenstahl on the wall in Riefenstahl's home in Poecking, Germany, after she died Monday at the age of 101. A German cultural foundation said Monday Feb. 12, 2018, that it has been bequeathed photos, films, manuscripts, letters and files from the estate of Leni Riefenstahl, the legendary filmmaker best known for the propaganda movies she made for Nazi Germany. (AP Photo/Jan Pitman, FILE)

BERLIN (AP) — A German cultural foundation says it has been bequeathed photos, films, manuscripts, letters and files from the estate of Leni Riefenstahl, the legendary filmmaker best known for the propaganda movies she made for Nazi Germany.

The Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation said Monday that Riefenstahl’s sole heir, her former secretary, donated the complete collection amassed by the filmmaker, who died in 2003.

Her films included “Triumph of the Will,” which recorded the Nazis’ 1934 rally at Nuremberg, and “Olympia,” a meditation on muscle and movement at the 1936 Berlin Olympic games.

Riefenstahl always defended her work, saying she knew nothing of Nazi atrocities.

Foundation president Hermann Parzinger says his organization will treat the material with “a special responsibility for the critical examination of this controversial person of contemporary history.”

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