- Title: GERMANY: German film "The Red Baron" premiers in Berlin
- Date: 4th April 2008
- Summary: BERLIN, GERMANY, (MARCH 31 2008) (REUTERS) MANFRED VAN RICHTHOFEN, THE RED BARON'S NEPHEW, TALKING TO JOURNALISTS ON THE RED CARPET (SOUNDBITE) (German) MANFRED VON RICHTHOFEN, THE RED BARON'S NEPHEW, SAYING: "He still plays a major roll in the German airforce today. In fact a whole squadron is named after him. What I also find good is that he's even thought of highly abroad. Where else in the history of war has someone been buried by the enemy with full military honours."
- Embargoed: 19th April 2008 13:00
- Location: Germany
- Country: Germany
- Reuters ID: LVA8UQSCFKSJV80JEWQW1G3EPWAL
- Story Text: Stars of the new German film "The Red Baron", which tells the story of the legendary German World War One fighter pilot Manfred von Richthofen attend the premier in Berlin.
"The Red Baron" a German movie based on the life of German World War One fighter pilot Manfred von Richthofen got off to a flying start at its premiere in the German capital Berlin on Monday (March 31).
27-year-old Matthias Schweighoefer, winner of several prestigious German acting awards, plays Richthofen.
"It was a fantastic roll to play and in one of the best films of its genre that I've ever seen. It's crazy," Schweighoefer told Reuters Television in Berlin on Monday (March 31).
"And that's why it took so long to make, with all of the computer animation that was needed. It's unbelievable. It's certainly worth seeing."
The 2008 German-British co-production was directed by Nikolai Muellerschoen.
"Should we have made a film about war hero? And more to the point should we tell the story of German war heroes? I think we should,"
Von Richthofen achieved at least 80 aerial warfare victories when he served as a German pilot at the age of only 25.
In 1916, Richthofen became a member of the newly installed fighter squadron where his talent was quickly spotted by superiors who made him train other young pilots in Richthofen's own unit.
Because of his bright red Fokker DR-I plane, Richthofen was alternately named 'Red Baron', 'Red Devil', 'Le petit rouge' and 'Le diable rouge'.
Richthofen was widely regarded as a man of morale who stuck to a certain code of honour and he and the young pilots he trained became national heroes.
The Red Baron's nephew, Manfred von Richthofen, also attended the premiere which took place almost exactly 90 years after his uncle's death.
"He still plays a major roll in the German airforce today,"
Richthofen said of his legendary relative, adding: "In fact a whole squadron is named after him. What I also find good is that even abroad he is though of so highly because where else in the history of war has someone been buried by the enemy with full military honours."
German production company Niama-Film had twenty-three WWI models of fighter planes made for the premiere of "The Red Baron" and some of the planes will be on display when the movie comes to German cinemas on April
The plane models will later be auctioned off for charity.
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