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Monday, October 28, 2013

When Truman Censored First Hollywood Movie on Hiroshima--And Fired an Actor!

My recent piece at The Nation explores this amazing episode, which began after a screening in D.C.  67 years ago this week.  Oddly, what got it going was a letter from actress Donna Reed.  I explore the entire episode in my current e-book Hollywood Bomb.   Here's the opening of my article:  "One of the great tales of Hollywood censorship remains little known today, more than sixty-five years after it transpired. And who was right at the center of it? None other than President Harry S. Truman. He even got rid of the actor playing him in the MGM movie.

"The 1947 MGM film, The Beginning or the End, deserves special review, however, as its filming overlapped with the suppression of the only film footage shot in Hiroshima and Nagasaki by the US military and the Japanese and other moves to hide key evidence of what happened there. (See my book Atomic Cover-up.) Indeed, the MGM film emerged, after many revisions as a Hollywood version of the official Hiroshima narrative: the bomb was absolutely necessary to end the war and save American lives."

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