German officer of 'Pianist' fame honoured in Israel

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Wilm Hosenfeld, the German officer made famous by the film 'The Pianist', has been recognised by Israel for his role in helping Jews.

Yad Vashem, Israel's Holocaust memorial and museum, recognised Hosenfeld posthumously as "Righteous Among the Nations", an acknowledgement for those who aided Jews during the Holocaust.

Hosenfeld was made famous by Roman Polanski's celebrated 2002 film The Pianist, which was based on the true story of the Polish musician Wladyslaw Szpilman, played by Adrien Brody.

Szpilman had written to Yad Vashem, as well as in his diaries that became the basis for the film, that "in November 1944 Hosenfeld helped him find a hiding place and that he provided blankets, food and moral support" while the Jewish musician hid in Warsaw.

The award, announced in a a statement issued by Yad Vashem, came after new material emerged, including Hosenfeld's personal diaries and letters to his wife "which clarify his consistent stance against the Nazi policy toward the Jews".

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