December 4, 2005

Spielberg talks about film ‘Munich’ in magazine

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Director Steven Spielberg said his
new film "Munich," the story of Israel's revenge for the
killing of its athletes by Palestinian guerrillas at the 1972
Olympics, is "a prayer for peace," Time magazine reported on

Leaders of Jewish and Muslim groups as well as diplomats
and foreign policy experts will preview the film before its
December 23 U.S. opening but Spielberg has shied away from the
media hype and costly promotional campaigns that typically
precede a big-studio movie.

The magazine said its interview was the only one the
Oscar-winning director planned to do before the release of the
film, which focuses on Israel's response after a Palestinian
group took members of its Olympic team hostage at the Munich
Games. Eleven Israeli athletes, five kidnappers and one German
policeman were killed.

"Somewhere inside all this intransigence there has to be a
prayer for peace," Spielberg told Time, "because the biggest
enemy is not the Palestinians or the Israelis. The biggest
enemy in the region is intransigence."

The director also discussed another film project he is
initiating in February, in which he is buying 250 video cameras
and players and giving them to Israeli and Palestinian children
so that they can make movies about their own lives.

"Not dramas," Spielberg said, "just little documentaries
about who they are and what they believe in, who their parents
are, where they go to school, what they had to eat, what movies
they watch, what CDs they listen to."

Spielberg said the children will then exchange the videos
with one another.

"That's the kind of thing that can be effective, I think,
in simply making people understand that there aren't as many
differences that divide Israelis and Palestinians. Not as human
beings anyway," he said.

The director told Time he's very proud of the fact that
"Munich" doesn't demonize either the Israeli or Palestinian

"We don't demonize our targets," Spielberg said. "They're
individuals. They have families."

The movie stars Eric Bana, Daniel Craig and Oscar winner
Geoffrey Rush.