Erwin Leiser,73, who was born in Berlin to Jewish parents...

Deaths Elsewhere

August 27, 1996

Erwin Leiser,73, who was born in Berlin to Jewish parents, fled Hitler's Germany and went on to win praise for documentary filmmaking about the Nazi era, died of heart failure Thursday in Zurich, where he had lived since 1961.

His documentary feature film about the history of Germany under Hitler, entitled "Mein Kampf," was composed of clips from old newsreels and film obtained from both Allied and German sources.

The film appeared in 1960, went on to be shown in scores of countries -- it was a box-office hit even in West Germany -- and was applauded by the New York Times critic Vincent Canby as "an effective summation of the Nazi era as recorded on film." A West German newspaper, Westfalen-Blatt of Bielefeld, called it a "hard -- unbelievably hard" record of Hitler's political life and works.

John Phillips,81, a Life magazine photographer from the 1930s to the 1950s known for his war photos, died Thursday in New York.

Pub Date: 8/27/96

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