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U-turn on German memorial site ban

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Tom Cruise and the makers of Valkyrie, a film about the failed plot to assassinate Adolf Hitler in 1944, have had a ban on shooting at a World War II memorial site reversed by the German government.

It was initially thought the ban was imposed due to Cruise’s Scientology beliefs; however it was later claimed that preserving the site’s dignity was the government’s main concern.

The Bendler Block building is now a memorial for Third Reich resistance fighters. A spokesman for the government’s defence ministry said the film appeared to show Germany in a good light, highlighting that “barbarism did not win”.

Tom Cruise plays Colonel Claus von Stauffenberg in the film, which is named after Operation Valkyrie, the codename for the plot.

The film company behind the movie, United Artists, welcomed the decision, adding it would “take special care to respect its dignity and keep our activities there within the guidelines laid down by the government”.

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