From cinemablend, Tom Cruise and the German government are back for round three of their tennis match, which seems appropriate with the Wimbledon tournament going on. As a quick recap: Tom Cruise wants to film his next movie, Valkyrie in Germany. The movie is about German officer Claus Schenk Graf von Stauffenberg, who attempted to assassinate Adolf Hitler. Cruise and director Bryan Singer want to film in the German Bendlerblock building, where Stauffenberg was executed and where a memorial for the officer currently stands. The problem is, the building is in use by the German Ministry of Defense.
The other problem is Tom Cruise is a loudmouthed advocate of the “church” of Scientology, which the German government views as a totalitarian business practice and not a religious practice.
Last week the Ministry of Defense stated in no uncertain terms that Cruise would not be permitted to film in Germany. Later in the week another spokesperson for another department stepped forward and said they were welcoming the movie in Germany, and that the Defense Ministry was not in charge of who got to use government buildings. They also quickly tried to sidestep the whole disapproval of Scientology thing, despite the fact that it’s been a big deal in the past.
Now it’s round three and, guess what - Valkyrie is back to being banned in Germany. Now it’s the Finance Ministry’s turn to speak and they are denying permission to film in the Bendlerblock building. Maintaining that this isn’t about Scientology, the Finance Ministry claims it is trying to maintain the integrity of the memorial for Stauffenberg, stating the place is “a place of remembrance and mourning, [which] would lose dignity if we were to exploit it as a film set” according to Variety.
The article also points out, however, that Jo Baier’s TV movie “Operation Valkyrie” (the code name of the assassination operation) was allowed to film in the Bendlerblock building, making it hard to believe this is only about dignity. Of course, the Bendlerblock building isn’t the only location being denied. A police station has also been rejected after consideration on the impact filming would have on a functional station. Basically, the message is becoming increasingly clear: Valkyrie is not welcome in Germany. Added to this is the idea that apparently Stauffenberg’s son has also rejected the idea of the project, stating that Cruise needed to “keep his hands off my father.” Wow… that’s harsh. So, we’re back to Germany banning the film. Who wants to start the betting pool on how long it’ll be until the next reversal takes place?