Anne Franks father Otto cut details from her original diary

Anne Franks father Otto cut details from her original diary

Liev Schreiber and Bel Powley talk A Small Light

A Small Light is the brand-new drama series retelling the story of Anne Frank (played by Billie Boullet) and her family from the perspective of the people who helped to hide the Jewish family from the Nazis during World War II.

The eight-part series is airing in a double-bill instalments weekly on National Geographic via Disney Plus and Hulu. A Small Light follows young secretary Miep Gies (Bel Powley) after her boss Frank Otto (Liev Schreiber) asks her for help to hide him and his family.

The show charts the dangers Miep, her husband Jan Gies (Joe Cole) and others go to in order to save the lives of their friends.

Although Anne doesn’t take centre-stage, A Small Light depicts the teen writing about her life cooped up in the attic with her family.

Tragically, Anne and her family were discovered by the Nazis with only Otto making it back from the concentration camps after the rest of the family including his daughters perished.

After the family was taken, Miep kept hold of the diaries but didn’t read them, eventually giving them back to Otto when he returned to Amsterdam in 1945.

What did Otto Frank cut from Anne Frank’s diary?

At first, Otto couldn’t bear to read the diaries but eventually did and shared them with friends and family, who said the world needed to see these important documents.

Anne’s diaries were published in 1947 with the title of the book being Het Achterhuis (The Secret Annex), which she came up with herself.

The teen had always hoped for her diary to be published and even set about re-writing some sections of it as she developed as a writer, becoming less harsh towards her mother and sections her sexuality.

Otto said how reading the diaries had shown him a different side of his daughter.

In 2000, it emerged Otto had withheld one of the entries from the diary in which Anne had been critical of her parents’ marriage.

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In 1986, another version of the diary was published to include Anne’s original entries, her revisions as well as Otto’s revisions and omissions.

Ray Donovan star Schreiber also opened up about his own research during for A Small Light, which had left him surprised.

“Yeah, the stuff Otto didn’t want in the diary was very interesting to me. I think it was really important to us to find some way to breathe new life into this story, to have a perspective that people hadn’t seen before. Because it’s so important for people to know these stories, particularly for a younger generation.”

He continued: “But for me, what Otto didn’t want published in the diary was particularly interesting. Anne’s writing about how her parents fought and how difficult it was.

“For me, it was only further evidence of the deep humanity that was at play in that world and in that world as you’re stuck in a room with eight people and you’re not getting along and you have to maintain something.”

He said about playing a real person: “It’s always tricky for me playing people who exist or who existed, mainly because there’s a sense of responsibility not only to the person but to their family and then to the millions of people who think they knew them and those expectations are hard.

“What I’ve learned over the years with doing it is just trying to be responsible for my piece of the narrative because that’s the part of the script I’ve been given because that’s the thing I’m responsible for.”

Adding: “Especially, doing it in Amsterdam, there was certainly the ghost of those characters in what they mean to people and what a story like this is, particularly now as we see these patterns of authoritarian regimes hoping up all over again.”

A Small Light airs on Disney+ on Mondays

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