BERLIN – Despite calls by some German officials to ban Bryan Singer’s World War II drama “Valkyrie” from shooting at government locations – due to Tom Cruise’s ties to Scientology – the project is getting plenty of support from the local film industry and looks likely to get the greenlight from authorities to film at historical sites here.
…The courtyard in which Stauffenberg and his fellow conspirators were shot is now a memorial, but the building in which it’s located, the Bendlerblock, also houses part of the German Ministry of Defense.
That, and not Cruise’s affiliation to Scientology, poses the main hurdle to a film permit for Singer and his crew, according to Dirk Kuehnau, head of the Bundesanstalt fuer Immobilienaufgaben (BIMA), the company in charge of government buildings.
“In this country we have constitutionally guaranteed rights,” Kuehnau said. “Articles four and five of the constitution protect freedom of faith and creed and freedom of expression. I don’t think those rights would be denied a film actor.”
… Contrary to earlier press reports, the Defense Minister has not banned the project from shooting at the site. In fact, the Defense Ministry, which only leases the building, does not have the right to grant or reject filming permits – that duty lies with the BIMA.
Alright Germany, you’re back in my good graces. Especially when you specifically mention constitutional freedom of faith. Thank goodness, because defending Scientologists was really beginning to wear me out.