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- 91 min.
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Vital to understanding both the film’s narrative and its production history is the fact that the Bulgarians demanded their Parliament and King defy the German order to deport the Bulgarian Jews, thereby saving nearly 50,000 people, despite the German occupation.
Stars’ distribution history is a testament to Cold War politics. The first DEFA/Bulgarian co-production, it received prizes in Edinburgh and Vienna, and won the Special Jury Prize at the 1959 Cannes film festival but had to be billed as Bulgarian because of the Hallstein Doctrine—a measure used by Bonn to deny the status of the GDR as an independent state by simply not recognizing its existence.
This and Undertan must be the most officially listed GDR movies with 3 lists.
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In 3 official lists
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This movie ranks #21 in Doubling the Canon
This movie ranks #32 in ICM Forum's 500<400
This movie ranks #75 in Kinemathekverbund's The 100 Most Important German Films