Monday, 5 April 2010


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PACO ELVIRA con su foto de GARBO, fotografiado por NELSON SOUTO


Last Thursday, my friend, the journalist Xavier Vinader phoned me: "Paco. Today at 10 pm at Verdi's cinemas is the premiere of the documentary on Garbo. I've booked a ticket for you. Can you come? “
I had class at IDEP till 10 pm, but after talking with the students we finished just 10 minutes before ten, so I could get there in time.
In 1984, Xavier Vinader and I, accompanied by a team of TV3, traveled through Portugal, France and England to do a story about Joan Pujol, Garbo, for Interviu magazine (we published 6 chapters).
An English journalist, Nigel West, had discovered Joan Pujol in Venezuela. This Catalan, whose code name was Garbo, was the most important spy of the Second World War. He managed to convince the Germans that the Normandy landing was a hoax to throw them off and that the real landing would be at Calais. When the Germans discovered the truth, it was too late and the bridgehead was established.

The thesis of the documentary is that if the invasion had been rejected, would have lengthened the war, at least a couple of years and in that time period the Germans probably would have arranged the manufacture of the atomic bomb that was far advanced. Hence the title: Garbo, the man who saved the world. The excellent documentary, directed by Edmon Roch, is shot in Castilian, Catalan and English, with subtitles, and where Xavier Vinader plays a prominent role talking about Garbo.

In May 1989, Nelson Souto and Elizabeth Barbot published a report in el Periodico de Catalunya Sunday magazine titled Photographers, the eye that sees you. In it appeared several photographers along to our most iconic photos. "Nelson chose for my picture the photo I took of Garbo in the allied cemetery next to the beaches of Normandy. The other photographers that emerged in this report were: Francesc Català Roca, Lluis Salom, Xavier Miserachs, Colita and Anna Turbau.

This documentary film is shown at Verdi's cinemas in Barcelona.

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