It Happened In Paris: WWII Nazi Occupation (1942 & 1944) | British Pathé

Watch this stunning footage of Nazi occupied France captured surreptitiously by a brave Pathé cameraman, Gaston Madru, from 1942 to 1944. It gives a snapshot of everything from swastikas flying from French buildings to the German retreat from France in 1944.

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(FILM ID:1125.05)
Cataloguer’s note: this item was originally in gazette number 44/74.

Item title reads – It happened in Paris.


Various shots of Pathe cameraman Gaston Madru in 1942, he conceals his camera in a bicycle basket and rides through the streets of nazi occupied Paris. He films nazi flags flying from buildings and offices of the Todt organisation which runs slave labour camps in Germany. M/S of a cinema for German soldiers only. Various shots of bread queues. Various shots at the Longchamps horse races where nazi officers and soldiers are present.

Various shots as French ambassador and nazi collaborator Debrinon speaks at a nazi rally, pan across nazi officers. Also present are Marcel Deat and Comte de Chambrun, now under arrest. Various shots of wounded and repatriated prisoners of war exchanged for workers pressed into German industry. Various shots of a nazi rally in city hall with swastikas on the walls, a man makes a speech and the camera pans around the assembled nazis.

Various shots as Laval returns from Germany with German Minister at Gare du Nord. He gets into a car. Various shots of nazis at Tomb of Unknown Warrior at Arc de Triomphe. Fighting breaks out in the streets as Parisians object to their presence there. Various shots of militia men and nazis standing around.

Various shots as Madru films the burning factories of the Renault plant after the R.A.F. works in 1942. Various shots as German troops begin to retreat as allies advance in 1944. Resistance posters are put up in the open and the French flag is flown again. A couple kiss in the street. Everyone cheers as the allies drive through. Various shots of gunfire between the allies and remaining Germans. People run out of the way and take cover. Crowds cheer and wave afterwards.

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