He is Catalan, son of an anarcho-syndicalist, but his land of exile suddenly comes under the Nazi boot.
On the Run from Destiny
A documentary film by Eberhard Spreng
with Firmo Ferrer i Casadevall
At the beginning of 1939 over 450,000 Spaniards fled to France on the run from General Franco’s troops. Among them was Firmo Ferrer, aged seventeen at the time. On his way into exile he met his first love, Blanca, whom he was to call Snow White. And then he made new friends. But after the Germans‘ victory he was sent to a camp for „undesirable foreigners“. He worked in the kitchens of a part of the camp where 1500 Jews were interned. His wanderings had just begun… When he was able to return to his own country, which was Spain still under Franco, he lost his fiancée, not through lack of love, but because he was the son of a Republican family. He had a „red stain“ on him which barred his future. Blanche, the addressee of his love letters, like a white leaf, the steam of a locomotive, the light reflected on the sea, became a memory, a symbol. An idea that disappeared… Firmo’s Story is one of the thousands of Catalan lives which bear witness to the historical reasons for the current Spanish conflict between Madrid and Barcelona.
„Dear Firmo, I am writing to you from Berlin, not very far from the square where the Nazis celebrated their first great military victory. On June 6, 1939 the bloodthirsty march of the Condor Legion thundered out of the loudspeakers. 4,000 soldiers were gathered. They were about 25,000 to have bombarded Republican Spain and thus make the victory of General Franco’s troops possible. No Condor Legion, no Franco, and without Franco a different history of Spain, a different Europe. I would dearly like to continue our conversations about your experiences during those years in Catalonia and France. And may I suggest that we use the language of your exile: French. Kind regards, E.S.“
55 min. (52 min.); Colour / black and white; 16×9; DCP, other on request.
Language: French; subtitles: German or English.
Contact: Eberhard Spreng, Mulackstrasse 8, 10119 Berlin, Germany, firstname.lastname@example.org, +49 – 172 39 14 155