Cameras are currently rolling in Buenos Aires, where a host of Jewish actors have joined Sir Ben Kingsley, who is playing the leading role in a movie about the most famous Mossad operation of all time.
Sir Ben, whose previous roles include Mahatma Gandhi in Gandhi, and Shoah victim Itzhak Stern in Schindler’s List, is portraying Adolf Eichmann, one of the key architects in the Holocaust. The movie – “Operation Finale”, tells the story of the 1960 Israeli capture of the senior SS officer, who was hiding under an assumed name in Argentina.
The Jewish actors in the film include Michael Aronov, who plays the part of Mossad agent Zvi Aharoni, and Israeli actor Lior Raz, who has been cast as Issur Harel, the legendary first director of the Mossad. French Jewish actress Mélanie Laurent plays the part of Hannah, while Nick Kroll, the Jewish comedian, is playing the role of Rossi.
Oscar Isaac, who is not Jewish, is playing the role of Peter Malkin, one of the Mossad’s most successful agents.
Malkin, who later became the Israeli intelligence service’s chief of operations, was part of the team dispatched to Buenos Aires in 1960 to capture Eichmann. He actually seized Eichmann, calling out "momentito, señor" as he approached him, before putting him in a neck-lock, forcing him to the ground and pushing him in the getaway car, which sped away to the Mossad safe house just outside the Argentinian capital. Eichmann was transported to Israel, where he was put on trial, found guilty of crimes against humanity, and hanged.
Aharoni, who was born in Germany and migrated to mandate Palestine before World War Two, spoke perfect German. He initially identified the man in Argentina going under the alias of “Ricardo Klement” as being Eichmann. He eventually moved to England, where he died in 2012.
“Operation Finale” is due to film in Buenos Aires for another month. The release date for the film has not yet been confirmed.