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German Helmets in Hollywood


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https://www.usmilitariaforum.com/forums/index.php?/topic/287446-the-roaring-twenties-1939-film-german-trench-helmet/

 

This was originally posted back in March 2017 on the US MILITARIA FORUM

 

in the movie "THE ROARING TWENTIES" starring James Cagney, he's a World War One combat veteran and he brings home a souvenir for his friend in a scene when he's coming home from the war.

 

I thought it was interesting that they showed a scene with military collectables in an old movie, looks like collecting and bringing home souvenirs has always been popular

 

the helmet collecting started back around 1917 from returning soldiers bringing them back

 

only the first part of the movie is about his time in WW1, the rest is about gangsters / bootegging / Speakeasys during prohibition.

 

after giving the helmet to his friend, he says "I'll give it to my kid some day" so thats probably what happened to a lot of these helmets, they were probably given to kids to play with and ended up in the junk pile.

 

 

 

Time - Phrase

00:11:48 Oh, I'm glad you reminded me. Brought you a souvenir.

00:11:51 You needn't have done that. I didn't expect anything. What is it?

00:11:55 German trench helmet. Hope it fits.

00:11:57 I had an awful time finding a Heinie with your head size.

00:12:00 Say, that's swell.

roaring 20's.jpg

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George Halley: [the men are taking cover in a bombed-out farmhouse, shooting at German soldiers somewhere off-screen. Lloyd takes aim at a German soldier, but hesitates, then lowers his rifle] Whatsa' matta', "Harvard," did you lose the Heine?

 

Lloyd Hart: No... but he looks like a kid, about 15 years old.

 

George Halley

: -

[Aims his rifle and without any hesitation shoots the young German soldier]

 

George Halley: He won't be sixteen.

 

[Seconds later, a fellow soldier rushes in to tell them the war is over, the Armistice has been signed]

 

roaring20's3.jpg

 

Here's another -

 

German M35 or 40? used in the tv show RAT PATROL , the helmet looks like it was used by Spain because it has the front bracket for insignia and the show was filmed in Spain, so they would have had access to surplus for the prop dept.

 

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stratasfan

[Courtesy of "The Rooster"]

 

In the silent movie from 1925 "The Big Parade" The big guy with the wide eyes to the right in this photo...

He goes out on a mission alone, and on his way back to his lines, he stops and picks up several German helmets to bring back as souvenirs. The krauts hear the helmets clanking together and he gets blasted by machine gun fire in no mans land over his souvenirs.

Soldiers have always kept souvenirs I'm thinking it goes as far back as recorded time. I'l bet the Romans kept them.

etc etc etc. Pilots in ww1 would land near the aircraft they shot down and cut a piece off the victims aircraft........

....for a souvenir and as proof that they shot down the enemy.

Soldiers have always gathered plunder. Its as old as people.

 

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Here's where they find their buddy. Notice the German helmets laying next to him.

 

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stratasfan

[Courtesy of Bodes]

 

There's a famous picture of a large pile of German WW1 stahlhelms after the Armistice....Many did come to the United States and perhaps England as well....So really no surprise they wound up being used ad nauseam in war movies through the years following the Great War.

 

This guy appears to have a Spanish helmet as you can see what looks like a hole in the front where a clip would have been...It's also lacking the suspension pins found in the temple areas of true Wehrmacht helmets, seen on the other helmet in the picture....

 

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This guy is likely wearing the same style helmet....Bodes

 

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Here's a Spanish helmet with piece mounted to the front....

 

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They also may be BW (West German) helmets which used a wing nut that tightened on a threaded stud inside the dome area....Bodes

 

 

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stratasfan

[Courtesy of @patches]

 

Here's a same type worn in Hogan's Heroes, though Sergeant Schultz's was a real one, an M42, not sure if the tricolor shield decal was original though, those were ordered removed by the time they were made.

 

image.png.377c4a017b8f3e875d085761a72113

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stratasfan

[Courtesy of Bodes]

Quote

 

  On 10/2/2020 at 10:18 PM, patches said:

Here's a same type worn in Hogan's Heroes, though Sergeant Schultz's was a real one, an M42, not sure if the tricolor shield decal was original though, those were ordered removed by the time they were made.

 

 

Some M42's were double decaled....Polizei for instance....I agree Schultz (John Banner's) helmet and Luftwaffe decal appear to be original wartime production....However the tri-color has a noticeable white border, which denotes it as being a reproduction....

 

Original wartime M42 Army/Air Force helmets are said to have been issued in limited numbers, but 1940 regulations called for that decal (tri-color) to be covered or removed for the remainder of the war....This wasn't something that was always enforced however...Bodes

 

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Mock Up Fallschirm Helmets 1958 movie Darby's Rangers

 

Seen these two images from the 1958 movie Darby's Rangers, think this is the Anzio sequence, at first they might of been those Bundesgrensschutz helmets, but seems to be mock ups, note the rivet placements, even the chin straps are off, see the loops on them. Note too the ridiculously oversized Tricolor Shield common to 40s and 50s movies where helmets are worn, usually M16-M18. Also the Y Straps are not Y Straps, just a bunch of unknown straps connected into a Y

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post-34986-0-30825800-1491527762_thumb.jpg.eb415eb838eff2af9f9d86a3e2064175.jpg

Well here's a ton of original M16s in America, that what was used in the 1930 cinematic classic All Quite on the Western Front. Even think all those Picklehauben were original too, if used though with repro helmet covers (coarse wool like material as opposed to the original smooth material). Indeed real M16/M18 helmets show up continuously in movies into the 50s where Germans Troops are portrayed, even WWII Germans image.png.f866521cfc83d3b8affdd869b39255f8.png, to name but three WWII ones of the more well known ones out a lot, A Walk in the Sun, Go For Broke, To Hell and Back.

 

Pity there weren't anymore around when they made the 1979 remake  image.png.89b2ebb95d9c88c70762da03912e63bd.png Awful right! They got the overall size and shape down, but everything else image.png.87b795622d1a20f9b7d37c9ba1e672d0.png.

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Hey got this Still Capture of the M16/M18 in use in the 50s for WWII Germans 

 

To Hell and Back, the infamous ambush on the road scene in Sicily.

post-34986-0-36516700-1492831260_thumb.jpg

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And finally found that shot of the mud covered German with the MP40, wearing M18 like they all are, at the Farmhouse scene in To Hell and Back, he has a face that when I first seen the movie way way back when, and always after when I would see it, reminded me of Frankenstein image.png.b880551db419272bde893396a6fb4778.png

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And this one of a M16 being worn, normally they're M18s, the movie is GO FOR BROKE, the scene where the English speaking German, speaking admittedly with a German accent, tries to break in to a Nisei unit's radio net. Note that sidecap he's wearing, cap may be an original, can't really tell, but there's that oversized out of proportion cap eagle, with a too broad inverted chevron with no cockade image.png.155b3ca1c9046e474325ba7e2a2fa665.png

 

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Hey I remember they used them in SAHARA, stands to reason, as this film was started to be  shot in January 1943, don't think the army was sending home captured German M35 and M40 helmets just yet image.png.d6390cbe7b656db160af22d4cca96c7e.png,  Which brings up the question as to why these WWI types were always used in WWII  movies or TV series in what remained of the 40s through the 50s even into the 60s, you think by then lots of actual German WWII helmets would of found they way to Hollywood, but it doesn't seem to be the case right, they used props of WWII looking helmets even, like in The Longest Day , and that was shot as we know on location, what they couldn't come up with even a couple dozen real WWII German helmets image.png.d6390cbe7b656db160af22d4cca96c7e.png .

 

Note the oversized Eagle, I guess it's hand painted.

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Then was COMBAT, forgot about that, they did use the M16/M18s, but as far as I can see from an image search, but used Mock Ups more often than not, again, what no real ones, WWII M35-M40, M42,they simply  couldn't lay they're hands on any!, maybe they really didn't know the difference???? curious right.

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Two helmets from the 1980 movie The Big Red One.

 

One on Siegfried Rauch, a real M42, chin strap and all albeit with a phony Eagle Shield Decal.

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And one, probably a prop, that potato masher certainly is, as is the boot its shoved in.

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And lets not forget Franz Liebkind  in the 1967 movie The Producers 1032576021_emoticonlaugh.png.3525ca6ec2efac986a82d5300a98638a.png

 

Kenneth Mars as Franz Liebkind, he's wearing a real M40 Helmet albeit with a incorrectly attached chin strap, which maybe will be a non german one, hard to tell..

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And this one, this may be a Real one, an M35 or M40, looks kind blurry because it an Action Still, thus blurring the Split Pin head and Vent Hole. This from the River Crossing scene, and this SS Man gets it shortly as you recall. Though that SS Red Swastika Shield Decal we say was added just like the Mock Up one above, which by September 1944 was not worn really anymore in the Waffen SS.

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A couple of real ones from the 1958 movie The Young Lions. M35s, though without Eagle Decal which would of been worn really, as these are from the France 1940 sequence.

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A bunch of M42s, plus one M35 with it's decals scrapped off from the 1958 movie A Time to Live a Time to Die, no doubt there were other M35s and M40s to be seen on all the other supporting actors and  extras.

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Ernst Graeber (John Gavin) in his Tunic with  Elizabeth Kruse (Liselotte Pulver) the girl he meets and marries when he's home on leave. Graeber is either  an Africa Korps or Tunisia Veteran, as he wears the AFRIKA Cuff Title. guess he makes it out of Africa because of wounds and just gets reassigned to Russia to a standard Infantry Division, as he should be  a Panzergrenadier., unless he was in that one standard Infantry Division in Tunisia, the 334th Infantry Division, that ribbon above the pocket can remember what it is.

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The Flak Girl from Downfall wearing an M42, her character's name was Inge Dombrowski, a Berliner of Polish extraction. she is played incredibly enough by a German speaking Russian born girl named Elena Vladimirovna Zelenskaya, Stage Name Elena Dreyden

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