The 1977 film Soldaat van Oranje starring Rutger Hauer, is to be included in a newly created Dutch list of memorable documentary works and archives as part of the the Unesco Memory of the World register.
The aim of the Unesco project, launched in the 1990s, is to ‘preserve and protect’ documentary heritage from countries around the world.
The Dutch list so far is made up of eight ‘exceptional’ libraries and archives, such as the NIOD wartime letters and diaries, and ‘uniquely Dutch’ digital files, such as the first web pages made by internet pioneer XS4All.
‘We want to bring vulnerable and special archives and works to the attention of the world, to preserve them and make them accessible. That includes modern and popular cultural documents,’ Tim de Haan of the Dutch Unesco committee told the NRC.
Film producer Rob Houwer (84) told the Telegraaf he was sad Rutger Hauer, who played the lead in the film and who died in 2019, ‘could not be there to see the Unesco accolade.’ The film is based on the story of Erik Hazelhoff Roelfzema (1917 – 2007), son of a rich coffee merchant, who became active in the Dutch underground as a student.
The international Unesco heritage list already lists 16 items with a Dutch link, including the diaries of Anne Frank and the archive of Aletta Jacobs. Contenders for the separate Dutch list can put in a request to be included every two years.
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