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Adolf Hitler

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"The guy is like a hypnotist — a madman who can make a whole country nuts."
Indiana Jones[src]

Adolf Hitler (also known as the "Führer") was a German politician the leader of Nazi Germany and described by Colonel Musgrove as being "obsessed with the occult," hence his interest in acquiring the Ark of the Covenant in 1936, the Holy Grail in 1938 and the Spear of Longinus in 1945.

BiographyEdit

"The Ark belongs in the Reich. Something of such antiquity belongs in Germany."
Adolf Hitler[src]

For four years, Corporal Adolf Hitler was courier during World War I. In 1923, Hitler and his fellow Nazis attempted to overthrow the German Weimar government. The Beer Hall Putsch failed and Hitler served nine months in prison for treason. While in prison, Hitler gained recognition through the publication of his autobiographical work Mein Kampf, which also expounded on his views of National Socialist ideology and Aryan racial superiority. His views attracted many other Germans who had felt betrayed by the weakening of Germany in the Treaty of Versailles.

In 1929, the Wayua leader Maleiwa sought to entice Hitler into an alliance over the power of the alicorn, planning to later betray him in place of his own ambitions of global supremacy. Maleiwa, however, was stopped by Indiana Jones, before a meeting could take place.

The 1930s saw the National Socialist German Workers' Party gain political power, and Hitler became Reich Chancellor of Germany. He worked to remove many of the democratic institutions in Germany, proclaiming himself "Führer" after President Paul von Hindenburg died, and sought to rebuild the German industrial and military base, and began programs to harass and eliminate those who he felt were contaminating German society: Jews, Gypsies, communists, homosexuals and political dissidents. After the formation his army, in which was included his right-hand man Heinrich Himmler, the Nazis; he renounced Germany as the Nazi Germany. Apart from this, he created various Nazi divisions, like the Wehrmacht, the Gestapo, the Ahnenerbe, the Schutzstaffel, etc.

His interest in the occult and in archaeological artifacts prompted Nazi research and recovery expeditions into artifacts to either support his views of Aryan racial superiority or to be used as weapons against Nazi enemies, like the United States of America or the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. For this reason, he founded the division of the Third Reich Special Antiquities Collection, whose most important members were the Gestapo agent Arnold Ernst Toht and the doctor Matthias Jäger, who were extremely loyals to him.

Hitler met with archaeologist René Emile Belloq in 1936 to hire his services in acquiring the lost Ark of the Covenant under the orders of his fellow Colonel Herman Dietrich.[1] However, the operation ended with the deaths of many Nazis, including Belloq, Toht and Dietrich.[2] After Indiana Jones thwarted Hitler's plans on numerous occasions, including his desire to claim the Ark, the Führer personally assigned Hans Degen to assassinate Jones but the attempt ended in failure.[3]

Hitler Indiana Jones

Hitler signs for Jones.

In 1938, Hitler hired American industrialist Walter Donovan along Austrian agent Elsa Schneider to find the Holy Grail. That same year, Hitler was presiding over a bookburning rally in Berlin outside the Institute of Aryan Culture. As he was being escorted from the forum, he came face to face with a man in a Nazi officer's uniform who held a book in his hands. Not knowing the man was a disguised Indiana Jones or that the book was the Grail diary his agents needed to use to find the Holy Grail, Hitler took the book, motioned one of his aides for a pencil, signed the book, and returned it to the startled 'officer' before continuing on his way. At the end, one day after the rally, after Hitler discovered that both Donovan and Schneider, along his fellow Colonel Ernst Vogel, perished in his attempt to find the Holy Grail, he understood that his attempt to find the grail had failed.[4]

Seeking to expand Germany, he first used diplomatic means to gain territories in building a greater German state, then invaded Poland in 1939, initiating World War II. In 1945, Hitler appeared in Professor Jones' vision where he claimed ownership for the Spear of Destiny.[5] Later that year, with the defeat of Germany likely, and Berlin near invasion, he committed suicide for good inside his bunker.

Behind the scenesEdit

Adolf Hitler was portrayed by the late and uncredited Michael Sheard in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. Sheard had previously played Oskar Schomburg in Raiders of the Lost Ark (in which he originally auditioned for the role of Major Toht, which was given to his friend Ronald Lacey).[6] Sheard also appeared in George Lucas' Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back (as Admiral Ozzel) with Harrison Ford and Julian Glover. Sheard later expressed his desire to play a different role in the then untitled Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, but his passing in 2005 prevented this.[7]

During the development of the film's original script, written by Jeffrey Boam, Indiana Jones was originally going to not have an encounter with Hitler face to face. Instead, Indy would see him from afar. In addition, it was originally planned that Indy would put Elsa Schneider inside Hitler's car trunk so that she would not raise the alarm.[8]

As an interest fact, Sheard had already played Hitler several times - in the TV movie Rogue Male (1976); in a two-part episode of the TV series The Tomorrow People (1978), entitled "Hitler’s Last Secret"; and in the TV movie The Dirty Dozen: The Next Mission (1985) - and would go on to play him one more time, in the documentary Hitler of the Andes (2003). He also played Heinrich Himmler (who was portrayed by his late friend Ronald Lacey in Last Crusade) three times in his career.

Contrary to popular thought, the real Hitler was never a huge fan of the occult. Another possible anachronism is that it's said by some that Hitler was left-handed but he can be seen signing Henry Walton Jones, Senior's Grail Diary with his right hand. However, evidence has shown with the real Hitler signing, writing and even bowling with his right hand.

Jager

Matthias Jäger from Indiana Jones and the Iron Phoenix.

LucasArts originally planned to resurrect Hitler for the plot of Indiana Jones and the Iron Phoenix, their intended follow-up to their popular Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis video game, but the game was cancelled, so Dark Horse Comics adpated its story in as a comic. In the original Iron Phoenix story, former Nazi scientist and doctor Matthias Jäger revives Hitler with the Philosopher's Stone two years after World War II. However, the Führer returns from the grave malformed and kills Jäger for bringing him back with no military to fight with. Indiana Jones later tricks Hitler into destroying himself with the Philosopher's Stone (a fate which would later go to Jäger in the comic). In the Iron Phoenix comic, Hitler doesn't appear physically (although is mentioned). Instead, a disfigured Jäger bears a strong resemblance to him.

During the development of the fourth Indy film, Frank Darabont's script, then Indiana Jones and the City of the Gods, included an appearance by Hitler as part of an alien vision to German doctor Von Grauen who seeks the return of the "glory" created by the Nazis. Hitler's form grants Von Grauen's wish by draining his life away.

AppearancesEdit

SourcesEdit

Notes and referencesEdit

External links Edit

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