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Tom Cruise Gets Green Light for Bendlerblock

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Sep 14, 2007 | 9:52am EDT

Tom Cruise has finally been given permission by the German government to film at a World War II memorial site in Berlin for his new movie Valkyrie.

In the movie--also known as Rubicon--Cruise plays war hero Col. Claus von Stauffenberg, the soldier who led an unsuccessful plot in 1944 to assassinate Nazi dictator Adolf Hitler.

Director Bryan Singer had previously been banned from filming at the Bendlerblock, the site of von Stauffenberg's execution, because officials did not want the "dignity of the place" to be violated.

But on Friday, Germany's ministry of defense, Franz Josef Jung, reversed the decision, citing the movie's positive portrayal of the country for the change of heart.

Jung's spokesperson, Thomas Raabe, said that Valkyrie underlines the fact that "barbarism did not win, but rather a democratic Germany finally arose."

United Artists, the production company behind the film, expressed their "extreme gratitude" to the ministry of defense for the turnaround, pledging to "take special care to respect its dignity and keep our activities there within the guidelines laid down by the government."

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