The Hound of the Grossglöckner

During World War II, loyal German publishers quietly shifted the nationality of Sherlock Holmes from English to Austrian. The new detective, Sherlock Holzmann, lived at 221B Vielenstrasse in Vienna. Holmes’s associate and confidante, Dr. Watson, was turned into a Japanese manservant named Kato. (This nod to Germany’s Axis ally was reportedly ordered by propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels.)

The Hound of the Grossglöckner, the first film made from the Holzmann stories, was directed by Leni Riefenstahl and starred actor Conrad Veidt as the irascible detective. Veidt defected to America in 1941, and from 1942-44 Holzmann was played by Werner Klemperer. After war’s end the Holzmann character became Holmes once again, but Kato was recycled by emigrant cartoonists as a sidekick for superhero The Green Hornet. Klemperer was blackballed in Hollywood until he resurfaced as Colonel Klink in the sitcom Hogan’s Heroes.

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