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University Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Olin Film Archive

A guide to the Chuck Olin Film Archive, part of which has been digitized by the History, Philosophy, and Newspaper Library at the University of Illinois.

First-hand Accounts from the Jewish Brigade

Chuck Olin began his film career in Chicago in the late 1960's, co-producing with his partners at The Film Group award-winning documentaries about the social unrest of the times.

In 1974, Mr. Olin formed his own production company, Chuck Olin Associates, Inc., and for more than twenty-five years produced and directed documentaries across a wide-range of subject areas while also producing special project films for corporate, healthcare, educational and institutional clients.

Mr. Olin passed away in January 2005. His obituary from the Chicago Tribune can be read on his website.

Olin's Documentary Work


Mr. Olin was Executive Producer and co-writer of the hour-long film, IS JERUSALEM BURNING? Myth, Memory and the Battle of Latrun. The film provides a penetrating examination of the ill-fated battles of Latrun, fought during Israel's 1948 War of Independence, and offers insights into the darkly divisive myths spawned by those battles. Through the lens of Latrun, the film offers a deeper understanding of the power and influence of memory and myth in a country such as Israel, and how those impact attitude and policy in Israel's ability to forge a true peace with its neighbors.

Prior to Is Jerusalem Burning?, Mr. Olin produced and directed In Our Own Hands: The Hidden Story of the Jewish Brigade in WWII, a full-length documentary more than three years in the making. The film tells the little known story of the exploits and adventures of the Jewish Brigade, the only all-Jewish fighting unit in World War II. In Our Own Hands premiered on PBS in April of 2000, and is in wide release in dozens of countries around the world. Currently, Miramax Films is considering a feature film based on the story of the Brigade.

For More Information


Chuck Olin Films Website.

Biography of Chuck Olin (From which most of the information on this page is taken).

Jacobs, Scott. "The Gentleman Filmmaker." The Week Behind: Inside the Chicago Art Scene. Feb. 4, 2005. Article no longer available. View on the Internet Archive: http://web.archive.org/web/20080720113114/http://www.theweekbehind.com/articles/olin.html .