Leni Riefenstahl (1902–2003) was a film director, producer, and screenwriter best known for her Nazi-era films. Two of them, Triumph of the Will and Olympia, attracted international attention.  Whereas Triumph of the Will chronicles the 1934 Nazi Party Rally in Nuremberg, Olympia follows the 1936 Olympic Games in Berlin. The male figure portrayed in this poster for Riefenstahl’s The Gods of the Stadium [Die Götter des Stadions], a segment from Part 2 of Olympia, personifies the revitalized German nation that Adolf Hitler and the Nazi regime hoped to showcase at the 1936 Games. Like Riefenstahl’s film, the poster idealizes athleticism, youth, and competitiveness. Films of this sort offered excellent propaganda opportunities, not least when it came to popularizing the Nazi regime’s body culture.

Film Poster for The Gods of the Stadium (1938)


Source: Film poster for The Gods of the Stadium by Leni Riefenstahl (part 2), 1938. USHMM, Collections: 1990.333.41