December 29th, 2008
06:00 PM ET

Fake Holocaust memoir

Program Note: Be sure to watch Randi Kaye’s full report tonight on AC360° at 10pm ET.

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/SHOWBIZ/06/12/celebrity.power/art.oprah.winfrey.jpg caption="Oprah duped again?"]

Randi Kaye | Bio
AC360° Correspondent

Something didn’t seem right to some Jewish scholars when they first heard about Herman and Roma Rosenblat’s love story.

It was first made public over a decade ago. Here’s how it went: Herman was in a concentration camp in Germany during the holocaust. Roma would come every day to toss him apples over the fence to help him survive. Then, about 15 years later, they’re set up on a blind date in New York City. They realize they have a history, chalk it up to fate, and get married. They just celebrated 50 years in June.

Their story has been on Oprah, a children’s book has been written about it, a movie is in the works, and a book was due to come out in February.

Until….. Herman Rosenblat came clean and told his agent and Penguin’s Berkley Books that the story wasn’t true.

Tonight, on AC360°, you’ll hear from a Professor of Holocaust studies who did much of the research to help disprove this story. He says it would have been impossible for this couple to meet daily, unnoticed, at the concentration camp’s fence. He says the fence was right next to the SS guard’s booth and it would have been certain death. He also proved in his research that Roma Rosenblat, a polish catholic, was actually in hiding during the war with her family 200 miles away from the camp where Herman Rosenblat was imprisoned. Go figure!

Why’d Rosenblat make all this up? He isn’t talking, but issued a statement through his agent that explains it. He says his mother came to him in a dream and told him to tell his story of survival in the camps. He says he “wanted to bring happiness to people” and “remind them not to hate.” He added, “I now know it was only a dream.”

His publisher is demanding he pay back the money they advanced him for the book, but the movie is still going to be made, as a fiction feature film.

Rosenblat has promised to donate all the profits from the film to a Holocaust survivor charity.

Can you believe Oprah was duped again and this couple has been telling this tale for decades???

Filed under: Randi Kaye
soundoff (5 Responses)
  1. Mary V., Salt Lake City, UT

    Too much lying going on in our world. Sad, indeed.

    December 29, 2008 at 8:02 pm |
  2. EJ (USA)

    That's just wrong.

    Plus they had Oprah caught up in another fake story. She's going to stop promoting everybody's books altogether!

    December 29, 2008 at 7:17 pm |
  3. Annie Kate

    I'm sorry the couple felt the need to embellish their story of survival because now what has the attention and what they will be remembered for is this made up story – not the fact that she survived in hiding from Nazis that would have killed her and her family or that he was one of the few to have survived a concentration camp. I do not see why they ever thought they needed to embellish that very human story.

    December 29, 2008 at 6:48 pm |
  4. Michelle D. Fonthill,Ont

    It is unbelievable that this horrble time in history of the Holocaust would be used and manipulated this way .It brings such a diservice to all who were suvivours and those who died in the camps . This is all about profit from misery and pain .

    December 29, 2008 at 6:34 pm |
  5. Jackie

    Sad! Sad! and Very Sad!
    Such people mess up the opportunities for the real life stories! So who do we believe? 15 minutes of fame have robbed people of moral values and intergrity! Such a shame! Shame on you, Herman and Roma and at such an age!
    The Oprah show producers have to do extra homework on some of these guests. I don't know what kind of screening system the show producers have, but it's not effective at the moment.

    December 29, 2008 at 6:23 pm |