Documentary TV series 'Tito – the Last Witnesses of the Testament'

Who was Josip Broz Tito

Fitzroy Maclean, the head of the British Military mission in Yugoslavia during the World War II declared: 'If anyone represents the child of the 20th century, our ebullient 20th century, than that's certainly Josip Broz Tito. We may like Tito or don't. Some people like him. We may like the 20th century. Some people don't like it. But they exist together – that man and that century', concluded Maclean.

Josip Broz Tito (1892 – 1980) was a well-known Yugoslav politician, statesman and military leader, the only major 20th century statesman who won the war against two great totalitarian regimes - against Nazi-fascism and Stalinism, and afterwards becoming the founder and the greatest authority of the Non-Aligned Movement, together with Egyptian president Nasser and Indian Prime Minister Nehru. After the World War II, Tito was the head of the State of Yugoslavia for 35 years undisputedly enjoying high international reputation.

Tito was the only leader of the anti-fascist coalition, who directly participated in war operations. Tito was the only communist who dared to disagree to Stalin, in 1948 he told the historical 'No' to Stalin. He initialized development stages of association's and work's self-management, so that Yugoslavia achieved the high level of Labour Law. Yugoslavia became out of the undeveloped agrarian country, the secondary developed European country. Yugoslav Army was considered for the third largest Army in Europe.

Tito interceded for the piece in the world, peaceful and active co-existence, not involving in domestic policy of sovereign countries, he encouraged anticolonial forces in Africa and Asia, as also the struggle of poor and opression of people for social and national emantipation.

He was the first communist leader who met Pope – Paul VI.Tito has been nominated for the Nobel prize for peace, he is one of the nominees who lost the Nobel Peace Prize award just for one voice.

About the importance of Josip Broz Tito speaks his funeral itself , that was the biggest statesman's funeral in the 20th century . According to the Eurovision's measures, Tito's funeral was the most watched TV broadcast after the first moon landing.

During the Tito's leadership, people of Yugoslavia lived a half of a century in constant piece, which was the first time in their millennial history. Ten years after his death started the murderous Balcanic war and Yugoslavia crumbled into the six States.

About TV series 'Tito – the Last Witnesses of the Testament'

Documentary TV series 'Tito – the Last Witnesses of the Testament' of film director Lordan Zafranović is an intimate story about the last witnesses Tito's testament and their lives and Tito's life in 13 episodes each of 56 minutes duration.

TV series is intimately based on exclusive stories from Tito's personal, political and stateman's life. Series doesn't pretend to show political pretension of Tito's evaluation and the historical scene in the 20th century. Close to the historical happenings conected to Tito, series aims to show Tito as an 'ordinary - unordinary man', without censorship and ideological commitment.

In series the time's challenges in which Tito lived aren't avoided, as also as all his answers, exactly the same as they were at that time. Documentary series project intetnion is Tito - the men of 'flesh and blood', less as undoubted splendor and charismatic cosmopolitan person of the 20th century.

The Last Witnesses of the Testament and epochs – the closest dependants, women, friends, associates and political antagonists talked about their stories honestly and openly with time distance, without secrets, ideology and myth, indirect – they talked about their destinies, especially experiences, adventures out of life and functioning with Tito. Animated memories evoke different kind of emotions out of theirs and Tito's turbulent personal and professional life. New interesting details from the stage of Tito's life in turbulent time of the 20th century are discovered, whose world and domestic historical circumstances have conduced forming of original pecurial and sometimes controversial Tito's personality, but Tito did backward a huge and very often crucial impact.

The history fact is, that Tito represents the only statesmen and soldier of 20th century, who conquered the two worst totalitarian regimes in history, Nazi-fascism and Stalinism and afterwards constituted the third world countries and the Non-Aligned Movement. Series especially edits to the role of Tito in some important, historically conditioned developments in Croatia: Bleiburg, Goli otok ('Barren island'), Hrvatsko proljeće ('Croatian spring')...

Although they belong to the past, Josip Broz Tito and the 20th century incontestable go together, not without the reason, they still induce significant interest of domestic and foreign world-wide publicity.


Producer and Director

Lordan Zafranović

Historical text

Ivo Goldstein


Mirjana Šuvar

Lordan Zafranović


Ninoslav Pavić

Concept and synopsis

Lordan Zafranović

Screenplay associates

Alfred Kolombo

Ivo Goldstein

Dialogue Leader with Witnesses

Mirjana Šuvar

Lordan Zafranović

Alfred Kolombo

Director's and Producer's agent Executive Producer

Olujka Jasprica


Alfi Kabiljo

Ilan Kabiljo


Alfred Kolombo

Director's assistant HTV

Antonina Ćuk



Synopsis - TV series 'Tito – the Last Witnesses of the Testament'

Episode 1 PROLOGUE

The first episode is the story about Tito's birth, his family, growth, education, first steps into the big world, first military experience at the Russian Front, first great love stories, first important friendships and first battles on the political 'Left' – until 1937. In this episode we meet the oldest Tito's associates, who we will be meeting through 13 episodes – we call them 'The witnesses of the Testament'. For the first time in this episode a very important witness of epochs opens up – Herta Hass, Tito's second wife, who talks about their great love from the first incidental meeting in Paris to their intimate mutual life and illegal activity on the political 'Left' in Zagreb at the time before the World War II. Although at that time Tito lives and works between Wien, Paris, Moscow and Prague, the center of his activity was contemporary Zagreb.

Episode 2 ILLEGAL

The second episode is about Tito's intriguing, love, political and cultural life in the period of 1936 to 1940. That was the time of illegal functioning of the Communist Party, Tito was in all respects great master and 'professor' of illegal itself. Tito had incredible danger-instinct, he was extremely skilled in avoiding deathrap and looking for new methods illegal activity and protection. Out of witness's declaration we find out, that after his coming out of the prison at the time of the greatest conspiration beside oorganising Party's activity and activity of preparing for forthcoming war of liberation, Tito met and spent time on daily basis with top Croatian artists and intellectuals in dr Silovic's lounge situated in Masarykova street, moreover he was their incontestable authority. As the existent member of lounge he enjoyed protection of Croatian Banus Šilović.

Episode 3 DAWN

In the third episode the witnesses of Tito's testament speak about the time of Tito's illegal activity of 1940 to 1941. That was the time of 5th World Conference that was taking place in Zagreb completely illegal, the time of military attack in the Kingdom of Yugoslavia, many demonstrations, promulgation of Independent State of Croatia, consolidation of Croatian fascist organization's terror, consolidation of Intellectual's and Communist's Resistance Movement, organizing of Party's forceful consolidation under the leadership of Josip Broz, to the final public acclamation and avocation of the people of Yugoslavia to stand up against the enemy. At that time Tito and Herta Hass as a couple live together in their own house around Zagreb, in May 1941 their son Mišo Aleksandar was born, concurrently when Tito was leaving from Zagreb to Belgrade because of armed outbreak that has been started.

Episode 4 OUTBREAK

In the fourth episode we meet Tito during wartime after the pronouncements of the outbreak in 1941 to the beginning of 1942. We are following egregious action releasing prisoners from Kerestinec prison, the case 'Kupinić', apropos Tito's independence from unconditional obediance to Comintern. The time of famine and extreme poverty accompanies, that follows recruitment of consideration and power inside the partisan's movement. In the occupied State cames into existence the first free territory – Republic of Užice, with lot's of mistakes and misses in organizing partisan's battle. Tito leads unsuccessful negotiations with Chetnik's leader Draža Mihajlović on collectively juxtaposition to the occupant. At the end of the January, 1942 Tito got the second great military battle – that was a storied 'Igmanski marš' (Igman's March), which concurrently brought a huge human victims.


In the fifth episode witnesses of the Testament talk about the time of a big human agony and dramatic war fate in concentration camps of death, in Ustasha prisons, on the battlefield. It's talked about tremendous suffering of young women in prisons, about dying of dear friends, about implementing death penalty in Partizan's forces with the goal of developing and preserving the reputation of partizan's movement. The suffering of children is terrible, from a rough childhood of Tito's second son, a boy who's left alone, without parents; to the stories of mothers that saved, but also buried their own dead children; to the fate of Kozara's children. I'ts also talked about the organization of Partizan's movement in Slovenia, the famous battle at Kozara, the Republic of Bihać, AVNOJ's II. assembly. On his war path, Tito is followed by an attractive assistant Davorijanka, who left her boyfriend (Jovo Kapičić) for Tito. Kapičić was Tito's companion and a friend. Partizan's drama section was also formed, more details about the war path of a famous actor Bobi Marotti are revieled, and there are also details on the politician Hebrang, writer Vladimir Nazor, Goran Kovačić and many other people.

Episode 6 BATTLE

In the sixth episode it's talked about a dramatic war year – 1943, through personal dramas and suffering of the whitnesses of Tito's testament; about facing death and the attempt of suicide of Tito's wife Herta Hass in a women's prison, about her exchange with high rated officer that was lead by Tito's companion Vlado Velebit, according to Tito's order. Tito did everything to save his wife from the prison. It's talked about arresting the Novosel brother and sister, a communists from a rich family from Zagreb and their dramatic fate and death of Ozren Novosel in the most notorious Jasenovac prison; about the horrors of Jasenovac camp, Neretva battle, Sutjesca battle, about a great writer Vladimir Nazor and affectionate care of a great artist, musician Oskar Danone for Vladimir Nazor, about a magnificient concert of a Military orchestra in Otočac.

Episode 7 CREATION

In the seventh episode in their intimate stories the witnesses of Tito's testament talk about AVNOJ's II. Assembly in Jajce, as of the beginning of creation of the new State Yugoslavia. During the AVNOJ's II. Assembly and parallel bombing a great revolutionary Ivo Lola Ribar dies, Tito and Herta Hass are getting divorced , on the partizan's cultural scene a famous acting with ballerina Mira Sanjina takes place. We find out about passionate 'Shakespeare's' kind of love between Tito and Davorijanka Zdenka Paunović, about storied Drop over Drvar 1944 on Tito's birthday; about dramatic salvation of Tito and Headquarters from Drvar across Italy (Bari) to the island Vis. In August 1944, Tito meets for the first time Churchill in Napoli (Italy), when Tito and his delegation visits Vatican.


In the eighth episode the witnesses talk about activities of 1944 to 1945. Tito stealthily travels to Moscow, where he and Stallin negotiate terminal war operations. The musician and contestant Oskar Danon compose a hymn ''Hej Slaveni'' for the competition auxiliary in water-polo and swimming, where also acts Tito's partizans. The battles for libaration of Belgrade, Trieste, Sarajevo, Ljubljana, Zagreb and whole Yugoslavia are following. After the capitulation of Germany, in whole Europe comes the time of revenge and liquidation of defeated, often without a court. Defeated German's, Ustasha's, Domobran's, Chetnic's forces and many civilian retrocedes because of the delivery to Britons, but they bring them back to partizans. Anarchic, dramatic situation on the way from Bleiburg to Vojvodina is following, when many of soldiers of defeated armies, war losers and many innocent civilians perish. Mišo Broz finally meets his parents, the mother Herta Hass and the father Tito.

Episode 9 CONQUEST

In the ninth episode the witnesses of Tito's testament talk about very difficult years after the war, about complicated political and economic situation, During the liberation of the country there are also political liliquidations and revenges. Because of the enormous drought and negative consequences of compulsory redemption agricultural products to inhabitants, the famine threatens. New State faces defeat of project countrified active cooperatives. From Istria Italians emigrate; over the mountains there are actions of catching bands defeated armies; proceeding of Chetnic leader Draža Mihajlović takes place as also other war criminals; catholic cardinal Stepinac; diplomatic relations with Vatican are suspended. The witnesses of the testament talk about the relation between Tito and Dimitrov and about Federation of Balkans; about relation between Tito and Hebrang, Hebrang's liquidation; about the Resolution of Informbiro; about Tito's NO to Stallin; about the new horrors and human sufferings on the island 'Goli otok', where members of Informbiro as innocent victims are suffered.

Episode 10 BLOOMING

In the tenth episode the witnesses of Tito's testament talk about the beginnings of strong and comprehensive development of Yugoslavia, that is obviously a distance from the soviet model of political, social and economic development. It's talked about implementation of self-management, dissolution of countrified active cooperatives, enforcement of agrarian reform, the beginning of the development of atomic programme, establishing Zagreb's Trade Fair, Lexicographic Institute; art gets bigger place in society. Tito carefully cares of his family, in 1952 he's getting married with Jovanka. In 1954 Milovan Đilas – Tito's closest associate and companion resigns from the political scene because his articles about necessarity of democratisation of the society. In 1955 Hruščov apologizes because of the Informbiro. Tito starts to travel all over the world, he meets Queen Elisabeth, Churchill; Non-Aligned Movement is constituted. In 1960 Tito visits USA – Kennedy. From that time economic and social liberalisation is getting stronger. In 1964 yugoslav borders are opening to the west.

Episode 11 777 SEVEN

In the eleventh episode the witnesses of the testament talk about particular events, that evidence the most successful period of yugoslav social and economic development; about the year 1965 when ex partisan communist writer and seafarer Joža Horvat visits Tito before his journey in sailing ship around the world; about the year 1966 and Brioni's plenum, where it comes to the dismiss between Tito and Ranković, who was also Tito's closest associate and companion; about the year 1967 and the Declaration of Croatian language. It's talked about the role of great croatian writer Miroslav Krleža in creating movement 'Croatian spring'; about the time of attempts political alternation of generations. In 1968 'Prague Spring' happens. Tito bespeaks to De Gaule his intention of opposition to the Russians. We find out about Tito's role in creating yugoslav cinematography. In 1970 Nixon visits Zagreb. Relations with Chatolic church are established; admission of Kaptol in Banski dvori and admission of Tito in Vatican by Pope. There are stronger and stronger demands for the reform of federation.


In the twelfth episode the witnesses of the testament talk about the beginning of the seventies, when there is a shift of liberall and national oriented cadres in Yugoslav Republics, in Croatia – Savka Dabčević, Mika Tripalo and other staff of 'Croatian Spring' movement; in Slovenia Kavčić, in Serbia Latinka Perović, Marko Nikezić and Mirko Tepavac, in Macedonia Krsto Crvenkovski and many others. At the same time the witnesses point to Tito's reputation at the world political scene. Plenty of very important state's visits become reality. In 1974 Germany organizes magnificient welcome to Tito. The witnesses, who are talking are dissidents, political prisoners, convicts. It's talked about art, self-management, weakening Party's authority, critic of one-party system, Confederal Constitution from 1974 that affirms sovereignty of the republics; about promulgation of Tito as perpetual president, as also about the details from Tito's personal and family life.

Episode 13 DEATH

In the twelfth episode the witnesses of the testament talk about the end of the seventies, when Tito has the role of establisher on international stage and the greatest authority of the 'Third World', these enjoys incontestable committes and honour. At the same time he looses the governance in the country, with the goal of army-police establishment, that easily insulates Tito from the real impact on political development in the country as also from the members of his family and his wife Jovanka, from whom he was separated. Old, powerless and ill Tito passed that very badly. The witnesses talk about the death of his associate and friend Edvard Kardelj, that reminded Tito on many associates and friends, who Tito himself during his longterm political and state activity in different ways moved away from his life and presence. The last Tito's contribution to the Non-Aligned Movement is the conference on Kuba. At the end of Tito's life, he was sad and insulated, he died isolated and alone . At the end of this series the most important witnesses of the testament take out their inclusive vision and experience of Tito, whose funeral was the most magnificent funeral of one of the statesman in the 20th century that history ever recorded.

Written by:
Olujka Jasprica, Producer