Famous German Directors

Find out more about the greatest German Film Directors, including Christoph Waltz, Werner Herzog, Roland Emmerich, Leni Riefenstahl and Wim Wenders

This ranking is based on an algorithm that combines various factors, including the votes of our users and search trends on the internet.

Vote for Your Favourite German Directors

 1 Werner Herzog

Werner Herzog
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Famous As: Actor, Director
Birthdate: September 5, 1942
Sun Sign: Virgo
Nationality: German
Werner Herzog, one of the prominent figures of the New German Cinema era, has directed films such as Fitzcarraldo and Aguirre, and documentaries such as Grizzly Man. Named to TIME 100, he has written countless books and directed many operas. He was also seen playing The Client in The Mandalorian.

 2 Leni Riefenstahl

Leni Riefenstahl
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Famous As: Film Director
Birthdate: August 22, 1902
Sun Sign: Leo
Nationality: German
Died: September 8, 2003
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 3 Roland Emmerich

Roland Emmerich
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Famous As: Film Director, Screenwriter
Birthdate: November 10, 1955
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Nationality: German
German director/producer Roland Emmerich is best known for his blockbuster disaster/war films such as The Day After Tomorrow, Independence Day, Godzilla, and The Patriot. The LGBT activist is also openly gay. He is also an avid art collector. He has also worked for women’s rights and environmental causes.

 4 Wim Wenders

Wim Wenders
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Famous As: Film director, Actor, Photographer, Screenwriter, University teacher
Birthdate: August 14, 1945
Sun Sign: Leo
Nationality: German

 5 Rainer Werner Fassbinder

Rainer Werner Fassbinder
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Famous As: Film maker
Birthdate: May 31, 1945
Sun Sign: Gemini
Nationality: German
Died: June 10, 1982

 6 Wolfgang Petersen

Wolfgang Petersen
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Famous As: Film director, Film producer, Screenwriter
Birthdate: March 14, 1941
Sun Sign: Pisces
Nationality: German

 7 Armin Mueller-Stahl

Armin Mueller-Stahl
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Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: December 17, 1930
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Nationality: German
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 8 F. W. Murnau

F. W. Murnau
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Famous As: Film director
Birthdate: December 28, 1888
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Nationality: German
Died: March 11, 1931

 9 Tom Tykwer

Tom Tykwer
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Famous As: Film director, Film producer, Screenwriter, Composer, Cinematographer, Film score composer
Birthdate: May 23, 1965
Sun Sign: Gemini
Nationality: German

 10 Ernst Lubitsch

Ernst Lubitsch
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Famous As: Film director, Actor, Screenwriter, Film producer, Writer, Film editor
Birthdate: January 29, 1892
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Nationality: German, American
Died: November 30, 1947

 11 I. Marlene King

I. Marlene King
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Famous As: Screenwriter
Birthdate: May 22, 1962
Sun Sign: Gemini
Nationality: German

 12 Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck

Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck
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Famous As: Film director, Screenwriter
Birthdate: May 2, 1973
Sun Sign: Taurus
Nationality: German

 13 Cosima Wagner

Cosima Wagner
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Famous As: Composer, Writer, Director
Birthdate: December 24, 1837
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Nationality: German
Died: April 1, 1930

 14 Lexi Alexander

Lexi Alexander
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Famous As: Film producer, Film director, Screenwriter, Karateka, Kickboxer
Birthdate: August 23, 1974
Sun Sign: Leo
Nationality: German

 15 Ulrich Mühe

Ulrich Mühe
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Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: June 20, 1953
Sun Sign: Gemini
Nationality: German
Died: July 22, 2007

 16 Fatih Akın

Fatih Akın
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Famous As: Director
Birthdate: August 25, 1973
Sun Sign: Virgo
Nationality: German

 17 Maria Schrader

Maria Schrader
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Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: September 27, 1965
Sun Sign: Libra
Nationality: German

 18 Hito Steyerl

Hito Steyerl
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Famous As: film director
Birthdate: 1966 AD
Nationality: German

 19 Robert Schwentke

Robert Schwentke
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Famous As: screenwriter, film director
Birthdate: 1968 AD
Nationality: German

 20 Volker Schlöndorff

Volker Schlöndorff
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Famous As: Filmmaker
Birthdate: March 31, 1939
Sun Sign: Aries
Nationality: German

 21 Gustav Frohlich

Gustav Frohlich
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Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: March 21, 1902
Sun Sign: Aries
Nationality: German
Died: December 22, 1987

 22 Marcus Nispel

Marcus Nispel
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Famous As: film director
Birthdate: April 15, 1963
Sun Sign: Aries
Nationality: German

 23 Dean Reed

Dean Reed
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Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: September 22, 1938
Sun Sign: Virgo
Nationality: German, American
Died: June 13, 1986

 24 Oliver Hirschbiegel

Oliver Hirschbiegel
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Famous As: Film director
Birthdate: December 29, 1957
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Nationality: German

 25 Christian Petzold

Christian Petzold
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Famous As: film director, screenwriter
Birthdate: September 14, 1960
Sun Sign: Virgo
Nationality: German

 26 Margarethe von Trotta

Margarethe von Trotta
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Famous As: Film director
Birthdate: February 21, 1942
Sun Sign: Pisces
Nationality: German

 27 Helmut Griem

Helmut Griem
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Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: April 6, 1932
Sun Sign: Aries
Nationality: German
Died: November 19, 2004

 28 Robert Siodmak

Robert Siodmak
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Famous As: Film Director
Birthdate: August 8, 1900
Sun Sign: Leo
Nationality: German
Died: March 10, 1973

 29 Uli Edel

Uli Edel
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Famous As: Film director
Birthdate: April 11, 1947
Sun Sign: Aries
Nationality: German

 30 Veit Harlan

Veit Harlan
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Famous As: Director
Birthdate: September 22, 1899
Sun Sign: Virgo
Nationality: German
Died: April 13, 1964

 31 Heinz Rühmann

Heinz Rühmann
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Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: March 7, 1902
Sun Sign: Pisces
Nationality: German
Died: October 3, 1994

 32 Otto Waalkes

Otto Waalkes
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Famous As: Comedian
Birthdate: July 22, 1948
Sun Sign: Cancer
Nationality: German

 33 Erwin Piscator

Erwin Piscator
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Famous As: Theatre director
Birthdate: December 17, 1893
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Nationality: German
Died: March 30, 1966

 34 Jiri Menzel

Jiri Menzel
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Famous As: Director
Birthdate: February 23, 1938
Sun Sign: Pisces
Nationality: German
Died: September 5, 2020

 35 Ulli Lommel

Ulli Lommel
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Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: December 21, 1944
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Nationality: German, Polish
Died: December 2, 2017

 36 Gustav von Wangenheim

Gustav von Wangenheim
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Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: February 18, 1895
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Nationality: German
Died: August 5, 1975

 37 Heiner Müller

Heiner Müller
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Famous As: Dramatist
Birthdate: January 9, 1929
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Nationality: German
Died: December 30, 1995

 38 Harun Farocki

Harun Farocki
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Famous As: Screenwriter, Photographer, Film director, University teacher
Birthdate: January 9, 1944
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Nationality: German
Died: July 30, 2014

 39 Peter Weiss

Peter Weiss
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Famous As: Playwright, Writer, Painter, Director, Film director
Birthdate: November 8, 1916
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Nationality: German, Swedish
Died: May 10, 1982

 40 Hans Richter

Hans Richter
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Famous As: painter, art historian, artist
Birthdate: April 6, 1888
Sun Sign: Aries
Nationality: German
Died: February 1, 1976

 41 Kurt Gerron

Kurt Gerron
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Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: May 11, 1897
Sun Sign: Taurus
Nationality: German
Died: October 28, 1944

 42 Florian David Fitz

Florian David Fitz
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Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: November 20, 1974
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Nationality: German

 43 Gojko Mitić

Gojko Mitić
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Famous As: Director
Birthdate: June 13, 1940
Sun Sign: Gemini
Nationality: German

 44 Hanns Zischler

Hanns Zischler
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Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: June 18, 1947
Sun Sign: Gemini
Nationality: German

 45 Rebecca Horn

Rebecca Horn
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Famous As: Sculptor, Choreographer, Film director
Birthdate: March 24, 1944
Sun Sign: Aries
Nationality: German

 46 Paul Wegener

Paul Wegener
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Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: December 11, 1874
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Nationality: German, Polish
Died: September 13, 1948

 47 William Dieterle

William Dieterle
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Famous As: Actor, Director
Birthdate: July 15, 1893
Sun Sign: Cancer
Nationality: German
Died: December 9, 1972

 48 Jurgen Vogel

Jurgen Vogel
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Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: April 29, 1968
Sun Sign: Taurus
Nationality: German

 49 Katharina Thalbach

Katharina Thalbach
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Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: January 19, 1954
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Nationality: German

 50 Henry Koster

Henry Koster
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Famous As: Director, Producer
Birthdate: May 1, 1905
Sun Sign: Taurus
Nationality: German, American
Died: September 21, 1988