2 Christoph Waltz(Actor)
3 LeVar Burton(Actor known for his Roles in "Star Trek: The Next Generation" and "Reading Rainbow")
Best known for his performances as Kunta Kinte in Roots and Geordi La Forge in Star Trek: The Next Generation, LeVar Burton is also known for his 23-year stint as the award-winning host of Reading Rainbow. Though he initially aspired to be a Catholic priest, he doesn’t believe in any religion anymore.
4 Leni Riefenstahl(Film Director)
Leni Riefenstahl was a German film director and actress best remembered for her role in producing Nazi propaganda. She made her directorial debut in 1932, becoming one of the few women to direct a movie during the Weimar Period. Riefenstahl is credited with directing two of the most technically innovative propaganda films of all time, Olympia and Triumph des Willens.
5 Roland Emmerich(Director Best Known as 'Master of Disaster' for His Science Fiction and Disaster Films)
6 William Wyler(Film director)
7 Til Schweiger(German Actor and the Country’s Most Successful Director)
Til Schweiger is a German actor, filmmaker, and voice actor. Apart from playing important roles in German films, Schweiger has also appeared in several American films, such as Investigating Sex, King Arthur, and Already Dead. Til Schweiger is credited with establishing a production company named Barefoot Films.
8 F. W. Murnau(Film director)
F. W. Murnau was a German film director best remembered for directing the 1922 silent horror film Nosferatu: A Symphony of Horror, which is widely regarded as a masterpiece of German Expressionist cinema. He also made Hollywood films like Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans, which is often counted among the best movies ever made by critics and film directors.
9 Ernst Lubitsch(Film director)
10 Michael Haneke(Film director, Screenwriter, Writer, University teacher)
Award-winning Austrian film director and screenwriter Michael Haneke, who teaches film direction at the Film Academy Vienna, is best-known for films like The Piano Teacher, Caché, The White Ribbon and Amour. Haneke has made films in English, French and German, and mostly deals with subjects that examine social issues and portrays feelings of individuals facing social alienation in modern society.
11 Uwe Boll(Film director)
12 Wolfgang Petersen(Film director, Film producer, Screenwriter)
Wolfgang Petersen is a German film producer, director, and screenwriter. One of the most popular and critically acclaimed German filmmakers of all time, Petersen is credited with directing successful films like In the Line of Fire, Troy, and Outbreak. His 1981 West German war film Das Boot earned him two Academy Award nominations.
13 Wim Wenders(Film director)
Wim Wenders is a German filmmaker and playwright. He is considered to be a major figure in New German Cinema. Buena Vista Social Club and Pina are among his best-known works. He has received three nominations for the Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature. Besides filmmaking, he is also active as a photographer and has published several books.
14 Rainer Werner Fassbinder(Prominent Figure and Catalyst of the New German Cinema Movement)
Rainer Werner Fassbinder was a German actor, filmmaker, and playwright. He grew up in the aftermath of World War II and had a tough childhood. He sought solace by watching films and took acting lessons. He began his career in theater and eventually entered films as well. He is considered a prominent figure of the New German Cinema movement.
15 Marc Forster(Film director, Screenwriter, Film producer)
16 Tom Tykwer(Best Known as the Director of Films: 'Run Lola Run', 'Heaven' and 'Perfume: The Story of a Murderer')
Tom Tykwer is a German film producer, director, composer, and screenwriter. Tykwer is best known for directing thriller films like Perfume: The Story of a Murderer and Run Lola Run. The recipient of three Bavarian Film Awards, Tom Tykwer is also known for co-creating the popular German TV series Babylon Berlin.
17 Oskar Fischinger(Animator)
German-American abstract animator, filmmaker, and painter Oskar Fischinger is most-noted for creating abstract musical animation decades before development of computer graphics. Among the 50 short films he made, the short animated film Motion Painting No. 1 is listed on the United States National Film Registry. He also created special effects for the German sci-fi silent film Woman in the Moon.
18 Lotte Reiniger(Director)
Lotte Reiniger was a German film director best remembered for making animated films. A pioneer of silhouette animation, Reiniger is credited with directing The Adventures of Prince Achmed, which is the oldest surviving feature-length animated film. Lotte Reiniger is also credited with devising the first form of a multiplane camera.
19 I. Marlene King(Screenwriter)
I. Marlene King is a German film director, producer, and writer. Also known for her contribution to the TV industry, King is best known for executive producing the popular American teen drama mystery thriller series Pretty Little Liars.
20 Paul Bern(Film director)
Filmmaker and producer Paul Bern was the man behind the launch of American sex symbol Jean Harlow. He, unfortunately, died of a gunshot wound only 2 months after his marriage to Bern, which gave rise to numerous theories, one of them being suicide. The handwritten suicide not found was not conclusive.
21 Cosima Wagner(Composer)
22 Lexi Alexander(Film director)
23 Maria Schrader(Actress)
24 Fatih Akın(Director)
25 Martin Wuttke(Actor)
26 Robert Schwentke(screenwriter, film director)
27 Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck(Film director, Screenwriter)
28 Hito Steyerl(Filmmaker)
29 Thea von Harbou(Screenwriter)
30 Jeremy Podeswa(screenwriter, film director, television director)
31 Ulrich Mühe(Actor)
32 Max Ophüls(Film Director)
33 Dean Reed(Actor)
34 Gustav Frohlich(Actor)
35 Marcus Nispel(film director)
36 Paul Verhoeven(Actor, Director)
37 Anna Foerster(Cinematographer)
Anna Foerster is a cinematographer and director. She began her career in the 1990s as a second unit cinematographer. She often collaborates with director Roland Emmerich and has worked with him on several films. Independence Day and Godzilla are among her best-known works as a cinematographer. She made her directorial debut with the horror film Underworld: Blood Wars.
38 Nora Fingscheidt(Film director)
39 Thor Freudenthal(Special effects artist best known for his work on Diary of a Wimpy Kid and Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters)
40 Volker Schlöndorff(Filmmaker)
German filmmaker Volker Schlöndorff, a Sorbonne alumnus, excelled in philosophy and political science in college, though he later focused on film studies. Starting his career as an assistant director, he later became a significant figure of the New German Cinema movement and also won an Academy Award for The Tin Drum.
41 Christian Petzold(film director, screenwriter)
42 Oliver Hirschbiegel(Film director)
43 Robert Siodmak(Film Director)
Robert Siodmak was a German film director best remembered for a series of stylish Hollywood films noirs he made in the mid-20th century. He began making silent films in the late 1920s. He moved to Paris following the rise of Nazism in Germany and thrived there. He later shifted to USA and found great success in Hollywood.