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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Marc Forster is a Swiss filmmaker best known for directing popular and critically acclaimed films like Monster's Ball, Stranger than Fiction, Quantum of Solace, and The Kite Runner. Over the course of his career, Marc Forster has received nominations for prestigious awards like the BAFTA Award for Best Direction and Golden Globe Award for Best 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.
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.
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.
Dolly Buster is a Czech-German author, filmmaker, and retired pornographic actress. She appeared in more than 100 X-rated European movies and was named the hottest porn star in Germany in 2009. Dolly Buster also has a Lifetime Achievement Award, presented at the Venus Awards, and a Special Jury Award under her belt. Buster has also written a series of crime-novels.
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.
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.
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.
German artist and filmmaker Hans Richter was initially associated with the Blaue Reiter and later inspired by Cubism. He made a significant impact on Dadaism. A Jew, he fled the Nazi regime by escaping first to the Soviet Union, then to Switzerland, and then finally to the US.