On the death of Bruno Ganz - Too serious for the glamor culture

Bruno Ganz had a tremendous presence, in front of the camera as well as on stage. The sinking in and deepening made his way to work. Above all, however, a role was attached to him.

Many years after Bruno Ganz made his name as a theatrical actor, he became famous all over the world. He played Damiel in Wim Wenders' "The Sky over Berlin" (1987), an angel who watches over people and yet envies them for their sensual experiences. Ganz had also previously shot with Wenders, "The American Friend" (1977), but this film met the yearnings of his time, and he made Bruno Ganz so famous that he later told people that when they recognized him, they completely did calmed down. "People on the plane said to me, 'We do not have to be afraid when you're there, nothing can happen.' When Ganz played, he played with body and soul; with so much energy that people even began to believe in his supernatural powers.

Ganz was born on March 22, 1941 in Zurich, in small proportions; When he wanted to become an actor, he strove out of little Switzerland, into gloomy Germany, as he himself felt then. He was fearless, almost he had landed in the GDR: In veneration for Bertolt Brecht, he had applied to the Berlin Ensemble. He first went to Bremen, then back to Zurich and then to Berlin, to the West, to the Schaubühne, 1970.

To the death of Bruno Ganz

In the sky over Berlin – A career in pictures

Maybe he has already brought the way to dive into his work; she was trained there anyway, it was read and discussed beyond the rehearsals. When French director Eric Rohmer called him Count for "The Marquess of O." (1976), Ganz has certainly impressed the Nouvelle Vague veterans. Rohmer liked to use paintings as references for his work, and Bruno Ganz immersed himself in the images Rohmer showed him. Ganz continued to work at the theater, but nevertheless became one of the favorite actors of the New German Cinema. He shot with Werner Herzog "Nosferatu" (1979) and played the war reporter Georg Loschen in Volker Schlöndorff's "The Falsification" (1981).

He pursued his career at the theater and is one of the best in his profession. In 1996, Josef Meinrad bequeathed him the Iffland-Ring, an award for the "most important and most worthy stage artist in German-speaking theater". Ringbearer remains for life. Botho Strauss gave the eulogy and praised the eloquence: Never had Ganz "over a sentence" away.

Ganz was too serious to surrender to glamor

But that was all still capable of improvement, at least as far as world fame is concerned. He plays the angel Damiel for Wenders a second time in "Afar, so close" (1993), and then an Icelandic waiter in Silvio Soldini's "Bread and Tulips" (2000), in which an Italian housewife falls in love. A little romantic comedy, for Ganz a completely atypical film – which then turned out to be a surprise hit.

Ganz has usually opted for films with larger themes, with more weight – as the role he has assumed four years later and which then actually stuck to him for many years: the einunkerte Hitler in Oliver Hirschbiegel's "The Downfall" (2004), who tucks through the underground passages with his arms folded behind his back. Maybe every precise account of Hitler is somehow ridiculous. In any case, from then on Ganz got an international offer after the other, he did "The Counselor" (2013) with Sir Ridley Scott, with Lars von Trier "The House that Jack built" (2018), with Bille August "night train to Lisbon "(2013).

The glamor of acting has never interested Bruno Ganz, he was too serious for that. But he had a tremendous presence, even if he did not play at all, but just sat opposite one another and talked about his life, or told a very specific place on Lake Zurich where the view was most beautiful. He loved Zurich, in the end certainly more than he knew in the beginning; He always returned. And there, in his hometown, he died this Saturday.

Interview with Bruno Ganz 2017

"I do not belong there"

The actor Bruno Ganz explains why he was not happy in Hollywood, what inspired him earlier in socialism and why he is becoming increasingly skeptical.By Susan Vahabzadeh