Michael Haneke Poster


Jump to: Overview (3) | Mini Bio (1) | Spouse (1) | Trade Mark (10) | Trivia (17) | Personal Quotes (19)

Overview (3)

Date of Birth 23 March 1942Munich, Bavaria, Germany
Nickname Slappy
Height 6' 3" (1.91 m)

Mini Bio (1)

Michael Haneke was born on March 23, 1942 in Munich, Bavaria, Germany. He is a writer and director, known for The White Ribbon (2009), Amour (2012) and Caché (Hidden) (2005). He is married to Susanne. They have four children.

Spouse (1)

Susanne (? - present) (4 children)

Trade Mark (10)

Short outbursts of violence, often occurring off-screen.
Use of extremely long static takes
Uses no film score
Shots of televisions, usually showing news
Cuts to black between scenes
Male character named Georg, George, or Georges Laurent
Female character named Anna, Ann, or Anne Laurent
Frequently centers film around psychotic, violent youths or socially detached characters.
Silent credits

Trivia (17)

Besides working on his various movie projects, he also works as a professor for directing at the Vienna Film Academy.
He started his career as a playwright for the Südwestfunk (ARD) in 1967 and started working as a freelance director for TV and theater in 1970.
He was raised in the city of Wiener Neustadt, Austria and later studied psychology, philosophy and theatrical sciences at the University of Vienna, Austria.
Son of director and actor Fritz Haneke and actress Beatrix Degenschild. Father of David Haneke.
Directed his first opera, "Don Giovanni" by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, in Paris. His unconventional interpretation caused mixed reactions among critics and the audience (27 January 2006).
Named his ten favorite films in the 2002 Sight & Sound Greatest Films Poll: Au Hasard Balthazar (1966), Lancelot of the Lake (1974), The Mirror (1975), Salò, or the 120 Days of Sodom (1975), The Exterminating Angel (1962), The Gold Rush (1925), Psycho (1960), A Woman Under the Influence (1974), Germany Year Zero (1948) and L'Eclisse (1962).
His statement that "A feature film is twenty-four lies per second" is a reversal of and most likely a reference to Jean-Luc Godard's famous quote, "The cinema is truth, twenty-four frames per second.".
One of 105 people invited to join AMPAS in 2008.
He has made films in French, German and English.
He is fluent in French.
As a playwright he directed a number of stage productions in German, which included works by August Strindberg, Johann Wolfgang Goethe and Heinrich von Kleist in Berlin, Munich and Vienna.
Started making feature films after 21 years of working in Television. He was 46.
As of 2013, has directed one actress to an Academy Award-nominated performance: Emmanuelle Riva (Best Actress, Amour (2012)).
Twice winner of the Palme d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival for The White Ribbon (2009) and Amour (2012). The other directors to have won the Palme twice are Bille August, Jean-Pierre Dardenne & Luc Dardenne, Alf Sjöberg, Shôhei Imamura, Emir Kusturica and Francis Ford Coppola.
After the death of Michael's mother, his stepfather Alexander Steinbrecher married the set designer Elisabeth Urbancic, who happens to be the mother of actor Christoph Waltz.
Enjoys watching Italian westerns (aka spaghetti westerns).
Directed his first feature film when he was 46 years old.

Personal Quotes (19)

Films that are entertainments give simple answers but I think that's ultimately more cynical, as it denies the viewer room to think. If there are more answers at the end, then surely it is a richer experience.
I like the multiplicity of books, because each book is different in the mind of each reader. It's the same with this film - if 300 people are in a cinema watching it, they will all see a different film, so in a way there are thousands of different versions of Caché (Hidden) (2005). The point being that, despite what TV shows us, and what the news stories tell us, there is never just one truth, there is only personal truth.
A feature film is twenty-four lies per second.
It's the duty of art to ask questions, not to provide answers. And if you want a clearer answer, I'll have to pass.
Pornography, it seems to me, is no different from war films or propaganda films in that it tries to make the visceral, horrific, or transgressive elements of life consumable.
My favourite film-maker of the decade is Abbas Kiarostami. He achieves a simplicity that's so difficult to attain.
[When asked why he's making movies] Never ask the centipede why it walks, or it will stumble.
I'm lucky enough to be able to make films and so I don't need a psychiatrist. I can sort out my fears and all those things with my work. That's an enormous privilege. That's the privilege of all artists, to be able to sort out their unhappiness and their neuroses in order to create something.
I try to get closer to reality, to get close to the contradictions. The cinema world can be a real world rather than a dream world.
[on his satisfaction as an artist] In terms of cinema and filmmaking, there are certainly the unexpected gifts that the actors bestow on you. Film is always a question of compromises with respect to what you originally intended.
[on what interests him as a moviegoer] I'm interested in seeing films that confront me with new things, with films that make me question myself, with films that help me to reflect on subjects that I hadn't thought about before, films that help me progress and advance. Those are the kinds of films that interest me. For me, personally, I think watching a movie that simply confirms my feelings is a waste of time. That applies not only to movies, but also to books and every form of art.
I don't really ask myself too much where the ideas come from. When things touch you or anger you, you are moved to want to examine them, to reflect on them. But yes, I guess you could say [Amour (2012)] is a memento mori, though it would never occur to me to use that term, since it might sound a little bit sentimental.
[on why he considers Marlon Brando and Jean-Louis Trintignant to be his favorite actors] They don't externalize or project everything. They keep a mystery within themselves, and that I think is the sign of a truly great actor, to be able to maintain that.
[on Amour (2012)] As I watched [Trintignant] and Emmanuelle Riva, I was thinking of medieval palimpsets, those documents in which you see remnants of older writing under the top layer. In this case it was mental images of these two great iconic figures of the French nouvelle vague as the younger, more vigorous and physically beautiful figures they once were.
There are those who see film and take it seriously as an artistic medium, and others who go to have a good time, to simply be entertained. I have to be careful , because it sounds like I am condemning, or criticizing what people are doing. I have nothing against that, in the same way that some people like rock music or to go dancing, and other people like to go to a Beethoven concert. It's just that I'm more interested in the one than the other.
Faith per se is something positive; it generates meaning. I for one have no religious faith anymore. Tough luck!
[on teaching film] I guess I'm a relatively demanding teacher because I think it's no use treating students with kid gloves. At the Academy, they are working with a net anyway, so I try to quickly raise the requirements to prepare them for the professional life. I also try and give them internships on my shoots, but it can't be more than two per film. And usually I don't mix with the students on a personal level. I mean, I give advice whenever they call me, but I don't go out for a beer with them. I don't believe the role of "best buddy" is something that a teacher or parent should aspire to. I think kids hate that, they find their buddies at school, but in a father or teacher they look for a role model.
I wait for each new film by Luc and Jean-Pierre Dardenne, Abbas Kiarostami, Claire Denis and Bruno Dumont. I enjoy all sorts of films, but those are the people that really interest me. I admire the Dardenne brothers tremendously, but I feel closest, in my work, to Dumont. Dumont's films are basically existential works, philosophical films, not political ones. I think of my own films that way.[Sept. 23, 2007]
I remember when Quentin Tarantino's Pulp Fiction (1994) came out, and I was sitting in a matinee filled with young people. The famous scene of a boy's head being blown off caused a huge commotion in the theater. They thought it was great and they almost died laughing. I was upset because I think it's irresponsible.

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