IMDb > The Lives of Others (2006)
Das Leben der Anderen
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The Lives of Others (2006) More at IMDbPro »Das Leben der Anderen (original title)

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Release Date:
23 March 2006 (Germany) See more »
Before the Fall of the Berlin Wall, East Germany's Secret Police Listened to Your Secrets See more »
In 1984 East Berlin, an agent of the secret police, conducting surveillance on a writer and his lover, finds himself becoming increasingly absorbed by their lives. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
Won Oscar. Another 78 wins & 27 nominations See more »
User Reviews:
Intelligent and moving dealing with GDR history See more (388 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Martina Gedeck ... Christa-Maria Sieland

Ulrich Mühe ... Hauptmann Gerd Wiesler

Sebastian Koch ... Georg Dreyman

Ulrich Tukur ... Oberstleutnant Anton Grubitz
Thomas Thieme ... Minister Bruno Hempf
Hans-Uwe Bauer ... Paul Hauser
Volkmar Kleinert ... Albert Jerska
Matthias Brenner ... Karl Wallner
Charly Hübner ... Udo
Herbert Knaup ... Gregor Hessenstein
Bastian Trost ... Häftling 227
Marie Gruber ... Frau Meineke

Volker Michalowski ... Schriftexperte (as Zack Volker Michalowski)

Werner Daehn ... Einsatzleiter in Uniform
Martin Brambach ... Einsatzleiter Meyer
Hubertus Hartmann ... Egon Schwalber
Thomas Arnold ... Nowack
Hinnerk Schönemann ... Unterleutnant Axel Stigler
Paul Faßnacht ... Onkel Frank Hauser

Ludwig Blochberger ... Benedikt Lehmann
Paul Maximilian Schüller ... Junge mit Ball
Susanna Kraus ... Andrea
Gabi Fleming ... Prostituierte 'Ute'
Michael Gerber ... Zahnarzt Dr. Czimmy
Fabian von Klitzing ... Tagesschausprecher
Harald Polzin ... Wächter
Sheri Hagen ... 'Martha' 1991
Gitta Schweighöfer ... 'Anja' 1984
Elja-Dusa Kedves ... 'Anja' 1991
Hildegard Schroedter ... 'Elena' 1984
Inga Birkenfeld ... 'Elena' 1991 / BStU-Mitarbeiterin
Philipp Kewenig ... Christas Verhafter
Jens Wassermann ... 'Rolf' Andi Wenzke-Falkenau
Ernst-Ludwig Petrowsky ... Bandleader
Manfred Ludwig Sextett ... Band
Kai Ivo Baulitz ... Buchverkäufer
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Ralf Ehrlich ... Kollege in der Stasi-Kantine (uncredited)

Anabelle Munro ... Theatre Actress (uncredited)

Klaus Münster ... Erich Mielke (voice) (uncredited)

Directed by
Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck 
Writing credits
Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck (written by)

Produced by
Quirin Berg .... producer
Claudia Gladziejewski .... co-producer: BR
Dirk Hamm .... co-producer
Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck .... co-producer
Monika Lobkowicz .... co-producer: BR - Arte
Andreas Schreitmüller .... co-producer: Arte
Max Wiedemann .... producer
Original Music by
Stéphane Moucha 
Gabriel Yared 
Cinematography by
Hagen Bogdanski 
Film Editing by
Patricia Rommel 
Casting by
Simone Bär 
Production Design by
Silke Buhr 
Art Direction by
Christiane Rothe 
Set Decoration by
Frank Noack 
Costume Design by
Gabriele Binder 
Makeup Department
Tamar Aviv .... assistant makeup artist: extras
Annett Schulze .... makeup artist
Sabine Schumann .... makeup artist
Production Management
Oliver Berger .... assistant set manager
Lisa Kolodzik .... unit production manager
Tom Sternitzke .... production manager
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Claudia Beewen .... assistant director
Katharina Hofmann .... second assistant director
Art Department
Olaf Kronenthal .... standby props
Michael Roggemann .... draughtsman
Christian Sitta .... assistant production designer
Klaus Spielhagen .... film architect
Gonda Hinrichs .... construction coordinator (uncredited)
Sound Department
Eva Claudius .... adr editor
João Da Costa Pinto .... foley editor
Detlef Halaski .... adr mixer
Larry Hopkins .... layback sound mixer
Andrea Koschmieder .... dialogue editor
Jörn Poetzl .... foley artist
Hubertus Rath .... sound re-recording mixer
Oliver Schnug .... boom operator
Philipp Sellier .... foley recordist
Christoph von Schönburg .... sound designer
Christoph von Schönburg .... supervising sound editor
Arno Wilms .... production sound mixer
Special Effects by
Adrian Lorbert .... special effects
Hans Seck .... special effects
Visual Effects by
Maik Strauch .... color timer
Alister Mazzotti .... stunts
Camera and Electrical Department
Stefan Eckert .... lighting technician
Nicolay Gutscher .... assistant camera
Hagen Keller .... still photographer
Heiko Kohl .... best boy grip
Michael Koschorreck .... lighting technician
Ralph Leopold .... lighting technician
Holger Löhner .... lighting technician
Richard Nitsche .... lighting technician
Jürgen Ruge .... lighting technician
Michael Röska .... gaffer
Martin Sell .... lighting technician
Stephan Sommersberg .... key grip
Theresa von Eltz .... video operator
Florian Wentzel .... lighting technician
Casting Department
Marcel Dykiert .... extras casting assistant
Iris Müller .... extras casting
Kirstin Plotz .... casting assistant
Editorial Department
Julie Bargeton .... assistant editor
Sylvain Coutandin .... post-production assistant
Ute Lingner .... film lab manager
Stefan Müller .... managing director film lab
Gabriela Schultze .... sales manager film lab
Olivia Retzer .... assistant editor (uncredited)
Music Department
Jean-Pierre Arquié .... music consultant (as Jean-Pierre Arquie)
The City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra .... orchestra
Jan Holzner .... music recording/mixing engineer
Adam Klemens .... conductor
Philipp F. Kölmel .... music recordist: pre-production
Other crew
Oliver Berger .... assistant set manager
Jan Bludau .... set runner
Thomas Duchnicki .... location scout
Erika Falk .... location scout
Kamil Friebel .... set runner
Christine Haupt .... production coordinator
Matthias Junge .... continuity
Matthias Junge .... script supervisor
Holger Köhler-Kaeß .... set runner
Peter Maasz .... location manager
Ana-Mona Müller-Schwerin .... location scout
Martin Pust .... set runner
Wolfgang Rhaden .... production accountant
Paul Rohlfs .... set runner
Eva Simonet .... press attaché: France
Sally Steele .... publicist
Nicole Wolfarth .... researcher
Martin Zillger .... location scout
Anabelle Munro .... double: Monica Gedeck (uncredited)
Erna Baumbauer .... special thanks
Sebastian Henckel-Donnersmarck .... special thanks
Jörg Stempel .... special thanks
Mahée Thorak .... grateful thanks

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Das Leben der Anderen" - Germany (original title)
See more »
Rated R for some sexuality/nudity
137 min
Aspect Ratio:
2.35 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:

Did You Know?

The entire budget of the film, about 2 million dollars (1.6 million Euro), was possible only because the actors were willing to work for 20% of their customary salary.See more »
Continuity: When Grubitz talks to Wiesler in the cafeteria, the amount of liquid in their glasses falls and rises over the course of the scene.See more »
[first lines]
Guard:[subtitled version] Stand still. Eyes to the floor.
Guard:Walk on.
See more »
Movie Connections:
Referenced in Cleanflix (2009)See more »
GralSee more »


I do not understand the "telephone joke" that Grubitz tells in the MfS cafeteria
How much sex, violence, and profanity are in this movie?
This film won an Oscar and a BAFTA for foreign language film; which others have done this?
See more »
357 out of 396 people found the following review useful.
Intelligent and moving dealing with GDR history, 24 March 2006
Author: anastasia_smile from Germany

East Berlin, November 1984. Five years before its downfall the GDR seeks to maintain its power with the help of a merciless system of control and observation. When Oberstleutnant Anton Grubitz puts loyal Stasi-Hauptmann Gerd Wiesler on to the famous writer Georg Dreymann and his girlfriend Christa Maria Sieland who is a famous actress herself, he expects career advancement for himself. For most important politicians are responsible for this "operative act".

What Wiesler did not expect: the intimate view on the world of the ones he's observing changes the snitch as well. Looking at "the life of the others" makes him aware of the beggarliness in his own life and enables access to a so far unknown world of love, free thinking and speaking he is hardly able to elude. But the system can't be stopped anymore and a dangerous game, which destroys the love of Christa Maria Sieland and Georg Dreymann and Wieslers present existence begins.

Until the fall of the wall each of them has paid a big price. After that a whole new world begins.

My personal opinion - though it doesn't count that much - is that this one a an absolute Must See. I can hardly remember such an intelligent and moving German movie especially not including the whole topic of GDR history and the dealing with it. I think this is the first German movie which shows this system as it used to be (which has been confirmed by several contemporary witnesses) and not turns it and its people into comedy though there have been several good ones, of course.

Was the above review useful to you?
See more (388 total) »

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