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Berlin '36 -- In the days leading up to the 1936 Olympics, the fate of high jumper Gretel Bergmann hangs in the balance as it is decided whether or not a Jewish athlete can be a part of the German Olympic team.


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Lothar Kurzawa (screenplay)
Eric Friedler (idea)
View company contact information for Berlin '36 on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
16 September 2011 (USA) See more »
Nazi Germany 1936. Gretel Bergman is one of Hitler's best gold medal contenders. And she's Jewish.
In the days leading up to the 1936 Olympics, the fate of high jumper Gretel Bergmann hangs in the balance as it is decided whether or not a Jewish athlete can be a part of the German Olympic team. | Add synopsis »
2 wins & 1 nomination See more »
Berlin 36 Movie Review
 (From ShockYa. 28 August 2011, 9:06 AM, PDT)

User Reviews:
"He didn't want to embarrass the Nazis" See more (6 total) »


  (in credits order)

Karoline Herfurth ... Gretel Bergmann

Sebastian Urzendowsky ... Marie Ketteler
Axel Prahl ... Hans Waldmann
Robert Gallinowski ... Sigfrid Kulmbach
Thomas Thieme ... Hans von Tschammer und Osten
Johann von Bülow ... Karl Ritter von Halt
August Zirner ... Edwin Bergmann
Maria Happel ... Paula Bergmann

Franz Dinda ... Rudolph Bergmann
Leon Seidel ... Walter Bergmann

Marita Breuer ... Eleonore Ketteler
Rosa van de Loo ... Emma Ketteler

Otto Tausig ... Leo Löwenstein
Elena Uhlig ... Frau Vogel

John Keogh ... Avery Brundage

Julie Engelbrecht ... Elisabeth 'Lilly' Vogt
Klara Manzel ... Thea Walden
Martin Wissner ... Ernst Oberberg
Matthias Redlhammer ... Stadionsprecher

Tomas Spencer ... Nigel (as Tomas Sinclair Spencer)
Adrian Zwicker ... SA-Mann
Angelika Bartsch ... Ärztin im Gesundheitsamt

Harvey Friedman ... Jackson
Katrin Hansmeier
Isabell Brenner
André Lehnert ... Zehnkämpfer
Philip Schwarz ... Zehnkämpfer
Gretel Bergmann ... Herself
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Peter Clös ... Kioskbesitzer (uncredited)

André Dietz ... (uncredited)

Adolf Hitler ... Himself (archive footage) (uncredited)
Margaret Lambert ... Herself (uncredited)
Julia Lukas ... Zuschauer im Stadion (uncredited)
Armin Schmitt ... Soldat (uncredited)
Oliver Unkel ... Wehrmachtssoldat (uncredited)

Directed by
Kaspar Heidelbach 
Writing credits
Lothar Kurzawa (screenplay)

Eric Friedler (idea)

Produced by
Doris J. Heinze .... producer
Jörn Klamroth .... producer
Klaus Rettig .... line producer
Tim Rostock .... executive producer
Gerhard Schmidt .... producer
Original Music by
Arno Steffen 
Cinematography by
Achim Poulheim 
Film Editing by
Hedy Altschiller 
Casting by
Anja Dihrberg 
Production Design by
Götz Weidner 
Costume Design by
Lucia Faust 
Makeup Department
Horst Allert .... makeup artist
Nicola Faas .... extras fitting
Delia Mündelein .... makeup artist
Nicole Rohner-Allert .... makeup artist
Production Management
Wolfram Gumbert .... unit manager
Beatrice Hallenbarter .... production manager
Friedegard-Nelly Schunk .... unit manager
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Moritz Heidelbach .... second assistant director
Lars Parlaska .... first assistant director
Art Department
Peter Ackermann .... assistant production designer
Alexander Dercks .... prop driver
Alexander Dercks .... set dresser
Janine Groth .... assistant property master: indoor
Jo Heins .... set dresser
Josef Jacob .... construction coordinator
Florian Junghans .... construction coordinator
Katrin Kolbe .... assistant property master: outdoor
Maurice M. Mohn .... assistant property master: indoor
Richard Mundt .... prop driver
Arnold Müller .... painter
Tanja Oppel .... set dresser
Manjo Richter .... set constructor
Sebastian Steinhauer-Dsenne .... painter
Nobu Takayama .... property master: indoor
Andreas Wenzel .... property master: outdoor
Alexander Wunderlich .... set dresser
Sound Department
Sylvain Remy .... sound (as Sylvain Rémy)
Visual Effects by
Ronney Afortu .... colorist
Michaela Braun .... Team-Assistenz: ScanlineVFX
Matthias Brauner .... main title designer & animator: ARRI
Christian Burggraf .... Systemadministration: ScanlineVFX
Timm Dapper .... lead Massive technical director: ScanlineVFX
Gabriel Dedic .... 2D supervisor: ScanlineVFX
Thomas Diesselhorst .... titles
Andreas Frickinger .... compositing artist: ScanlineVFX
Dirk Frischmuth .... digital artist
Lena Gieseke .... 3D Artist: ScanlineVFX
Rene Grosser .... 3D Artist: ScanlineVFX
Thomas Hain .... motion capture & Massive simulation: Circle & Lines
Carla Heinzel .... Massive technical director: ScanlineVFX
Sebastian Hirsch .... senior 3D artist: ScanlineVFX
Sebastian Hirsch .... senior shading & texturing artist: ScanlineVFX
Finlay Hogg .... compositing artist: ScanlineVFX
Alexander Hupperich .... senior modelling artist
Oliver Kirchhoff .... 3D Artist: ScanlineVFX
Claudia Knorr .... 3D Artist: ScanlineVFX
Christian Kratzert .... 3D Artist: ScanlineVFX
Markus Kuhlo .... 3D Artist: ScanlineVFX
Dirk Mauche .... modelling lead: ScanlineVFX
Michel Mielke .... VFX Producer: ScanlineVFX
Jan-Hilmar Petersen .... set supervisor: ScanlineVFX
Christian Pokorny .... 3D supervisor: ScanlineVFX
Thorsten Rolle .... 3D Artist: ScanlineVFX
Benjamin Ross .... matte painter: ScanlineVFX
Michael Scheffler .... Systemadministration: ScanlineVFX
Markus 'Maggi' Selchow .... visual effects
Sepp Sonntag .... 3D Artist: ScanlineVFX
Sepp Sonntag .... matte painter: ScanlineVFX
Alexander Stania .... lead modeling td: Circle and Lines
Tim Stern .... Compositing Lead: ScanlineVFX
Duc Minh Tran .... 3D Artist: ScanlineVFX
Hans Vollmer .... motion capture & Massive simulation: Circle & Lines
Mortimer Warlimont .... Compositing Lead: ScanlineVFX
José Manuel Weil .... senior lighting & rendering artist: ScanlineVFX
Florian Werzinski .... 3D Artist: ScanlineVFX
Bjoern Wortmann .... compositing artist: ScanlineVFX
Camera and Electrical Department
Moritz Anton .... assistant camera
Hannes Casper .... lighting technician
Marcel Flienert .... assistant grip
Stefan Hase .... grip
Thomas Korda .... steadicam operator
Thomas Kost .... still photographer
Mirco Lenke .... lighting technician (as Mirko Lenke)
Michael Meusel .... lighting technician
Moritz Müller .... first assistant camera (second unit)
Patrick Peters .... video operator
Torben Schmidt .... assistant lighting technician
Christian Thümmler .... gaffer
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Conny Frei .... wardrobe
Ursula Münstermann .... assistant costume designer
Ramona Petersen .... assistant costume designer
Meiken Reissig .... wardrobe
Editorial Department
Andreas Lipke .... assistant editor
Transportation Department
Markus Eberhardt .... production driver
Uwe Helbich .... transportation coordinator
Jörg Henning .... production driver
Marc Lehmann .... production driver
Gaby Meyers .... facility/truck driver
Franzo Soli .... prop driver
Other crew
Nina Bärmann .... production trainee
Nic Diedrich .... location scout
Silke Christina Engler .... continuity
Britta Frantzen .... production assistant
Heike Frielingdsdorf .... production trainee
Margret Höher .... production coordinator
Felix Hüsken .... production trainee
Christian Kohlbach .... traffic blocker
Katharina Lindenau .... production trainee
Sergej Maier .... assistant set manager
Stefan Möller .... location scout
Skipper Norden .... location manager
Skipper Norden .... set manager
Benno Pastewka .... location scout
Lilian Scharnhorst .... production trainee
Angie Simaifar .... location scout
Stefan Arndt .... thanks
Bruno Lambert .... dedicatee
Margaret Lambert .... dedicatee (as Margaret Bergmann-Lambert)

Production CompaniesDistributorsSpecial EffectsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Germany:100 min | Argentina:100 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

Anachronisms: The steam engine 52 6106 was not built before 1943, class 50/52 locomotives were built starting 1939.See more »


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9 out of 17 people found the following review useful.
"He didn't want to embarrass the Nazis", 4 August 2010
Author: Red-125 from Upstate New York

Berlin 36 (2009), is a German film directed by Kaspar Heidelbach. As the name implies, the action is set before and during the 1936 Summer Olympics in Nazi Germany.

German politicians were caught on the horns of a dilemma--some of their finest athletes were Jewish. The Nazis would rather lose a medal for Germany than admit that Jewish athletes could be among the world's greatest.

When it became obvious that German Jews were being systematically kept out of the competition, progressive U.S. citizens called for a U.S. boycott of the Olympics. However, Avery Brundage, the U.S. Olympic President, would have none of this. Not only did he want U.S. athletes to compete, which at least is understandable, but he was a known Nazi sympathizer and anti-Semite. (Not just my opinion--check out his Wikipedia entry.) So, the problem was solved by having the Germans give assurances that German Jewish athletes could, indeed, compete at the Olympics, and then making sure that they didn't actually compete.

Caught in this sick, volatile situation is Gretel Bergmann (played by the lovely Karoline Herfurth) who is certainly the best woman high jumper in Germany, and possibly the best in the world. The Nazis were determined that she would not compete, and one method they chose to assure this was to bring onto the team an untried, but gifted, athlete named Marie Ketteler. Both Gretel and Marie understand what's going on, but they nonetheless form an unlikely friendship and alliance.

In the ghastly situation present in Nazi Germany in 1936, whether or not an athlete competes in the high jump may seem extremely trivial. However, the movie gives a good sense of how thoroughly Naziism pervaded the entire fabric of pre-war Germany, and how readily non-Germans with fascist tendencies played along with Hitler's plans.

Incidentally, although this is not portrayed in the film, Brundage also saw to it that some American Jewish athletes were removed from Olympic competition because "he didn't want to embarrass the Nazis." He was just a great all-around sportsman.

We saw this film at the wonderful Rochester Jewish Film Festival. Some of the effects of the large-scale stadium productions will be lost on the small screen, but the intense parts of the film will work well on DVD.

For some reason, this movie has earned a ridiculously low IMDb average of 6.5. Hard to believe and, to me, inexplicable. Ignore the rating. Find this film and see it!

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