Ingmar Bergman Poster


Jump to: Overview (4)  | Mini Bio (1)  | Family (4)  | Trade Mark (9)  | Trivia (50)  | Personal Quotes (33)

Overview (4)

Born in Uppsala, Uppsala län, Sweden
Died in Fårö, Gotlands län, Sweden  (natural causes)
Birth NameErnst Ingmar Bergman
Height 5' 10½" (1.79 m)

Mini Bio (1)

Ernst Ingmar Bergman was born July 14, 1918, the son of a priest. The film and T.V. series, The Best Intentions (1992) is biographical and shows the early marriage of his parents. The film Sunday's Children (1992) depicts a bicycle journey with his father. In the miniseries Private Confessions (1996) is the trilogy closed. Here, as in 'Den Goda Viljan' Pernilla August play his mother. Note that all three movies are not always full true biographical stories. He began his career early with a puppet theatre which he, his sister and their friends played with. But he was the manager. Strictly professional he begun writing in 1941. He had written a play called 'Kaspers död' (A.K.A. 'Kaspers Death') which was produced the same year. It became his entrance into the movie business as Stina Bergman (not a close relative), from the company S.F. (Swedish Filmindustry), had seen the play and thought that there must be some dramatic talent in young Ingmar. His first job was to save other more famous writers' poor scripts. Under one of that script-saving works he remembered that he had written a novel about his last year as a student. He took the novel, did the save-poor-script job first, then wrote a screenplay on his own novel. When he went back to S.F., he delivered two scripts rather than one. The script was Torment (1944) and was the fist Bergman screenplay that was put into film (by Alf Sjöberg). It was also in that movie Bergman did his first professional film-director job. Because Alf Sjöberg was busy, Bergman got the order to shoot the last sequence of the film. Ingmar Bergman is the father of Daniel Bergman, director, and Mats Bergman, actor at the Swedish Royal Dramatic Theater. Ingmar Bergman was also C.E.O. of the same theatre between 1963-1966, where he hired almost every professional actor in Sweden. In 1976 he had a famous tax problem. Bergman had trusted other people to advise him on his finances, but it turned out to be very bad advice. Bergman had to leave the country immediately, and so he went to Germany. A few years later he returned to Sweden and made his last theatrical film Fanny and Alexander (1982). In later life he retired from movie directing, but still wrote scripts for film and T.V. and directed plays at the Swedish Royal Dramatic Theatre for many years. He died peacefully in his sleep on July 30, 2007.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Anders ADe Dahnielson <adeswed@algonet.se>

Family (4)

Spouse Ingrid Bergman (11 November 1971 - 20 May 1995)  (her death)  (1 child)
Käbi Laretei (1959 - 1969)  (divorced)  (1 child)
Gun Grut (1951 - 1959)  (divorced)  (1 child)
Ellen Bergman (22 July 1945 - 1950)  (divorced)  (4 children)
Else Fisher (25 March 1943 - 1945)  (divorced)  (1 child)
Children Lena Bergman
Linn Ullmann
Bergman Jr, Ingmar
won Rosen, Maria
Daniel Bergman
Anna Bergman
Mats Bergman
Eva Bergman
Jan Bergman
Parents Bergman, Erik
Akerblom, Karen
Relatives Bergman, Dag (sibling)
Bergman, Margareta (sibling)

Trade Mark (9)

Close-ups of faces
Close-ups of ticking clocks
Dynamic use of shadows
Frequently casted Gunnar Björnstrand (23 films), Erland Josephson (14 films), Max von Sydow (13 films), Bibi Andersson (13 films), Liv Ullmann (10 films) and Ingrid Thulin (10 films).
Religious themes
Most of his films are around 90 minutes long
Frequently has a character surnamed "Jacobi"
Two characters having an intense and emotional - sometimes heated - conversation while barely looking at each other.
Theatre companies, often traveling ones.

Trivia (50)

Had a dispute with the Swedish Royal Dramatic Theatre about his production of the play "Misantropen". Directed it for Swedish television instead. Ironically, the chief of Swedish Television's 'Dramatic Department' has become chief of the Royal Dramatic Theatre.
Father of nine children. They include director Daniel Bergman (with Käbi Laretei), actress Anna Bergman, actor Mats Bergman, director Eva Bergman, director Jan Bergman (with Ellen Bergman), actress Lena Bergman, (with Else Fisher), airline captain Ingmar Bergman Jr. (born 1951) (with Gun Grut), writer Linn Ullmann, (with Liv Ullmann) and writer Maria Von Rosen (with Ingrid Bergman).
Swedish Film Institute announced Bergman will donate his raw footage, photographs and manuscripts from his films and plays to a new foundation established to honor him. (5 June 2002)
For many years, he and actor Erland Josephson have had an hour-long telephone conversation once a week, on Saturdays.
Was voted the 8th Greatest Film Director of all time by Entertainment Weekly,.
Biography in: John Wakeman, editor. "World Film Directors, Volume Two, 1945- 1985". Pages 103-115. New York: The H.W. Wilson Company, 1988.
He retired from filmmaking in 1984, and then in 2003, at the age of 85, he retired from directing plays.
The rock band Van Halen wrote a song called "The Seventh Seal" (from the "Balance" album) in honor of his films. The song talks about The Seventh Seal (1957) and The Virgin Spring (1960).
Has a daughter, Linn Ullmann, with actress Liv Ullmann. Linn, who played a child in several of her father's movies, became a literary critic, then novelist. Her debut novel, in 1999, was "Före du sover" (Before you fall asleep).
Inspired the word "Bergmanesque"
His movies The Virgin Spring (1960), Through a Glass Darkly (1961) and Fanny and Alexander (1982) were Oscar-nominated for "Best Foreign Language Film". All three movies won.
Father-in-law of Henning Mankell.
Likes to watch BMX racing on television.
No relation to Ingrid Bergman, although he was married to another Ingrid, Ingrid Bergman.
Among Woody Allen's biggest idols.
Published "Tre dagböcker", including the diaries of him, his fifth wife Ingrid Bergman and their daughter Maria Von Rosen (2004).
Was chosen the world's greatest living filmmaker by "Time" magazine (11 July 2005).
After their daughter Maria Von Rosen had been born out of wedlock in 1959, he finally married Ingrid Bergman (Ingrid von Rosen) in 1971. This was his only marriage which didn't end in divorce.
His grandmother introduced Ingmar to the cinema and went with him to several shows when he was a little boy, always in secrecy since he wasn't allowed to go to the movies by his strict father.
Was fluent in French.
He and Max von Sydow made 13 movies together: The Magician (1958), The Touch (1971), Mr. Sleeman Is Coming (1957) (not released), The Virgin Spring (1960), Winter Light (1963), Brink of Life (1958), The Passion of Anna (1969), Rabies (1958), The Seventh Seal (1957), Shame (1968), Wild Strawberries (1957), Through a Glass Darkly (1961) and Hour of the Wolf (1968).
His three favorite movies are: The Emigrants (1971), La dolce vita (1960) and Monsieur Hulot's Holiday (1953).
He and Ingrid Thulin made 10 movies together: A Dream Play (1963), The Magician (1958), After the Rehearsal (1984), Winter Light (1963), Brink of Life (1958), The Rite (1969), Wild Strawberries (1957), The Silence (1963), Hour of the Wolf (1968) and Cries & Whispers (1972).
He and Bibi Andersson made 13 movies together: The Magician (1958), The Touch (1971), The Devil's Eye (1960), All These Women (1964), Brink of Life (1958), Mr. Sleeman Is Coming (1957) (not released), The Passion of Anna (1969), Persona (1966), Scenes from a Marriage (1973), Rabies (1958), The Seventh Seal (1957), Wild Strawberries (1957) and Smiles of a Summer Night (1955).
His Top 11 films are (as presented at Goteborg Film Festival, Sweden in 1994): The Circus (1928), Port of Shadows (1938), The Conductor (1980), Raven's End (1963), The Passion of Joan of Arc (1928). The Phantom Carriage (1921), Rashomon (1950), The Road (1954), Sunset Blvd. (1950), Marianne & Juliane (1981), Andrei Rublev (1966).
He and Liv Ullmann made 10 movies together: Face to Face (1976), Autumn Sonata (1978), The Passion of Anna (1969), Persona (1966), Saraband (2003), Scenes from a Marriage (1973), The Serpent's Egg (1977), Shame (1968), Hour of the Wolf (1968) and Cries & Whispers (1972).
Is buried on the island of Fårö, where he had lived most of his life.
Lived on the island of Fårö since the early 1960s, but moved to Munich, Germany for a while battling with the Swedish government over alleged tax evasion.
Born to Erik Bergman, a Lutheran minister who later became the chaplain to the King of Sweden, and his wife Karen Åkerblom.
Was romantically linked to Harriet Andersson from 1952 to 1955 and Bibi Andersson from 1955 to 1959.
Erland Josephson appeared in 14 Bergman films as an actor in a span of almost 60 years (1946-2004): It Rains on Our Love (1946) ("It Rains on Our Love" (1946)), To Joy (1950) ("To Joy" (1950)), The Magician (1958) ("The Magician" (1959)), Brink of Life (1958) ("Brink of Life" (1959)), Hour of the Wolf (1968) ("Hour of the Wolf" (1968)), The Passion of Anna (1969) ("The Passion of Anna" (1970)), Cries & Whispers (1972) ("Cries and Whispers" (1972)), Scenes from a Marriage (1973) ("Scenes from a Marriage" (1974)), The Magic Flute (1975) ("The Magic Flute" (1975)), Face to Face (1976) ("Face to Face (1976)), Autumn Sonata (1978) ("Autumn Sonata" (1978)), Fanny and Alexander (1982), After the Rehearsal (1984) ("After the Rehearsal" (1984)), In the Presence of a Clown (1997) ("In the Presence of a Clown" (1997)), and Saraband (2003). In addition to acting in Bergman's films, Josephson also co-wrote Bergman's All These Women (1964) ("All These Women (1964)), one of Bergman's rare comedies (and his first film shot in color).
Among his fellow directors, he listed the three most significant to him as Federico Fellini, Victor Sjöström and Akira Kurosawa.
Profiled in "Films and Dreams: Tarkovsky, Bergman, Sokurov, Kubrick and Wong Kar-Wei" by Thurston Botz-Borsnstein. Lanham, MD: Scarecrow Press, 2008.
Considered Persona (1966) and Cries & Whispers (1972) his best movies.
10 of his films are listed in the 5th edition of 1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die (edited by Steven Schneider). He is the third best represented director (behind Alfred Hitchcock and Howard Hawks) and has the greatest number of writing credits on that list of any screenwriter. On the list are the films Smiles of a Summer Night (1955), The Seventh Seal (1957), Wild Strawberries (1957), Through a Glass Darkly (1961), Winter Light (1963), Persona (1966), Hour of the Wolf (1968), Shame (1968), Cries & Whispers (1972) and Fanny and Alexander (1982).
The Swedish film industry ground to a halt in 1951 due to a ten-month strike by studio personnel, intended as a protest against an "amusement tax" levied against motion picture producers. During this period he directed several TV commercials for a soap called Bris (i.e. Breeze). He later said he was "absurdly grateful" to get this job.
Directed 2 actresses to Oscar nominations: Liv Ullmann (Best Actress, Face to Face (1976)) and Ingrid Bergman (Best Actress, Autumn Sonata (1978)).
Fluently spoke Swedish, French and English.
He said his favorite Hollywood director was Billy Wilder.
He was an admirer of the films of François Truffaut and Jean-Pierre Melville.
Often directed plays for the radio.
Is going to appear in the new 200 Kronors banknote in 2015.
Like his fellow World Cinema masters, Akira Kurosawa (who started in the Japanese art world) and Federico Fellini (who started in journalism) he came to cinema via circumvention after working as a theater director.
Has now retired from directing, emptied his apartment in Stockholm and his room at the Dramatic Theater, and lives permanently at Fårö, Gotland (Sweden). [May 2004]
Recovering from hip replacement surgery. [January 2007]
Died on the same day as Michelangelo Antonioni.
One of the favorite filmmakers of Andrei Tarkovsky, Francis Ford Coppola, Guillermo del Toro, Woody Allen, Stanley Kubrick, Wim Wenders, Paul Schrader and Steven Spielberg. Spielberg claimed in an interview to have seen all of Bergman's films.
He was approached by Italian television in the seventies, about making a TV-movie based on the life of Jesus Christ. He wrote a synopsis and planned on filming the entire movie in the Swedish province Gotland (for example, the rocky beaches of Langhammars on the island of Fårö were to serve as Golgatha). Eventually, Franco Zeffirelli was commissioned to helm the project, which became Jesus of Nazareth (1977).
He had an intense dislike of animals, which is why they are sometimes seen dead in his films.
His daughter Anna, born 1951, has appeared in a number of films and is married to a former London policeman.

Personal Quotes (33)

The theater is like a faithful wife. The film is the great adventure - the costly, exacting mistress.
No form of art goes beyond ordinary consciousness as film does, straight to our emotions, deep into the twilight room of the soul.
I hope I never get old so I get religious.
In a quarrel with one of my sons, I said, "I know I've been a lousy father". He said, "A father? You haven't been a father at all!"
[on Orson Welles] For me he's just a hoax. It's empty. It's not interesting. It's dead. Citizen Kane (1941), which I have a copy of, is all the critics' darling, always at the top of every poll taken, but I think it's a total bore. Above all, the performances are worthless. The amount of respect that movie's got is absolutely unbelievable.
[on Orson Welles] I've never liked Welles as an actor, because he's not really an actor. In Hollywood you have two categories, you talk about actors and personalities. Welles was an enormous personality, but when he plays Othello, everything goes down the drain, you see, that's when he croaks. In my eyes he's an infinitely overrated filmmaker.
[on Jean-Luc Godard] I've never gotten anything out of his movies. They have felt constructed, faux intellectual and completely dead. Cinematographically uninteresting and infinitely boring. Godard is a fucking bore. He's made his films for the critics. One of the movies, Masculin Féminin (1966), was shot here in Sweden. It was mind-numbingly boring.
Among today's directors I'm of course impressed by Steven Spielberg and Scorsese [Martin Scorsese], and Coppola [Francis Ford Coppola], even if he seems to have ceased making films, and Steven Soderbergh - they all have something to say, they're passionate, they have an idealistic attitude to the filmmaking process. Soderbergh's Traffic (2000) is amazing. Another great couple of examples of the strength of American cinema is American Beauty (1999) and Magnolia (1999).
[on Michelangelo Antonioni] He's done two masterpieces, you don't have to bother with the rest. One is Blow-Up (1966), which I've seen many times, and the other is La Notte (1961), also a wonderful film, although that's mostly because of the young Jeanne Moreau. In my collection I have a copy of Il Grido (1957) and damn what a boring movie it is. So devilishly sad, I mean. You know, Antonioni never really learned the trade. He concentrated on single images, never realizing that film is a rhythmic flow of images, a movement. Sure, there are brilliant moments in his films. But I don't feel anything for L'Avventura (1960), for example. Only indifference. I never understood why Antonioni was so incredibly applauded. And I thought his muse Monica Vitti was a terrible actress.
I write scripts to serve as skeletons awaiting the flesh and sinew of images.
I think I have made just one picture that I really like, and that is Winter Light (1963). Everything is exactly as I wanted to have it, in every second of this picture.
Film as dream, film as music. No art passes our conscience in the way film does, and goes directly to our feelings, deep down into the dark rooms of our souls.
Everything is worth precisely as much as a belch, the difference being that a belch is more satisfying.
My basic view of things is - not to have any basic view of things. From having been exceedingly dogmatic, my views on life have gradually dissolved. They don't exist any longer.
I'm deeply fixated on my childhood. Some impressions are extremely vivid, light, smell, and all. There are moments when I can wander through my childhood's landscape, through rooms long ago, remember how they were furnished, where the pictures hung on the walls, the way the light fell. It's like a film-little scraps of a film, which I set running and which I can reconstruct to the last detail-except their smell.
[on Andrei Tarkovsky] When film is not a document, it is dream. That is why Tarkovsky is the greatest of them all. He moves with such naturalness in the room of dreams. He doesn't explain. What should he explain anyhow? He is a spectator, capable of staging his visions in the most unwieldy but, in a way, the most willing of media. All my life I have hammered on the doors of the rooms in which he moves so naturally. Only a few times have I managed to creep inside. Most of my conscious efforts have ended in embarrassing failure - The Serpent's Egg (1977), The Touch (1971), Face to Face (1976) and so on.
[on Federico Fellini] He is enormously intuitive. He is intuitive; he is creative; he is an enormous force. He is burning inside with such heat. Collapsing. Do you understand what I mean? The heat from his creative mind, it melts him. He suffers from it; he suffers physically from it. One day when he can manage this heat and can set it free, I think he will make pictures you have never seen in your life. He is rich. As every real artist, he will go back to his sources one day. He will find his way back.
[on Alfred Hitchcock] I think he's a very good technician. And he has something in Psycho (1960), he had some moments. "Psycho" is one of his most interesting pictures because he had to make the picture very fast, with very primitive means. He had little money, and this picture tells very much about him. Not very good things. He is completely infantile, and I would like to know more - no, I don't want to know - about his behavior with, or, rather, against women. But this picture is very interesting.
When I was young, I was extremely scared of dying. But now I think it a very, very wise arrangement. It's like a light that is extinguished. Not very much to make a fuss about.
I'd prostitute my talents if it would further my cause, steal if there was no way out, killing my friends or anyone else if it would help my art.
I've had to learn everything about movies by myself. For the theater, I studied with a wonderful old man in Goteborg, where I spent four years. He was a hard, difficult man, but he knew the theater- and I learned from him. For the movies, however, there was no one. Before the War, I was a schoolboy. Then, during the War, we got see no foreign films at all. By the time it was over, I was working had to support a wife and three children. Before, fortunately, I am by nature an autodidact, one who can teach himself- though it's an uncomfortable thing at times. Self-taught people sometimes cling too much to the technical side, the sure side and place technical perfection too high.
New cities arouse too many sensations in me. They give me too many impressions to experience at the same time. They all crowd in on me. Being in a new city overwhelms me, unsettles me.
To shoot a film is to organize an entire universe.
[on Andrei Tarkovsky] My discovery of Tarkovsky's first film was like a miracle. Suddenly I found myself standing at the door of a room, the key to which, until then, had never been given to me. It was a room I had always wanted to enter and where he was moving freely and fully at ease. I felt encouraged and stimulated: someone was expressing what I had always wanted to say without knowing how. Tarkovsky is for me the greatest, the one who invented a new language, true to the nature of film, as it captures life as a reflection, life as a dream.
[on Akira Kurosawa] Now I want to make it plain that The Virgin Spring (1960) must be regarded as an aberration. It's touristic, a lousy imitation of Kurosawa.
Fellini, Kurosawa and Buñuel move in the same fields as Tarkovsky. Antonioni was on his way, but expired, suffocated by his own tediousness.
Working in this medium and being a man of the theater, I'm like the common whore. I have an enormous need for people to like me and what I'm doing. That it be accepted and praised and so forth. It's always painful to be disapproved of.
[Interviewed for Sommar on Swedish Radio P1 in 2004] I have asked prominent composers. I have asked prominent musicians. Several conductors. Where does the music come from? What, how can it be that we are the only animals, on the entire globe of the earth that makes music? And why do we do it and how has it come to be? That is something I really would like to know because none of these people I have asked has been able to give any answer to "where does the music come from?" "Why do we have music?" Personally I have an impression, that the music is a thing we have been given as a gift. I am not a believer but I do still believe that the music is a gift, so that we might have an impression of realities and worlds beyond the world we live in.
Directing is more fun with women. Everything is.
My professor told me when I started in the '40s that a director should listen and keep his mouth shut. Took me a long time to understand I talked too much. Now I know you should listen with your ears - and your heart.
[2002 interview] I watch films. I go to the cinema five days a week. At three in the afternoon, I go to the cinema. Swedish film has had a surge of power and vitality. What sometimes still worries me is that....I know Antonioni said on one occasion something really good. He said that, "A film is a curious medium, in the sense that if you have something to say, you can really say it with film and you can be as clumsy as you like." Perhaps he didn't say "clumsy". You see what I mean? And he wasn't a technician, Antonioni, God should bear witness to that. But he said one or two things. And he made two masterpieces: Blow-Up (1966) and La Notte (1961). But I think that those that are emerging are so incredibly talented. These young emerging directors. They know the job well. But it's not so often that they really have anything to say.
[the last thing he said to actor Peter Stormare] Time and space separates us. But our souls are connected.
[1982 interview, on the set of Fanny and Alexander (1982), on retiring from making feature-films] I will do some 50-minute TV plays, and perhaps another opera like "The Magic Flute", but I prefer to leave filmmaking to younger people. In earlier days, when I made these pronouncements about each film being my last, I said so with quite a different emphasis. I was a financial catastrophe, and I never knew when I would be forced to quit the industry. But now I need too much energy. Besides, it can never be more fun than it is now.

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