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Erwin Geschonneck Poster

Biography

Jump to: Overview (2)  | Mini Bio (1)  | Spouse (4)  | Trivia (11)

Overview (2)

Born in Bartenstein, East Prussia, Germany [now Bartoszyce, Warminsko-Mazurskie, Poland]
Died in Berlin, Germany

Mini Bio (1)

Erwin Geschonneck was born on 27 December 1906 in Bartenstein/East Prussia (now Poland). In the Twenties, he became a member of the Communistic Party of Germany. After rise of Nazism, he emigrated to Poland, later to Latvia and Czechoslovakia. In the Soviet Union he became a member of a German theatre company. In 1938 he was arrested in Prague and was deported to different concentration camps. Finally he was evacuated from the concentration camp of Neuengamme near Hamburg to Denmark. But the boat, the Cap Arcona, was accidentally bombed by the RAF. The ship sank in the bay of Lübeck, and Geschonneck was one of only a few survivors. In 1945 he played theatre in Hamburg and had his film debut in Helmut Käutner's post-war drama 'In Jenen Tagen'. It was the famous 'Bertholt Brecht' who offered him a contract for his Berlin Ensemble. Geschonneck moved to East Berlin and became a star of the newly founded DEFA, the only production company of the German Democratic Republic.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Yancey

Spouse (4)

Heike Geschonneck (1971 - 12 March 2008) ( his death) ( 1 child)
Doris Weikow (? - ?) ( divorced) ( 1 child)
Hannelore Wüst (? - ?) ( divorced) ( 1 child)
? (? - ?) ( divorced)

Trivia (11)

Father of two sons, Matti Geschonneck and Alexander Geschonneck, and a daughter, Fina.
His father was a poor shoemaker, who moved to Berlin with his family in 1909 to work as a nightwatchman. Thus, Erwin started working as a delivery boy and servant at the age of 14.
Was voted "best East German actor ever" in a survey by "Film und Fernsehen" magazine (1992).
Had two older siblings, Bruno and Käthe.
Was awarded East Germany's prestigious National Prize four times (1954, 1960, 1961, 1968).
Despite being a strong supporter of the communist movement, he appeared in several movies criticizing the East German government, which were not banned due to his reputation.
Became a member of Bertolt Brecht's famous Berlin Ensemble in 1949, where he played many important stage roles such as "Dorfrichter Adam" in "Der zerbrochene Krug" ("The Broken Jug") or "Don Juan".
Was married four times.
The plot of Der Mann von der Cap Arcona (1982) is based on his experiences during the sinking of the Cap Arcona.
Was chosen Honorary Member of the German Film Academy (2004).
Joined the Communist Party of Germany (KPD) in 1929.

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