Stroheim, Erich von

Stroheim, Erich von
orig. Erich Oswald Stroheim

born Sept. 22, 1885, Vienna, Austria
died May 12, 1957, near Paris, France

Austrian-U.S. film director and actor.

He was the son of a Jewish hatmaker, and he immigrated to the U.S. after his military service. He arrived in Hollywood in 1914, where he worked for D.W. Griffith and performed his trademark role as a Prussian officer. His directorial debut, Blind Husbands (1919), was followed by The Devil's Passkey (1920) and Foolish Wives (1922). Greed (1924), his masterpiece, was a landmark in film realism; however, it was cut from 9 hours to 140 minutes
without his approval
before its release. It was followed by The Merry Widow (1925), The Wedding March (1928), and Queen Kelly (1928). His extravagance and demand for artistic control scuttled his directing career, and he returned to acting, notably in Grand Illusion (1937) and Sunset Boulevard (1950).

Erich von Stroheim in Foolish Wives, 1922.

Brown Brothers

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▪ German actor and director
original name  Erich Oswald Stroheim 
born September 22, 1885, Vienna, Austria
died May 12, 1957, near Paris, France
 one of the most critically respected motion-picture directors of the 20th century, best known for the uncompromising realism and accuracy of detail in his films. He also wrote screenplays and won recognition as an actor, notably for roles as sadistic, monocled Prussian officers.

      Various sources provide contradictory information about Stroheim's early life, probably because Stroheim himself was fond of embellishing his past. He was not, as reported in several accounts, descended from Viennese nobility, nor had he been an officer in the Austrian army. Rather, he was the son of a Jewish hatmaker, and he served in the army—though he was never an officer—before coming to the United States in 1909. He worked as an actor and as assistant to the leading director D.W. Griffith (Griffith, D W) in such famous early films as The Birth of a Nation (1915) and Intolerance (1916). Stroheim wrote the script and played the leading role in Blind Husbands (1919), his first independently directed picture. As an early exemplar of the changing postwar morality, it intimated that a woman had the right to seek love outside of an unsatisfying marriage. Stroheim's growing obsession with painstaking detail was reflected in The Devil's Passkey (1920; now lost) and Foolish Wives (1922), pictures that enhanced his reputation as a director.

      Stroheim's masterpiece was Greed (1924), an adaptation of Frank Norris (Norris, Frank)'s novel McTeague (1899), which dealt with the power of money to corrupt. A landmark in film realism, its grim irony and brutal honesty were untempered by optimism or compassion. Stroheim engaged in many legendary battles with studio executives over the years, but none so bitter as when Greed was cut from its original 9-hour length to 140 minutes without Stroheim's approval or participation. Despite the cuts, the film retained much of its power, because Stroheim had concentrated the meaning of each scene in carefully constructed detail rather than by the juxtaposition of scenes. It remains a film classic and strongly influenced such later directors as King Vidor (Vidor, King) and Josef von Sternberg (Sternberg, Josef von).

 Although The Merry Widow (1925), The Wedding March (1928), and Queen Kelly (1928) were commercially successful, Stroheim's reputation for extravagance, his fanatical insistence on complete artistic freedom regardless of any economic considerations, and his sophisticated treatment of controversial subjects ended his Hollywood directing career. He returned to Europe as an actor and thereafter appeared only occasionally in American pictures, such as Five Graves to Cairo (1943). One of his notable characterizations was the prison-camp commandant in Jean Renoir's La Grande Illusion (1937), and he was nominated for an Academy Award for his supporting performance in Billy Wilder (Wilder, Billy)'s Sunset Boulevard (1950).

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Universalium. 2010.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • STROHEIM, ERICH VON — (1885–1957), film actor and director. Born in Vienna, Austria, Von Stroheim, with his bullet shaped head and his monocle, became famous for his Teutonic roles and was dubbed the man you love to hate. He directed and acted in Hollywood, and his… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • Stroheim, Erich von — • ШТРО ГЕЙМ, Штрохейм (Stroheim) Эрих фон (полное имя и фам. Эрих Освальд Ханс Карл Мария Штрогейм фон Норденвальд, Stroheim von Nordenwald) (22.9.1885 12.5.1957)    амер. режиссёр, актёр, сценарист, писатель. Уроженец Австрии. Получил воен.… …   Кино: Энциклопедический словарь

  • Stroheim, Erich von — orig. Erich Oswald Stroheim (22 sep. 1885, Viena, Austria–12 may. 1957, cerca de París, Francia). Director de cine y actor austríaco estadounidense. Hijo de un fabricante de sombreros judío, emigró a EE.UU. después de cumplir el servicio militar …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Stroheim, Erich von — pseud. di Stroheim, Erich Oswald …   Sinonimi e Contrari. Terza edizione

  • Stroheim,Erich von — Stro·heim (strōʹhīm ), Erich von. 1885 1957. Austrian born American actor and director who is best known for his roles in La Grande Illusion (1937) and Sunset Boulevard (1950). * * * …   Universalium

  • Stroheim, Erich von —    см. Штрогейм, Эрих фон …   Режиссерская энциклопедия. Кино США

  • Stroheim, Erich von — (1885 1957)    Austrian film director and actor. He was the son of middle class parents in Vienna. He went to the US in 1909, and first appeared on screen in 1914. His films include Blind Husbands, Foolish Wives, Greed, The Merry Widow, The… …   Dictionary of Jewish Biography

  • Erich von Stroheim — (geboren als Erich Oswald Stroheim; * 22. September 1885 in Wien; † 12. Mai 1957 auf Schloss Maurepas bei Paris) war ein US amerikanischer Regisseur, Schauspieler und …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Erich von Stroheim — Saltar a navegación, búsqueda Erich von Stroheim Erich von Stroheim Nombre real Erich Oswald Stroheim Nacimiento …   Wikipedia Español

  • STROHEIM (E. von) — Stroheim est un des grands réalisateurs de l’époque du muet, doublé d’une personnalité fascinante et ambiguë. Ses films conservent une valeur intrinsèque en même temps qu’ils ont exercé une influence profonde, durable et salutaire sur l’évolution …   Encyclopédie Universelle

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