Horn, Camilla

ACTOR (GERMANY)
BORN 25 Apr 1903, Frankfurt am Main - DIED 14 Aug 1996, Gilching (near Starnberg)
GRAVE LOCATION Herrsching am Ammersee, Bayern: Friedhof, Mitterweg (Teil IV, Feld 4)

Daughter of a civil servant. She was educated as a dressmaker and worked in Erfurt. She also took dance lessons and in the early twenties she joined Rudolf Nelson's Kabarett at the Kurfürstendamm in Berlin as a stage dancer.

In 1925 she was a double for the legs of Lil Dagover in F.W. Murnau's "Tartüff". Murnau's eye fell on her and in 1926 he gave her the part of Gretchen in his UFA production "Faust". "Faust" made her famous at once. She was signed by United Artists and big boss Joseph M. Schenck himself took care of her career and even wanted to marry her. In later years Camilla claimed that they were friends but not lovers. She was able to make several successful Hollywood movies, mostly playing vamps. In "Tempest" (1928) and in "Eternal Love" (1929) she starred with John Barrymore. During that time she had a dog called "Tempest". But she got homesick and claimed that her English was too bad for movies with spoken words. This was not true, but she didn't want to offend the Americans. She was to appear in 70 more movies in Germany, England and France.

After she had returned to her home country she divorced her first husband, the business man Klaus Geerts, and lived with Gustav Diessl for a few years. She called him her greatest love in her autobiography.

In the thirties she refused to follow the official line of the nazi's and she was prosecuted for a monetary offense. But Goebbels pardoned her and she was able to act again, starting with the anti-Bolshevist movie "Weiße Sklaven" (also known as "Panzerkreuzer Sebastopol"). In her autobiography she describes how Hitler had forbidden the movie and Goebbels wanted to negotiate with her about the alterations that should be made. He tried to seduce her, but claiming that a man like him didn't need this she escaped. After the war the British tribunal at Delmenhorst convicted her for minor offenses (among them travelling without permission) and she was imprisoned for three months at the women's prison in Vechta.

From 1936 onwards she had lived with Louis Graveure, but he left for America and after 1945 it became clear that he had plundered her Swiss bank account. She married the architect Kurt Kurfis on December 12th, 1938 and around 1947 the Swissman Robert Snyder. In 1953 she married again, this time Rudolf Mühlfenzel, who was employed at the Bayerische Rundfunk. She divorced him in 1963.

As late as 1987 she had a part in "Die letzten Tage von Schloß Königswald" by Peter Schamonis for which she received the Bavarian Film Award. She spent her old age at Herrsching (near the Ammersee below Munich) and died at Gilching near Starnberg, where she had lived during the last year of her life.

Related persons
• was a friend of Chaplin, Charles Spencer
• lived with Diessl, Gustav
• was a friend of Harvey, Lilian
• cooperated with Kowa, Victor de
• was directed by Murnau, Friedrich Wilhelm
• met Wirth, Else 'Pitty'

Sources
• Horn, Camilla, Verliebt in die Liebe, Erinnerungen, Herbig, München, 1985
Portrait of the actress Camilla Horn by Thomas Staedeli
Internet Movie Database

Images

Camilla Horn as Gretchen in Murnau's "Faust".
 

Camilla Horn as Gretchen in Murnau's "Faust".
 

The grave of Camilla Horn at the cemetery in Herrsching, Bavaria.
Picture by Androom (26 Aug 2003)

 

Camilla Horn.
(1930/1931)

 

Gustav Fröhlich and Camilla Horn in "Rakoczymarsch".
(c.1933)

 

Gustav Fröhlich and Camilla Horn in "Rakoczymarsch".
(c.1933)

 

Camilla Horn.
(1929/1930)

 

Camilla Horn.
(1927/1928)

 

Camilla Horn.
(1928/1929)

 

Camilla Horn.
(1927/1928)

 

Camilla Horn.
(1928/1929)

 

Camilla Horn.
(1930/1931)

 

Camilla Horn.
(1930/1931)

 

Camilla Horn.
(1931/1932)

 

Camilla Horn.
(1933-1934)

 

Camilla Horn.
 

Camilla Horn.
(1941-1944)

 

Camilla Horn.
(1937-1938)

 

Camilla Horn.
(1937-1938)
Picture by Haenchen

 

Camilla Horn.
(1933-1934)
Picture by Angelo Photos

 

Camilla Horn.
 

Camilla Horn.
(1932-1933)
Picture by Gerstenberg-Dührkoop, Berlin

 

The grave of Camilla Horn at the cemetery in Herrsching, Bavaria.
Picture by Androom (18 Aug 2012)

 

The grave of Camilla Horn at the cemetery in Herrsching, Bavaria.
Picture by Androom (18 Aug 2012)

 


Horney, Brigitte

Published: 1 Jan 2006
Last update: 10 Mar 2013