Wangenheim, Gustav von

ACTOR, DIRECTOR, THEATRE MANAGER, AUTHOR (GERMANY)
BORN 18 Feb 1895, Wiesbaden, Hessen - DIED 5 Aug 1975, Berlin (Ost)
BIRTH NAME Wangenheim, Ingo Clemens Gustav Adolf, Freiherr von
GRAVE LOCATION Berlin: Städtischer Zentralfriedhof Friedrichsfelde, Gudrunstrasse, Lichtenberg (Mittelweg hinter der Feierhalle)

Gustav von Wangenheim was the son of the actors Eduard von Winterstein and Minna Mengers. After his mother killed herself when he was four years old his father married the actress Hedwig Pauly. In 1912 he entered Max Reinhardt's acting school. He stood on the stage in Vienna, Darmstadt and Berlin and in 1916 he made his movie debut. His best known part was that of Thomas Hutter in "Nosferatu" (1922).

In 1922 he joined the KPD, the German cumminst party. In 1925 he founded the travelling worker's theatre group "Die Barbusse-Troupe" and between 1928 and 1933 he was the leader "Truppe 1931" that originated from a communist cell in the Artist Colony in Berlin. Inge Franke was a member of that group and she became his wife. As an opponent of nazism he emigrated to the USSR with Inge in 1933. There he wrote and created the movie "Kämpfer" but it was forbidden by Stalin by Stalin and several of the people who worked on it were arrested and executed. In 1936 he reputedly denounced the actress Carola Neher and her husband Anatol Becker as Trotzkists. Becker was executed and Neher was sentenced to ten years of hard labour and died five years later. His son, the actor Friedel von Wangenheim, was born in Moscow in 1939. He and Inge also had twin daughters, Elisabeth ("Li") and Elenora ("Lo").

In 1940 the nazis condemned him to death in absence and he obtained citizenship of the USSR. In 1941 he was moved to Taschkent, but in 1943 he was able to return to Moscow and in 1945 he returned to Germany. He was the manager of the Deutschen Theater in Berlin for a while. He supported Gustaf Gründgens during his imprisonment and Ggründgens immediately met him after his return to Berlin in 1946. After he left the Deutschen Theater he worked as an actor and a director for DEFA. He divorced Inge in 1954 and died in 1975 in Berlin.

Family
• Father: Winterstein, Eduard von
• Wife: Wangenheim, Inge von (1931-1954)

Images

The grave of Gustav von Wangenheim and Eduard von Winterstein at the Städtischer Zentralfriedhof Friedrichsfelde, Berlin.
Picture by Androom (07 Aug 2019)

 

Sources
• Hoffmann, Joachim, Berlin Friedrichsfelde, Ein Deutscher Nationalfriedhof, Das Neue Berlin, Berlin, 2001
• Mende, Hans-Jürgen, Lexicon Berliner Grabstätten, Haude & Spener, 2006


Wangenheim, Inge von

Published: 21 Jun 2020
Last update: 06 Sep 2020