Axel von Ambesser

Axel von Ambesser

Additional Names: Axel Eugen Alexander von Oesterreich (Geburtsname)
Darsteller, Regie, Drehbuch, Musik, Sonstiges
*22.06.1910 Hamburg; †06.09.1988 München

Biography

Axel Eugen Alexander von Oesterreich was born in Hamburg on June 22nd 1910. Following the advise of his father, a merchant originally hailing from St. Petersburg, he changed his name to "Axel von Ambesser". Although, not classically trained as an actor, the theatre-crazy Ambesser was given parts at the Hamburger Kammerspiele. This was followed by engagements in Augsburg and Munich, where he was often cast as the young hero, charming suitor and comic relief. In 1936, her performed at the Deutsche Theater in Berlin, and until 1945, he appeared at the Theater in der Josefstadt, Vienna and the Berliner Staatstheater.

In 1935, a small role in Carl Boese"s "Der Gefangene des Königs" marked Axel von Ambesser"s screen debut. Although still focusing on his work in the theatre, he regularly appeared in films, for instance in Erich Engel"s romantic comedy "Ein hoffnungsloser Fall" (1939), alongside Zarah Leander in Carl Froelich"s "Das Herz der Königin" (1940) or as a Regular Joe harrased by the authorities in Wolfgang Staudte"s satire "Der Mann, dem man den Namen stahl" (1944/45), which was never released in Nazi Germany but rediscovered almost 70 years later.

After WWII, Ambesser was an ensemble member at the Münchner Kammerspiele before he became a freelancing actor in the late 1940s. He also started writing and directing for stage, screen and television, and in some cases, he directed himself as the lead of his own plays. And with hits like "Das Abgründige in Herrn Gerstenberg", "Wie führe ich eine Ehe?" or "Omelette Surprise", Ambesser was the most popular of the living German theatre authors in the post-war years.


In 1953, he made his debut as film director with the comedy "Glück muß man haben" (also released under the title "Drei, von denen man spricht"). Until, the mid-1960s, he directed 19 feature films, including "Der Pauker" (1958), "Der Gauner und der liebe Gott" (1960) and "Der brave Soldat Schwejk" (1960), which starred Heinz Rühmann and was awarded the Golden Globe for Best Foreign Language Film. Other box office hits were "Kohlhiesels Töchter" (1962) and "Er kann’s nicht lassen" (1962), and Ambesser also continued to work as an actor, sometimes playing supporting roles in his own films or appearing in other productions like Rolf Hansen"s "Gustav Adolfs Page" (1960). Ambesser also scripted the dialogue for the German-language release of Chaplin"s "Monsieur Verdoux" and dubbed Chaplin for the film.

From the mid-1960s on, Ambesser exclusively worked as an author and director for television. Among his works were musical comedies like "Der fidele Bauer" (1971) or elegant romances like "Begegnung im Herbst" (1977), starring Hilde Krahl and himself. In 1975, he was awarded the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany.

In the early 1980s, Axel von Ambesser mostly retired from television but continued to work in the theatre. In 1985, he published his memoirs, and the same year, he was awarded the German Film Prize for his lifetime achievement. He passed away in Munich on September 6th 1988.

From 1937 on, Axel von Ambesser was married to Inge von Ambesser, who passed away in 1995. The couple has a daughter, Gwendolyn von Ambesser, who works as director, author and actress.

Filmography

1986 Der Vorhang fällt
Cast, Screenplay
 
1985/1986 Aus familiären Gründen
Director
 
1985/1986 Aus familiären Gründen. 2. Ein Stück Vergangenheit
Director
 
1985 Großer Bahnhof
Cast
 
1984 Alte Sünden rosten nicht
Cast, Director
 
1984 Ein idealer Gatte
Cast
 
1983 Die Violette Mütze oder Morgen sind wir endlich reich...!
Director
 
1983 Frau Juliane Winkler
Cast
 
1982/1983 Geliebte Grethe. Erinnerungen an Grethe Weiser
Miscellaneous
 
1979 Der Eisvogel
Cast, Director
 
1977 Begegnung im Herbst
Cast, Director, Screenplay
 
1976 Annoncen-Mord
Cast
 
1974 Die schöne Helena
Director
 
1974 Schlagerfestival 1929
Cast
 
1972 Tod auf der Themse
Cast
 
1970 Ardèle oder Das Gänseblümchen
Cast
 
1968 Haus Herzenstod
Cast
 
1967 Das Gold von Bayern
Cast
 
1966/1967 Der Werbeoffizier
Cast, Director
 
1966 Das Abgründige in Herrn Gerstenberg
Cast, Director, Screenplay, based on
 
1965 Die fromme Helene
Cast, Director, Screenplay
 
1965 Das Liebeskarussell. 4. Episode: Lolita
Cast, Director
 
1964 Heirate mich, Chéri
Director
 
1964 Das hab' ich von Papa gelernt
Cast, Director
 
1963/1964 Schattenspiel
Cast
 
1963 Frühstück im Doppelbett
Director
 
1963 Es war mir ein Vergnügen
Cast
 
1963 Ein Hut und ein Bart = ein Charakter
Cast, Director, Screenplay
 
1963 Harlekinade
Cast
 
1963 Die Kunst des Schlafens
Cast, Director, Screenplay
 
1962 Er kann's nicht lassen
Director
 
1962 Kohlhiesels Töchter
Director
 
1962 Der Mensch, ein Pudding aus elf Personen
Cast, Director, Screenplay
 
1961 Diesmal muß es Kaviar sein
Voice
 
1961 Es muß nicht immer Kaviar sein
Voice
 
1961 Eine hübscher als die andere
Director
 
1960 Gustav Adolfs Page
Cast
 
1960 Der brave Soldat Schwejk
Voice, Director
 
1960 Der Gauner und der liebe Gott
Director
 
1959 Die schöne Lügnerin
Director
 
1959 Der Herr Ornifle
Cast
 
1959 Bezaubernde Arabella
Cast, Director
 
1958/1959 Frau im besten Mannesalter
Director
 
1958 Der Pauker
Director
 
1958 Die Kunst der Klamotte
Cast, Director
 
1957 Die Freundin meines Mannes
Cast, Director
 
1956 Pygmalion
Cast
 
1956 Wie führe ich eine Ehe?
based on
 
1955 Ihr erstes Rendezvous
Director, Screenplay
 
1954 Bruder Martin
Cast, Director
 
1954 Columbus entdeckt Krähwinkel
Screenplay
 
1953/1954 Der schön gedeckte Tisch
Voice
 
1953 Glück muß man haben
Cast, Director, Screenplay
 
1952 Traumschöne Nacht
Dialogue
 
1952 Tanzende Sterne
Cast
 
1952 Der Mann in der Wanne
Cast
 
1952 Ich hab' mich so an Dich gewöhnt
Voice
 
1952 Früchte des Meeres
Miscellaneous
 
1952 Er pfeift darauf
Voice
 
1951/1952 Die Aalflut
Voice, Commentary
 
1951 Kommen Sie am Ersten...!
Voice
 
1951 Verträumtes Rendezvous
Miscellaneous
 
1950/1951 Verträumte Tage
Cast
 
1950 Drei Mädchen spinnen
Cast
 
1950 Modebummel
Voice
 
1949/1950 Sie sind nicht mehr
Participation
 
1949 Verspieltes Leben
Cast, Screenplay
 
1948 Der Augenzeuge [Jg. 1948 / Nr. 094]
Participation
 
1947/1948 Die seltsamen Abenteuer des Herrn Fridolin B.
Cast
 
1944/1952 Das Mädchen Juanita
Cast
 
1944/1950 Das Dementi
Cast
 
1944/1945 Der Mann, dem man den Namen stahl
Cast, Vocals
 
1942/1943 Die kluge Marianne
Cast
 
1942/1943 Karneval der Liebe
Cast
 
1942/1943 Frauen sind keine Engel
Cast
 
1941 Tanz mit dem Kaiser
Cast
 
1941 Annelie
Cast
 
1940 Traummusik
Cast
 
1939/1940 Das Herz der Königin
Cast
 
1939 Eine kleine Nachtmusik
Cast
 
1939 Die unheimlichen Wünsche
Cast
 
1938/1939 Salonwagen E 417
Cast
 
1938/1939 Ein hoffnungsloser Fall
Cast
 
1938 Kampf um Anastasia
Cast
 
1935 Der Gefangene des Königs
Cast
 

Overview

Literature

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