Paul May

Paul May

Regie, Regie-Assistenz, Drehbuch, Schnitt, Produzent, Aufnahmeleitung
*08.05.1909 München; †25.02.1976 Taufkirchen (bei München)

Biography

Paul May was born on May 8, 1909, under the name Paul Ostermayr in Munich. He was bound to start a career in the film business: His uncle Franz Osten worked as a director and his father, Peter Ostermayr, also became known as a director but mainly as the founder of Emelka-Filmgesellschaft (that later became Bavaria-Filmgesellschaft) and as the constructor of the first film studios in the Munich suburb Geiselgasteig.

After graduating from high school in Feldkirch, Paul May attended an extensive apprenticeship in several branches of the photography and film business – he attended Staatslehranstalt für Lichtbildwesen, worked at Ufa’s experimental laboratories, and received practical training for individual production steps at printing laboratories and in film ateliers.

From 1930 on, he participated as a cutter in the production of several films and worked with directors like Hans Deppe, Max Ophüls, and Harry Piel. From 1933 on, he also worked as an assistant director, again often for Hans Deppe with whom he adapted several novels by the writer Ludwig Ganghofer for the movie screen as Peter Ostermayr held the exclusive rights of Ganghofer’s works. For Peter Ostermayr’s production company Tonlicht-Film GmbH, Paul May also realized "Der Edelweißkönig" (King of the Edelweiss"), his first project as a director, in 1938.

May’s early career stages as a director were mainly influenced by his father’s stock of sentimental film projects: He, for instance, finished "Waldrausch" ("Forest Fever", 1939) and "Links der Isar – rechts der Spree" (1940) during this period. With "Violanta" (1942), a film version of Erich Zahn’s novella "Der Schatten", he started to loosen his family ties. From then on, he worked under his stage name, for different film production companies, and in different genres. He, for instance, finished the crime film "Die Nacht der Zwölf" (1948), and, together with G. W. Pabst, the post-war film "Duell mit dem Tod" (1949). However, his production company Orbis-Filmproduktion did not turn out as a success. Between 1949 and 1953, the company finished only one film, "König für eine Nacht" (1950).

Paul May made his most famous feature films in the period between 1950 and 1963, for instance, the anti-war film "08/15" (1954), one of the most commercially successful films of 1950s West German cinema that even resulted in two sequels in 1955, "08/15 – II. Teil" ("08/15 Part 2") and "08/15 in der Heimat" ("08/15 at Home"). The sentimental film dramas "Und ewig singen die Wälder" ("Duel with Death", 1959) sowie "Via Mala" (1961) also became huge box office hits. During this creative period, May finished more than 20 films. From 1964 on, he almost completely turned away from the movie screen and – with the exception of "Mittsommernacht" (1967) – turned to directing TV movies, including the three-part film version of Francis Durbridge’s "Melissa" (1965).

In the early 1970s, Paul May withdrew from the film business. He died on February 25, 1976, in Taufkirchen near Munich.

Filmography

1972/1973 Zwei gegen alle
Director
 
1972 Nicht Lob - noch Furcht. Graf Galen, Bischof von Münster
Director
 
1971 Die Schrott-Story
Director
 
1969 Nennen Sie mich Alex
Director
 
1968 Das Beryll-Diadem
Director
 
1967/1968 Das Haus bei den Blutbuchen
Director
 
1967 Die Bruce-Partington-Pläne
Director
 
1967 Die Liga der Rothaarigen
Director
 
1967 Sechsmal Napoleon
Director
 
1967 Das gefleckte Band
Director
 
1967 In Sachen Erzberger gegen Helfferich
Director
 
1967 Mittsommernacht
Director
 
1965/1966 Melissa
Director
 
1965 Acht Stunden Zeit
Director
 
1965 Glück in Frankreich
Director
 
1964 Die Schlüssel
Director
 
1964 Die Truhe
Director
 
1963 Scotland Yard jagt Dr. Mabuse
Director
 
1962/1963 Barras heute
Director
 
1962 Waldrausch
Director
 
1961 Freddy und der Millionär
Director
 
1961 Via Mala
Director, Screenplay
 
1960 Soldatensender Calais
Director
 
1960 Der Schleier fiel...
Director
 
1959 Heimat - Deine Lieder
Director
 
1959 Und ewig singen die Wälder
Director
 
1958/1959 Heiße Ware
Director
 
1958 Die Landärztin
Director
 
1957 Der Fuchs von Paris
Director
 
1957 Weißer Holunder
Director
 
1956/1957 Flucht in die Tropennacht
Director
 
1956 Weil du arm bist, mußt du früher sterben
Director
 
1955 08/15 in der Heimat
Director
 
1955 08/15 - II. Teil
Director
 
1954/1955 Oberarzt Dr. Solm
Director, Producer
 
1954 Phantom des großen Zeltes
Director
 
1954 08/15
Director, Co-author
 
1953 Junges Herz voll Liebe
Director
 
1952 Zwei Menschen
Director, Screenplay
 
1950 König für eine Nacht
Director, Producer
 
1949 Duell mit dem Tod
Director, Screenplay
 
1944/1948 Die Nacht der Zwölf
Screenplay
 
1942/1943 Die unheimliche Wandlung des Alex Roscher
Director
 
1941/1942 Violanta
Director, Screenplay
 
1940 Links der Isar - rechts der Spree
Director
 
1939/1940 Beates Flitterwoche
Director
 
1939 Waldrausch
Director
 
1939 Die kluge Schwiegermutter
Editing, Production assistant
 
1938 Frau Sixta
Dialogue editor, Editing
 
1938 Dreiklang
Editing
 
1938 Der Edelweißkönig
Director, Editing
 
1937 Zweimal zwei im Himmelbett
Creative supervisor, Assistant director, Editing
 
1937 Gewitter im Mai
Assistant director, Editing
 
1937 Das Schweigen im Walde
Director
 
1936/1937 Sein bester Freund
Editing
 
1936/1937 Das schöne Fräulein Schragg
Assistant director, Editing
 
1936 Standschütze Bruggler
Assistant director, Editing
 
1936 Der Jäger von Fall
Assistant director, Editing
 
1935 Anschlag auf Schweda
Assistant director, Editing
 
1935 Die Heilige und ihr Narr
Assistant director, Editing
 
1934/1935 Wunder des Fliegens
Editing
 
1934 Die vier Musketiere
Editing
 
1934 Ferien vom Ich
Assistant director, Editing
 
1934 Schloß Hubertus
Assistant director, Editing
 
1933/1934 The Legend of William Tell
Editing
 
1933 Wenn am Sonntagabend die Dorfmusik spielt
Assistant director, Editing
 
1933 Die Nacht im Forsthaus
Editing
 
1932/1933 Gipfelstürmer
Editing
 
1932 Geheimnis des blauen Zimmers
Editing
 
1932 Der Orlow
Editing
 
1932 Der Schützenkönig
Editing
 
1932 Die verkaufte Braut
Editing
 
1932 Fürst Seppl
Editing
 
1931/1932 Wenn dem Esel zu wohl ist ... (Er und sein Tippfräulein)
Editing
 
1931 Panik in Chicago
Editing
 
1931 Der Storch streikt. Siegfried der Matrose
Editing
 
1931 Die Mutter der Kompagnie
Editing
 
1931 Die spanische Fliege
Editing
 
1931 Kadetten
Editing
 
1930/1931 Der Tanzhusar
Editing
 
1930 Tingel-Tangel
Editing
 

Overview

Literature

KOBV-Suche