Skip to main content

Brandauer, Klaus Maria 1944-

BRANDAUER, Klaus Maria 1944-

PERSONAL: Born Klaus Maria Stenj, June 22, 1944, in Altaussee, Steiermark, Austria; son of Georg Stenj (a civil servant) and Maria Brandauer; married Karin Mueller (a film and television director and screenwriter), 1963; children: Christian. Education: Attended Stuttgart Academy of Music and Dramatic Arts.

ADDRESSES: Agent—International Creative Management, Oxford House, 76 Oxford St., London W1N OAX, England.

CAREER: Actor, director, and screenwriter. Actor in films, including (as Johann Kronsteiner) The Salzburg Connection (also known as Top Secret), Twentieth Century-Fox, 1972; Októberi vasárnap, 1979; Ein Sonntag im Oktober, 1979; (as Hendrik Hofgen) Mephisto, Analysis Films, 1981; (as Maximillian Largo) Never Say Never Again, Warner Bros., 1983; Detsky sad (also known as Detskij sad), 1983; (as Captain Miller) The Lightship (also known as Killers at Sea), Castle Hill, 1985; (as Alfred Redl) Oberst Redl (also known as Colonel Redl and Redl ezrede), Orion Classics, 1985; (as Bror Von Blixen-Finecke) Out of Africa, Universal, 1985; The Kindergarten, International Film Exchange, 1986; (as Alek Neuman) Streets of Gold, Universal, 1987; (as Klaus Schneider/Erik Jan Hanussen) Hanussen, 1987; (as the baron) Burning Secret, 1988; (as Benjamin Lenz) Das Spinnennetz (also known as Spider's Web), 1989; (as Elser) Georg Else—Einer aus Deutschland (also known as Georg Elser and Seven Minutes), 1989; (as Georges Danton) La Révolution française (also known as The French Revolution), 1989; (as Dante) The Russia House, 1990; (as Henri Gauthier-Villars) Becoming Colette (also known as Colette), 1991; (as Alex) White Fang, 1991; (as voice of Pascal/Claudandus) Felidae, 1994; (as Rembrandt) Rembrandt, Pyramide, 1999; Klaus Maria Brandauer: Speer in London (documentary), Pinter & Martin, Ltd., 1999; (as Orlov) Dykaren (also known as Baltic Sea, The Diver, and Salvation), 2000; (as Vladimir Lenin) Vera, nadezhda, krov' (also known as Belief, Hope, and Blood), 2000; (as Julius Caesar) Druids (also known as Vercingétorix, la legende du druide roi), 2001; (as Jan Jedermann) Jedermanns Fest (also known as Everyman's Feast), 2002; and (as Alexander) Between Strangers (also known as Cuori estranei), 2002; (as Gregor Lammle) Entrusted, 2003; and (voice of Dietrich Bonhoeffer) Bonhoeffer, 2003.

Actor in made-for-television movies, including Was Ihr wollt, 1973; (as Petruccio) Der Widerspenstigen Zahmung, 1974; (as Prinz Leonce) Leonce und Lena, 1975; Das Konzert, 1975; Kabale und Liebe, 1976; Darf ich metspielen?, 1976; Die Babenberger in Österreich, 1976; Jean-Christophe (miniseries), 1978; Die Bräute des Kurt Roidl, 1978; (as Georg ven Wergenthin) Der Weg ins Freie, 1983; Der Snob, 1984; (as Emperor Nero) Quo Vadis?, 1985; (as King Nebuchadnezzar) Jeremiah, PAX-TV, 1998; Speer, 1998; (as Otto Preminger) Introducing Dorothy Dandridge (also known as Face of an Angel), Home Box Office (HBO), 1999; (as Cyrano von Bergerac) Cyrano von Bergerac, 2000; Perlasca, un eroe italiano, 2002; and Das Jahrhundert des Theaters (miniseries), 2002.

Director of films, including Georg Elser—Einer aus Deutschland, 1989; Speer (made-for-television movie), 1998; and Die Wand, 1999. Recorded album Schoenberg: Gurrelieder, Metropolitan Opera Guild, 1996. Actor in stage productions, including (as Jedermann) Jedermann, Salzburg Festival, Salzburg, Austria; and (as Romeo) Romeo and Juliet, (as Petrucchio) The Taming of the Shrew, Don Carlos, and Tartuffe, all Burgtheatre, Vienna, Austria. Landesburg Theater, Tübingen, Germany, member of company, beginning 1963; Burgtheatre, Vienna, Austria, actor and director, 1972—.

AWARDS, HONORS: Best actor award, Cannes Film Festival, 1981, for Mephisto; Golden Globe Award, and New York Film Critics Award, both 1985, and Academy Award nomination for best supporting actor, 1986, all for Out of Africa.

WRITINGS:

(And director and actor) Mario und der Zauberer (screenplay; also known as Mario and the Magician), Henschel (Berlin, Germany), 1994.

SIDELIGHTS: Klaus Maria Brandauer has made a name for himself in the theatre and cinema of both his native Austria and of the United States. To American audiences, Brandauer may be best known for playing the villains opposite actor Sean Connery's British spies in the James Bond film Never Say Never Again and in The Russia House, based on the novel by British author John Le Carré. Brandauer also garnered a great deal of critical attention for his role as Meryl Streep's philandering husband in Out of Africa, which won him a Golden Globe award and an Academy Award nomination for best supporting actor. However, Brandauer's true love is stage acting. Even while he was filming Streets of Gold in the United States in 1986, he flew back to Austria every Friday, played Hamlet at the Burgtheatre in Vienna Saturday and Sunday, and then flew back to the United States to return to filming Monday morning.

Brandauer was born in Austria in 1944, while his father was fighting in the German army in World War II. His father was captured and sent to a Soviet prison camp, from which he did not return until Brandauer was five years old. The reunited family moved to West Germany in 1954, where Brandauer's father took a job as a civil servant, but Brandauer remained close to his mother's family in Austria. Even today, Brandauer maintains a home in Altaussee, the town of his birth, which he has described as "1,800 inhabitants, only two months of summer and 500 cows. That's it."

Brandauer was interested in acting from a young age, so his parents took him to the opera and bought him a season ticket to a local theater, which let him spend several nights a week there. When he graduated from high school he decided to study acting at the Academy of Music and Dramatic Arts in Stuttgart, West Germany, but this did not last long. When a director heard the freshman feeding lines to another student during a rehearsal of Shakespeare's Richard III, Brandauer was asked if he would like to turn professional. Brandauer, who didn't feel like he was learning a great deal from his classes and who by now had a wife and child to support, agreed. He acted at a theater in Tübingen for a time before moving to Austria's Burgtheater, the national theater of that country.

Brandauer's first attempt at Hollywood acting, the 1972 film The Salzburg Connection, was a flop, and he did not take part in another American film until 1983. However, in 1981 he became globally famous for his starring role in the Hungarian-German film Mephisto. This film, about a German actor (played by Brandauer) who renounces his left-wing politics in order to win the position of director in a German state theater under the Nazis, won an Academy Award and garnered a best actor award for Brandauer at the Cannes Film Festival. Mephisto became the first of a film trilogy about twentieth-century central European politics to be directed by Istvan Szabo. Brandauer also starred in the other two films, Colonel Redl and Hanussen. In the first Brandauer plays a homosexual officer in the Austrian army in 1914; in the second a wounded and shell-shocked World War I Austrian soldier who, while in therapy, discovers that his head wound has made him clairvoyant. Both of these films were also well received and solidified Brandauer's reputation as one of the best German-speaking actors of his generation.

In 1994 Brandauer attempted screenwriting and directing for the first time, with his film Mario und der Zauberer (Mario and the Magician). The movie is based on a short story of the same name by Thomas Mann, one of the early European critics of fascism. Like the original story, which was published in 1930, the film is set in 1920s Italy, but instead of dealing purely with the historical phenomenon of fascism, Brandauer uses this setting to examine the modern problems of racism and intolerance. Peter Claus, writing on Film Festival online, called Mario and the Magician "one of the most enjoyable, stylish and politically exciting German films of recent times."

BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:

BOOKS

Contemporary Newsmakers, Gale (Detroit, MI), 1988. Pickard, Roy, The Oscar Stars from A-Z, Headline Book Publishing (London, England), 1996.

PERIODICALS

America, February 1, 1986, Robert A. Blake, review of Out of Africa, p. 75.

American Film, August, 1991, Peter Rainer, review of The Russia House, p. 55.

California, May, 1982, Kenneth Turan, review of Mephisto, p. 140.

Chatelaine, December, 1983, review of Never Say Never Again, p. 8.

Christian Science Monitor, April 18, 1989, David Sterritt, review of Hanussen, p. 11.

Commonweal, January 31, 1986, Tom O'Brien, review of Out of Africa, pp. 53-54.

Cosmopolitan, December, 1983, Guy Flatley, review of Never Say Never Again, p. 24; January, 1991, Guy Flatley, review of The Russia House, p. 14.

Current Biography, July, 1990, "Klaus Maria Brandauer," pp. 6-10.

Daily News (Los Angeles, CA), "Stellar Lineup for Austria's Millennium Symphony," p. L14.

Daily Telegraph (Surry Hills, New South Wales, Australia), December 28, 2002, review of Never Say Never Again, p. 12.

Daily Variety, September 5, 2002, Deborah Young, review of Between Strangers, p. 21.

Desert Sun (Palm Springs, CA), January 18, 2003, review of Between Strangers, p. H3.

Economist (U.S. edition), March 2, 1985, review of Colonel Redl, pp. 89-90.

Entertainment Weekly, February 11, 2000, review of Introducing Dorothy Dandrigde, p. 78.

Film Comment, November-December, 1985, Stephen Harvey, review of Colonel Redl, p. 66, Elliott Stein, review of Colonel Redl, p. 70.

Film Quarterly, fall, 1986, David Paul, review of The Lightship, pp. 14-17.

Financial Times, March 11, 1999, Alastair Macaulay, "Brandauer Fails to Captivate with Speer's Ethical Dilemmas," p. 16.

Glamour, December, 1983, Joy Gould Boyum, review of Never Say Never Again, p. 60.

Independent (London, England), February 27, 1999, "Heart of Darkness: Klaus Maria Brandauer Is in London to Play the Architect Albert Speer. And It's Not the Actor's First Brush with the Nazi Era. What's the Attraction?," p. 12; February 21, 2000, Adrian Mourby, "Vienna: Why a Boycott Won't Work," p. 14.

International Herald Tribune, March 17, 1999, Sheridan Morley, review of Speer, p. 10.

Interview, June, 1986, Mark Matousek, "Klaus Maria Brandauer," pp. 66-67.

Knight Ridder/Tribune News Service, June 26, 2001, Terry Lawson, "'Mephisto' Retains Its Diabolical Power," p. K2717.

Library Journal, July, 1989, Randy Pitman, review of Burning Secret, pp. 121-122; September 1, 1990, Randy Pitman, review of Hanussen, pp. 274-275.

Los Angeles Magazine, November, 1983, Merrill Shindler, review of Never Say Never Again, pp. 47-48.

Los Angeles Times, October 7, 1983, Shiela Benson, review of Never Say Never Again, p. 1; October 10, 1985, Michael Wilmington, review of Colonel Redl, p. 7; September 15, 1996, Sheila Benson, review of Hanussen, p. 5.

Maclean's, October 28, 1985, Lawrence O'Toole, review of Colonel Redl, p. 69; December 23, 1985, Lawrence O'Toole, review of Out of Africa, p. 48.

Mirror (London, England), December 17, 2002, review of Never Say Never Again, p. 1.

Ms., March, 1986, Molly Haskell, review of Out of Africa, pp. 13-14.

Nation, April 3, 1982, Robert Hatch, review of Mephisto, pp. 411-412.

National Review, June 25, 1982, John Simon, review of Mephisto, pp. 778-779; February 14, 1986, John Simon, review of The Color Purple, pp. 56-59.

New Leader, October 17, 1983, Robert Asahina, review of Never Say Never Again, p. 19; February 10, 1986, Daphne Merkin, review of Out of Africa, pp. 19-20.

New Republic, April 7, 1982, Stanley Kauffmann, review of Mephisto, pp. 24-26; January 20, 1986, Stanley Kauffmann, review of Out of Africa, pp. 26-27; April 10, 1989, Stanley Kauffmann, review of Haunssen, pp. 22-23; November 30, 1992, Stanley Kauffman, review of Becoming Colette, p. 27.

New Statesman, November 15, 1985, John Coleman, review of Colonel Redl, pp. 33-34; March 7, 1986, John Coleman, review of Out of Africa, p. 29.

Newsweek, April 12, 1982, David Ansen, review of Mephisto, p. 87; December 23, 1985, David Ansen, review of Out of Africa, pp. 72-74; March 19, 1999, David Jays, review of Speer, pp. 37-38.

New York, April 12, 1982, David Denby, review of Mephisto, p. 61; November 7, 1983, David Denby, review of Never Say Never Again, pp. 100-101; September 16, 1985, David Denby, review of Out of Africa, pp. 42-43; October 14, 1985, David Denby, review of Colonel Redl, p. 84; January 6, 1986, David Denby, review of Out of Africa, pp. 57-58; August 23, 1999, John Leonard, review of Introducing Dorothy Dandridge, pp. 58-59.

New Yorker, May 17, 1982, Pauline Kael, review of Mephisto, pp. 128-132; December 30, 1985, Pauline Kael, review of Out of Africa, pp. 67-68; December 31, 1990, Terrence Rafferty, review of The Russia House, pp. 84-86.

New York Times, September 29, 1981, Janet Maslin, review of Mephisto, p. 20; March 21, 1982, Lawrence Van Gelder, review of Mephisto, p. D17; March 22, 1982, review of Mephisto, p. 21; October 2, 1985, Vincent Canby, review of Colonel Redl, p. 26; October 13, 1985, Richard Grenier, review of Colonel Redl, p. H13; December 18, 1985, Vincent Canby, review of Out of Africa, p. 24; February 12, 1986, Walter Goodman, review of Kindergarten, p. 28; September 26, 1986, Vincent Canby, review of The Lightship, p. 24; November 14, 1986, Vincent Canby, review of Streets of Gold, p. 19; October 18, 1987, Myra Forsberg, review of Colonel Redl, p. H36; December 23, 1988, Vincent Canby, review of Burning Secret, p. B7; March 11, 1989, Vincent Canby, review of Hanussen, p. 12; May 21, 1989, review of Burning Secret, p. H28; August 12, 1990, Vincent Canby, review of Hanussen, p. H26; January 18, 1991, Janet Maslin, review of White Fang, p. B6.

Observer (London, England), February 28, 1999, Vanessa Thorpe, profile of Brandauer, p. 25.

Opera News, October, 1996, C. J. Luten, review of Schoenberg: Gurrelieder, pp. 38-39.

People, June 14, 1982, review of Mephisto, pp. 22-23; February 24, 1986, Jim Jerome, "Sprechen Sie Oscar? Austria's Klaus Maria Brandauer Comes out of the Cold with Out of Africa," pp. 52-54; January 16, 1989, Peter Travers, review of Burning Secret, p. 19; December 24, 1990, Ralph Novak, review of The Russia House, pp. 13-14; August 16, 1999, Ellin Stein, review of Introducing Dorothy Dandridge, p. 25.

Philadelphia Magazine, June, 1982, Richard Fuller, review of Mephisto, p. 57.

San Francisco, July, 1982, Jon Carroll, review of Mephisto, pp. 27-28; December, 1983, Stephanie von Buchau, review of Never Say Never Again, p. 27.

San Francisco Chronicle, June, 1982, Jon Carroll, review of Mephisto, pp. 45-46.

Saturday Evening Post, April, 1986, John Podhertz, review of Out of Africa, pp. 66-67.

Saturday Review, March-April, 1983, Judith Crist, review of Mephisto, p. 51.

Seventeen, July, 1982, Edwin Miller, review of Mephisto, p. 63; December, 1983, Edwin Miller, review of Never Say Never Again, p. 81.

Spectator, March 20, 1999, Sheridan Morley, review of Speer, p. 80.

Sunday Herald (Glasgow, Scotland), October 24, 1999, review of Mephisto, p. 45.

Sunday Times (London, England), February 16, 2003, review of Out of Africa, p. 31.

Time, May 3, 1982, Richard Schickel, review of Mephisto, p. 73; October 17, 1983, Richard Schickel, review of Never Say Never Again, p. 89; February 6, 1984, Richard Zoglin, review of Kindergarten, p. 62; December 16, 1985, Richard Schickel, review of Out of Africa, p. 82.

Times (London, England), January 11, 1999, Benedict Nightingale, "Theatre: Spring Preview," p. 18; August 17, 2002, review of Face of an Angel, p. 6.

USA Today (magazine), March, 1986, Kenneth R. Hey, review of Out of Africa, p. 93.

Variety, March 18, 1981, review of Mephisto, p. 186; May 2, 1984, Thomas Quinn Curtiss, "'Quo Vadis' Redo Begins Rolling; $12-Mil Budget, Deals Aplenty," p. 43; February 20, 1985, review of Oberst Redl, p. 22; September 11, 1985, review of The Lightship, p. 15; December 11, 1985, review of Out of Africa, p. 17; November 12, 1986, review of Streets of Gold, p. 14; December 17, 1990, review of The Russia House, pp. 42-43; August 3, 1992, Joe Leydon, review of Becoming Colette, pp. 40-41; August 16, 1999, Laura Fries, review of Introducing Dorothy Dandridge, p. 27; October 18, 1999, Lisa Nesselson, review of Rembrandt, p. 37; May 13, 2002, Ken Eisner, review of Jedermann's Fest, p. 30.

Video Magazine, August, 1991, Marianne Meyer, review of White Fang, p. 44.

Video Review, July, 1989, Neal Gabler, review of Burning Secret, p. 63; July, 1990, Roy Hemming, review of Mephisto, p. 45; October, 1990, Andrew Sarris, review of Hanussen, p. 100; August, 1991, Andrew Sarris, review of The Russia House, p. 68.

Vogue, May, 1984, Stephen M. Silverman, "Hungarian Confidential," pp. 78-79.

Wall Street Journal, March 26, 1982, Joy Gould Boyum, review of Mephisto, p. 27; December 26, 1985, Julie Salamon, review of Out of Africa, pp. 5-6; November 20, 1986, Julie Salamon, review of Streets of Gold, pp. 24, 32.

Washingtontian, November, 1983, Pat Dowell, review of Never Say Never Again, p. 60; December, 1983, Pat Dowell, review of Never Say Never Again, pp. 56-57; November, 1985, Pat Dowell, review of Colonel Redl, p. 92.

World Press Review, May, 1989, Joachim Reidl, "King of the Mountain", p. 61.

ONLINE

Agentur Iris Müeller,http://www.agenturirismueller.com/ (February 26, 2003), "Klaus Maria Brandauer."

FilmFestivals.com,http://www.filmfestivals.com/ (February 26, 2003), review of Mario und der Zauberer.

MSN Entertainment,http://entertainment.msn.com/ (February 26, 2003), review of Mario und der Zauberer; profile of Brandauer.*

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Brandauer, Klaus Maria 1944-." Contemporary Authors. . Encyclopedia.com. 19 Nov. 2018 <https://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"Brandauer, Klaus Maria 1944-." Contemporary Authors. . Encyclopedia.com. (November 19, 2018). https://www.encyclopedia.com/arts/educational-magazines/brandauer-klaus-maria-1944

"Brandauer, Klaus Maria 1944-." Contemporary Authors. . Retrieved November 19, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: https://www.encyclopedia.com/arts/educational-magazines/brandauer-klaus-maria-1944

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.