Cast
Langendreer-Bochum Berlin (Ost)

Biography

Friedrich Gnaß, born November 13, 1892, in Langendreer (now Bochum) at first attended an apprenticeship as a machine fitter and subsequently worked in different jobs, for instance, as a sailor, as a fitter, and as a crane operator. Gnaß became an actor at a rather late age: In 1923, at the age of 31, he started to attend actor’s training in Hamburg. Two years later, he made his stage debut at Hamburg’s Kammerspiele. In 1926, Gnaß went to Berlin where he performed at Volksbühne and at Theater am Schiffbauerdamm.

In 1929, Gnaß made his movie debut in the social drama "Jenseits der Straße – Eine Tragödie des Alltags". During the following years, the actor with the distinctively rugged face and the remarkably hoarse voice was seen in supporting roles in several films that today are considered classic films and masterpieces of film history. Gnaß, for instance, played the construction worker Max in Phil Jutzi’s film "Mutter Krausens fährt ins Glück" ("Mother Krausen Goes To Heaven", 1930) or starred as burglar in Fritz Lang’s "M" ("M – A Town is Looking For A Murderer", 1931). During the shooting of "Mutter Krausens Fahrt ins Glück", he also met his later life partner Ilse Trautschold.

 

After the Nazis ascended to power in 1933, Gnaß also played in propaganda films like "Flüchtlinge" ("Refugees", 1933) or "Legion Condor" (1939) – although he was temporarily banned from Reichsfachschaft Film and imprisoned because of his leftist political positions in 1936.

After the end of the Nazi regime, Gnaß worked as a theatre actor in Berlin. He then became a cast member of Bertolt Brecht’s Berliner Ensemble, a position he held until his death.

Furthermore, Gnaß starred in striking supporting roles in a series of top-class DEFA films, including Kurt Maetzig’s film "Die Buntkarierten" (1949), Wolfgang Staudte’s film "Der Untertan" ("The Kaiser’s Lackey", 1951), Konrad Wolf’s film "Einmal ist keinmal" (1955), or Joachim Hasler’s film "Gejagt wird bis zum Morgengrauen" (1957).

On May 8, 1958, Friedrich Gnaß died in East Berlin.

FILMOGRAFIE

1957/1958
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1957
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1956/1957
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1955/1956
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1955-1957
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1954/1955
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1954
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1952/1953
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1951
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1948/1949
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1948/1949
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1948
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1947
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1938/1939
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1938
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1938
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1938
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1937/1938
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1935
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1933
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1932/1933
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1931/1932
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1931
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1930/1931
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1930
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