Rainer Werner Fassbinder

Film director

1945 – 1982


Who was Rainer Werner Fassbinder?

Rainer Werner Fassbinder was a German film director, screenwriter, and actor. He is one of the most important figures in the New German Cinema.

Fassbinder maintained a frenetic pace in filmmaking. In a professional career that lasted fewer than fifteen years, he completed 40 feature length films; two television film series; three short films; four video productions; twenty-four stage plays and four radio plays; and 36 acting roles in his own and others’ films. He also worked as an actor, author, cameraman, composer, designer, editor, producer and theater manager.

Underlying Fassbinder's work was a desire to provoke and disturb. His phenomenal creative energy, when working, coexisted with a wild, self-destructive libertinism that earned him a reputation as the enfant terrible of the New German Cinema, as well as being its central figure. He had tortured personal relationships with the actors and technicians around him who formed a surrogate family. However, his pictures demonstrate his deep sensitivity to social outsiders and his hatred of institutionalized violence. He ruthlessly attacked both German bourgeois society and the larger limitations of humanity.

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May 31, 1945
Bad Wörishofen
Also known as
  • Franz Walsch
  • Rainer W. Fassbinder
  • Franz Walsh
  • Franz Alsch
  • R.W. Fassbinder
  • R.W.F.
  • Germany
Lived in
  • Bavaria
Jun 10, 1982

on July 23, 2013


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