1893 - 1943
Veidts first works for theater go back to the year 1913, first appearances in movies go back to the year 1916. As he had something strange in his features he was called on for unusual parts. He personified among other things an Indian prince in "Das Rätsel von Bangalor (1917) and also an Indian in "Das indische Grabmal" (1921).
In 1918 he met director Richard Oswald (1880-1963). From this connection resulted more than 20 films in the next few years, e.g. "Anders als die Anderen" (1919) about homosexuality and "Dürfen wir schweigen?" (1926) about syphilis.
Time and again he was employed for dubious parts. The most well-known
films are definitely "Satanas" (1919), "Der Januskopf" (1920) and "Der
Gang in die Nacht" (1920). His absolute most popular movie and with it
his most impressive part he had in "Das Kabinett des Dr. Caligari" (1919),
which went down in history as one of the great cult movies in the German
silent movie era. Veidt personified in this film the somnambulist Cesare.
In "Das Wachsfigurenkabinett" (1923) were the most important movie stars assembled beside Veidt in those time: Emil Jannings (1884-1950), Werner Krauss (1884-1959) and Wilhelm Dieterle (1893-1972). This movie from director Paul Leni (1885-1929) was the last one on the style of Caligari.
The part in the remake of "Der Student von Prag" (1926) represented
a huge challenge for Conrad Veidt. He did this job brilliantly and he hadn't
been afraid of a comparison with Paul Wegener in 1913.
The beginning of the sound film wasn't a problem for him. He shot "Die letzte Kompanie" (1929), "Menschen im Käfig" (1930) and "Der Kongress tanzt" (1931).
Veidt orientated himself to the English-speaking region - he played the part of Hans Ablers in the English version of "F.P.1 antwortet nicht" (1932) and in1933 he acted his last role in Germany before went to England for good. When he appeared there in the movie "Jew Süss" (1934) (not to confuse with the German film of 1940 of the same name), the negative voices of the socialistic Germany increased:
"Conrad Veidt was payed for this betrayal of his native country - by the praise of the Jewish public. Whit it he is human no longer dignified that not even one finger in Germany moves to his praise." (Völkischer Beobachter 1934).
Veidt was active in England in the course of five years when he obtained
the English citizenship. During this time was strong involved against Nazi-Germany.
His last movie in England was "The Thief of Baghdad" (with Sabu in the
leading role) and celebrated a further worldwide success. In 1940 he moved
to the USA where he hoped for better film offers. He played together with
Joan Crawford in "A woman's face" (1941) and took part in cult movie "Casablanca"
(1943), which convened a multitude of emigrated stars of Europe. It was
not granted to Conrad Veidt to witness the great success of Casablance.
He died on the 3rd April 1943 - during a game of golf - because of a heart
Other movies with Conrad Veidt: