Biography of Marlene Dietrich (1901-1992)

Marlene Dietrich and Gary Cooper in Morocco.

German-born American film actress, born on 27 December 1901 in Schöneberg (Berlin) and died in Paris on May 6, 1992. His real name was María Magdalene Dietrich.

Daughter of a police officer and a Lady of good wedge, from very small received a very severe training who looked after both his manners and education as their way of dressing. This training and their musical skills was introduced in the film world as a member of orchestras that accompanied to the screenings of silent films. With just 19 years (at this time already appeared as Marlene, name that emerged will merge their two names: Sea [ia] and [Magda] lene) was rejected by the theatre director Max Reinhard when he tried to enter the Deutsche Theaterschule, although two years later would get it, and a time alternated their classes with brief appearances in other shows and some movies directed by Georg Jacoby (men are like this1922) or William Dieterle (a man on the edge of the road, 1923), among others.

Married Rudolf Sieber in 1924, after meeting in the filming of tragedy of love, Joe May. It began to be reclaimed for different roles by directors as George w. Pabst (under the mask of pleasure, 1925), Alexander Korda (the modern Du Barry, 1926) and Gustav Ucicky (when women lose their way, 1927).

Without a doubt, the most important moment of his career took place when Joseph von Sternberg called it to interpret the role of Lola-Lola in the blue angel (1930), one of the most important films of both and the history of cinema; a story about human decadence in which Marlene/Lola shows a passion lit for all those who are moved to your around. The success and popularity reached after the premiere of the film led her to Hollywood, where the Paramount hired her to intervene in Morocco (1930) by Gary Cooper, the Heartthrob of the study. They were directed by Sternberg, who took it to his orders in five other films, covering one of the most interesting stages of their careers and making it, also one of the actresses over the blockbuster of the Decade of the thirties. If in each of their new works Sternberg knew discover its actress some different details, the public hunted it always delighted by his dazzling presence and its magical expression, surprising with characters such as Shanghai Lily in Shanghai (1932) Express. They were a few years of growing popularity that ended with the artistic director and actress separation.

After this creative Idyll, Marlene started a new stage where he worked with directors like Frank Borzage (desire, 1936), Richard Boleslawski (garden wing, 1936; work that took one of the wages far higher) and Ernst Lubitsch (Angel, 1937). Throughout the 1940s he worked in all kinds of productions, especially in westerns such as Arizona (1939), George Marshall, or the usurpers (1942), of Ray Enright, along with James Stewart and John Wayne.

Before the second world war he obtained U.S. citizenship, gesture which caused him to actively participate in the sale of bonds and become part of the delegations of artists who moved to the front during the war. Throughout the 1950s, his film appearances were more sporadic; just highlights his work in panic scene (1950), Alfred Hitchcock, and cover-up (1952), by Fritz Lang, one of its most special western.

His subsequent appearances left the bittersweet impression of who knew how to give all his best in roles where the beauty, already faded by the passage of time, conveys a certain nostalgia for better times. This is how recalls his work, always effective, in witness for the prosecution (1957), from Billy Wilder; Evil thirst (1958), by Orson Welles; and victors or vanquished? (1961), by Stanley Kramer.

In the early 1960s, he decided to leave virtually the world of cinema, devoted with intensity to the music, performing live and recording many albums both in Europe and United States.

Marlene Dietrich became one of the myths of the film, and as such was revered by many spectators who flocked to watch all your movies; but it was also criticized by another sector that categorically expressed their indignation to the provocation that his presence was causing those classrooms from around the world attending. Without a doubt, Marlene was an actress with the wide variety of expressive records that so great with their songs and dance performances and that placed it in a place of cinematic Olympus, by its fascinating personality (landslide in many moments of his life), became the fatal woman captivating and enigmatic, beyond represent in their rolesinterpreted during his own lifetime. Her beautiful legs and hoarse voice have been as icons (Visual and audible) representative of a trajectory that moved on the fringes of a doomed romanticism, inevitably, to the fatality. In the history of cinema, and on many other characters, Marlene was always Lola-Lola.

Many publications that have been carried out after his death, among which became thirteen years later, in November 2005, for the only daughter of the actress, María Riva, who published a book of poems performed by actress during the long nights of insomnia of his later years in which a revision done by the long list of her former loversamong which are famous in the world of entertainment, literature and politics, like Ernest Hemingway, Mercedes de Acosta, Yul Brynnerand Ronald Reagan, and to which dedicated lit passages of love.


1919: Im Schatten des Glücks. 1922: The little Napoleon. 1923: A man on the edge of the road; Tragedy of love; Jump to life. 1924: Der Mönch von Santarén. 1925: Under the mask of pleasure. 1926: Mannon Lescaut; Above his head, Charlie!; The imaginary baron. 1927: The modern Du Barry; When a woman loses her way; The other self. 1928: The Countess Mimi. 1929: The followers of the Lady; Men without law; Night of love; Passion flower. 1930: The blue angel; Morocco. 1931: Fatality. 1932: The Shanghai express; The blonde venus. 1933: The song of songs. 1934: Imperial whim. 1935: The devil is a woman. 1936: I wish; The garden of Allah. I Loved a Soldier. 1937: The Countess Alexandra; Angel. 1937: Arizona. 1940: Seven sinners. 1941: flame of New Orleans; Manpower. 1942: Capricho de mujer; The usurpers; Forging of hearts. 1943: Show Business at War. 1944: Dreams of glory; Beggar Prince. 1946: The beautiful foreign. 1947: In 1948 hand stripes: Berlin West. 1949: Jigsaw. 1950: Panic at the scene. 1951: Moments of danger. 1952: Cover-up. 1956: Around the world in eighty days; Big world in Monte Carlo. 1957: Witness for the prosecution. 1958: Thirst for evil. 1961: Winners or losers? 1964: meeting in Paris. 1979: Gigolo.


CAHILL, M. Marlene Dietrich. Wigston, Magna, 1992.

DIETRICH, Marlene. Marlene Dietrich. Barcelona, overseas, 1985.

SPOTO, Donald. Marlene Dietrich. Barcelona, Ediciones B, 1994.