Making the transition from television to film can be an insurmountable task for some. Actress Heike Makatsch started her career in entertainment hosting shows on a music television channel. Today, she is a popular leading actress in not only German-language films but also English-language films. Perhaps you have seen her in Love Actually or Resident Evil.
Get to know Heike Makatsch’s extensive German films and practice German with this month’s German films feature!
Get to Know Heike Makatsch
Heike Makatsch was born in Düsseldorf on August 13, 1971. Her mother was a grade school teacher and her father was an ice hockey goalkeeper who played in the Olympics for Germany.
After receiving her Abitur, she studied politics and sociology at the University of Düsseldorf and took an apprenticeship as a tailor.
By the early 1990s, Makatsch got a job hosting several shows on the music television channel VIVA. Within a few years, she had her own weekly late-night show. Unfortunately, the show was canceled after only eight episodes. But by then, Makatsch had begun acting.
In the film, a prison warden decides to give prisoners a temporary break in their sentence if they can find a responsible woman to care for them. Two such prisoners, Steinbock (portrayed by Til Schweiger) and Hammer-Gerd (Buck), decide to take the warden up on his offer, even if they find answering to a woman challenging. But the tables turn when Steinbock falls in love with his custodian and Hammer-Gerd becomes the manager of his custodian, a singer (portrayed by Makatsch). But the break from prison is only temporary.
The film was Makatsch’s first film role and won her a Bavarian Film Award for best young talent. It also features her performing Tammy Wynette’s “Stand By Your Man.”
Ich war noch niemals in New York
In 2007, the musical Ich war noch niemals in New York celebrated its premiere in Hamburg. The production centers around the songs of Udo Jürgens. (Although younger fans may be more familiar with the Sportfreunde Stiller version of the song from which the production borrows its name.)
More than a decade later, director Philipp Stölzl brought the stage production to the big screen with a film adaptation.
In the film, Matkatsch stars as Lisa, a career-oriented television presenter. When her mother, Maria, suffers an injury and loses her memory the only thing she is able to recall is that she hasn’t been to New York. Maria decides to right that wrong, escapes the hospital, and boards a cruise ship. But when Lisa goes to retrieve her mother, the ship sets sail before the pair can get back off.
On board the ship, the two get to know the other passengers, including Axel (portrayed by Moritz Bleibtreu).
Gott, du kannst ein Arsch sein!
In the film adaptation of Frank Pape’s novel Gott, du kannst ein Arsch sein!, 16-year-old Steffi is about to graduate from Realschule. The teenager has many exciting things to look forward to, including a class trip to Paris and spending time with her boyfriend.
But things take a dramatic turn when Steffi is diagnosed with terminal cancer. Shocked by the diagnosis, Steffi’s parents — portrayed by Heike Makatsch and Til Schweiger — decide it would be best if she does not travel to Paris. Instead of spending the remaining time in a hospital, Steffi defies her parents and runs away. Steffi’s parents hit the road to track down their daughter.
Practice practice practice! Discover other great German language actors and actresses previously featured.
Top photo by Linda Rosa Saal courtesy of Wasted Management. This post contains affiliate links.