Thomas Medicus

HEINRICH AND GÖTZ GEORGE – TWO LIVES

Rarely was a father/son relationship as close and as complex as this one, although their lifetimes barely overlapped. Heinrich George reigned as Berlin’s god of the theatre from the 1920s, played under Brecht and starred in Metropolis. During the Third Reich, he took his career to new heights, allowing himself to be roped in for propaganda; he died in the Soviet camp Sachsenhausen in 1946. His son, Götz, was eight at the time, but the figure of his father accompanied him throughout his lifetime – the contradictory artist whom he followed in his own way.

Götz George played in Karl May films, then in “Schtonk!” and “Rossini”, which reflected the state of the German Republic, and shone in character roles such as “Der Totmacher”. As “Schimanski” he became Germany’s favourite television inspector and prototype of the “new man” who was allowed to show weakness. Thomas Medicus has written a remarkable, moving father/son story – and at the same time the double biography of two formative artists of the 20th century.

Thomas Medicus

Thomas Medicus

Thomas Medicus, born in 1953, wrote for the FAZ, among others, and was deputy editor of the culture and entertainment section of the Frankfurter Rundschau. Today he works as a freelance publicist in Berlin. In 2012 he wrote the much-praised biography Melitta von Stauffenberg. Neue Zürcher Zeitung described his novel Heimat as "unconventional and gripping … a multi-layered contemporary historical narrative."

 

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