Werner Dissel
Werner Friedrich Dissel was a German
The Germans are a Germanic ethnic group native to Central Europe. The English term Germans has referred to the German-speaking population of the Holy Roman Empire since the Late Middle Ages....

 actor and director.


Dissel's began working as a newspaper photographer in the late 1920s. After the Nazis' rise to power
Machtergreifung is a German word meaning "seizure of power". It is normally used specifically to refer to the Nazi takeover of power in the democratic Weimar Republic on 30 January 1933, the day Hitler was sworn in as Chancellor of Germany, turning it into the Nazi German dictatorship.-Term:The...

, he became a member of an antifascist group headed by Harro Schulze-Boysen
Harro Schulze-Boysen
Heinz Harro Max Wilhelm Georg Schulze-Boysen was a German officer, commentator, and German Resistance fighter against German dictator Adolf Hitler's Nazi régime.- Early life :...

, and was involved in the resistance newspaper Wille zum Reich. Dissel was caught and imprisoned from 1937 to 1939. During his time in prison, the Gestapo
The Gestapo was the official secret police of Nazi Germany. Beginning on 20 April 1934, it was under the administration of the SS leader Heinrich Himmler in his position as Chief of German Police...

 arranged for Boysen to visit him, in the hope that something incriminating would be said while the two would be left alone in a tapped room; Boysen passed a cigarette pack to Dissel, on which he wrote that the police had no concrete evidence against him. After his release, Boysen convinced him to volunteer into the Wehrmacht
The Wehrmacht – from , to defend and , the might/power) were the unified armed forces of Nazi Germany from 1935 to 1945. It consisted of the Heer , the Kriegsmarine and the Luftwaffe .-Origin and use of the term:...

, so he could "destroy Hitler's army from within". Dissel joined the armed forces shortly before the German Invasion of Poland, and served in a military meteorology unit. At 1942, he barely avoided an arrest during the Gestapo's crackdown on the Red Orchestra.

After the war, he openly joined the KPD
Communist Party of Germany
The Communist Party of Germany was a major political party in Germany between 1918 and 1933, and a minor party in West Germany in the postwar period until it was banned in 1956...

 and decided to pursue his old dream to become an actor. Dissel joined a cabaret in Wiesbaden
Wiesbaden is a city in southwest Germany and the capital of the federal state of Hesse. It has about 275,400 inhabitants, plus approximately 10,000 United States citizens...

, and in 1950 emigrated to East Germany. There he appeared in numerous plays, TV shows and movies. He worked with the Berliner Ensemble
Berliner Ensemble
The Berliner Ensemble is a German theatre company established by playwright Bertolt Brecht and his wife, Helene Weigel in January 1949 in East Berlin...

, DEFA and DFF
Deutscher Fernsehfunk
Deutscher Fernsehfunk , known from 1972 to 1990 as Fernsehen der DDR , was the state television broadcaster in East Germany.-Foundation:...

. He continued his acting career after the reunification
German reunification
German reunification was the process in 1990 in which the German Democratic Republic joined the Federal Republic of Germany , and when Berlin reunited into a single city, as provided by its then Grundgesetz constitution Article 23. The start of this process is commonly referred by Germans as die...

. In total, he appeared in more than a hundred film and television productions.

He received the Art Prize of the German Democratic Republic
Art Prize of the German Democratic Republic
The Art Prize of the German Democratic Republic was an East German state award bestowed on individuals for contributions in various fields of art.-History:...

 in a collective awarding at October 1986.

Selected filmography

  • 1954 - Ernst Thälmann
    Ernst Thälmann (film)
    Ernst Thälmann is an East German film in two parts about the life of the German Communist leader Ernst Thälmann, directed by Kurt Maetzig and starring Günther Simon in the title role. The first picture, Ernst Thälmann - Sohn seiner Klasse , was released at 1954...

  • 1958 - Les Misérables
    Les Misérables (1958 film)
    Les Misérables is a film version of the Victor Hugo novel released in France on March 12, 1958. Written by Michel Audiard and René Barjavel, the film was directed by Jean-Paul Le Chanois...

  • 1959 - Bevor der Blitz einschlägt
    Bevor der Blitz einschlägt
    Bevor der Blitz einschlägt is an East German comedy film directed by Richard Groschopp. It was released in 1959.-Plot:...

  • 1959 - The Goodies
    Musterknaben is an East German romantic comedy film, directed by Johannes Knittel. It was released in 1959.-Plot:...

  • 1959 - Goods For Catalonia
    Ware für Katalonien
    Ware für Katalonien is an East German black-and-white film, directed by Richard Groschopp. It was released in 1959.-Plot:...

  • 1959 - Love's Confusion
  • 1961 - The Gleiwitz Case
    The Gleiwitz Case
    The Gleiwitz Case is an East German war film directed by Gerhard Klein. It was released in 1961.-Cast:* Hannjo Hasse as Alfred Helmut Naujocks* Christoph Bayertt as Franz Sitte* Wolfgang Kalweit as Hans-Wilhelm Kraweit* Georg Leopold as Franz Wyczorek...

  • 1963 - Naked among Wolves
    Naked Among Wolves (film)
    Naked Among Wolves is a 1963 East German film directed by Frank Beyer and starring Erwin Geschonneck and Armin Mueller-Stahl. The film is based on the 1958 novel, also titled Naked Among Wolves, by Bruno Apitz.-Plot:...

  • 1970 - Liberation
    Liberation (film series)
    Liberation is an epic five-part film series considered the most large-scale World War II film ever made in the Soviet Union. Filmed from 1967 to 1971, the first part was released during 1970 for the 25th anniversary of Victory Day...

  • 1988 - Fallada: The Last Chapter
    Fallada: The Last Chapter
    Fallada: The Last Chapter is a 1988 East German drama film directed by Roland Gräf. It was entered into the 39th Berlin International Film Festival.-Cast:* Jörg Gudzuhn as Hans Fallada* Jutta Wachowiak as Anna Fallada* Katrin Saß as Ursula Losch...

  • 1989 - Coming Out.

External links

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