Press Release

Press Release | Berlin, 08/24/2022

UFA Film Nights 2022 Transport Audiences to the Mountains of South Tyrol

  • Silent film festival kicks off with Arnold Fanck’s DER BERG DES SCHICKSALS, the first mountain film in cinema history
  • Celebrity guests at opening reception at Bertelsmann Unter den Linden 1
  • Bertelsmann and UFA attract silent film fans to Berlin’s Museum Island for three evenings of open-air cinema and live music

Berlin, August 24, 2022 – As the opening movie of the 12th UFA Film Nights in Berlin, Bertelsmann and UFA present DER BERG DES SCHICKSALS (MOUNTAIN OF DESTINY), the first mountain film ever made. The fateful scaling of a peak in the South Tyrolean Dolomites attracted hundreds of viewers to the UFA Pavilion on Berlin’s Nollendorfplatz in 1924 for the film’s world premiere. This evening, too, hundreds of film fans are expected, this time at an open-air screening on Berlin’s Museum Island. They will experience the world premiere of the new version, restored by the Friedrich Wilhelm Murnau Foundation, of the movie in which Luis Trenker once made his acting debut. Florian C. Reithner composed a new score, which will be performed by the Metropolis Orchestra Berlin under the direction of Burkhard Götze, and accompanied on the organ by Reithner himself.

On Thursday, the UFA Film Nights continue with Fritz Lang’s socially critical masterpiece DR. MABUSE – DER SPIELER I (DR. MABUSE – THE GAMBLER I, 1922) and a new musical interpretation by DJ legend Jeff Mills. The featured film on Friday, the last evening of this year's UFA Film Nights, is Richard Eichberg's musical relationship comedy DIE KEUSCHE SUSANNE (CHASTE SUSANNE, 1926), featuring the first joint appearance of Lilian Harvey and Willy Fritsch, the later dream couple of the emerging sound film. The music to DIE KEUSCHE SUSANNE is presented by the Silent Light Ensemble under the direction of pianist, composer, and arranger Ekkehard Wölk.

Thomas Rabe, Chairman & CEO of Bertelsmann, commented: “Finally, we can celebrate the UFA Film Nights again as we did before the pandemic: with live audiences watching masterpieces of early film history, and now even with accompanying livestreams. As a company with a long history of our own in film, it is important to us to preserve the creative achievements of earlier generations – which includes their cinematic legacy. Silent films are the starting point of literally all cinematic genres. They once gave rise to the creativity and diversity of the film industry as we know it today."

UFA CEO Nico Hofmann added: "I am thrilled that we are able to present restored silent films to a broad audience for the twelfth time now. This shows once again that the UFA Film Nights have become an institution in Berlin’s cultural summer - we inspire film fans anew every year with the power of moving pictures."

Before the projection team gets to work on Museum Island, Bertelsmann and UFA will welcome around 300 guests to a reception at Bertelsmann's Unter den Linden 1 premises. Celebrated actors, cultural figures and notables from politics and society are expected to attend. Besides Gesine Cukrowski, who will introduce the film, directors Fatih Akin and Leander Haußmann have confirmed their attendance, as have actors Katja Riemann, Caroline Peters, Felix Klare, Stephan Grossmann, Annika Kuhl, Susanna Simon, Johannes Langer, Melanie Marschke, and Uwe Preuss. Musician Max Raabe, author Thea Dorn, and renowned cultural representatives such as the President of the Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation, Prof. Dr. Hermann Parzinger, and Berlinale directors Carlo Chatrian and Mariette Rissenbeek will also be attending.

Anyone who didn't get tickets for the opening film or for the two following evenings can watch the screenings as livestreams on  as well as on Bertelsmann and UFA’s social media accounts starting at about 9:00 p.m. on each evening. After the livestreams, the films will each remain available on demand for another 24 hours.

The Schedule at a Glance

Wednesday, August 24, 2022, film starts at 9:00 p.m.
DER BERG DES SCHICKSALS / MOUNTAIN OF DESTINY (1924), directed by Arnold Fanck
With Luis Trenker, Erna Morena, Hannes Schneider, Frida Richard Hertha von Walther, Gustav Oberg, Arnold Fanck jun.
Production: Arnold Fanck
Length: 92 min.
Music: New composition by Florian C. Reithner. Performed by the Metropolis Orchestra Berlin.

Thursday, August 25, 2022, film starts at 9:00 p.m.
DR. MABUSE, DER SPIELER I: Der Große Spieler. Ein Bild der Zeit
DR. MABUSE, THE GAMBLER I: The Great Player. A Picture of the Times (1921/22)
directed by Fritz Lang
With Rudolf Klein-Rogge, Aud Egede Nissen, Gertrude Welcker, Alfred Abel, Bernhard Goetzke, Paul Richter, Hans Adalbert von Schlettow
Production: Uco-Film Berlin, Producer: Erich Pommer
Length: 155 min.
Music: New composition by Jeff Mills

Friday, August 26, 2022, film starts at 9:00 p.m.
DIE KEUSCHE SUSANNE / CHASTE SUSANNE (1926), directed by Richard Eichberg
With Ruth Weyher, Lilian Harvey, Willy Fritsch, Werner Fuetterer, Wilhelm Bendow, Sascha Bragowa, Jean Gilbert, Ernst Hofmann, Hans Junkermann
Production: Richard Eichberg Film
Length: 121 min.
Music: New composition by the Silent Light Ensemble

Partners of the UFA Film Nights are the Friedrich Wilhelm Murnau Foundation, the German Film Institute & Film Museum, Stiftung Preußischer Kulturbesitz and Gegenbauer. Ströer, radioeins and rbbKultur are media partners.

About Bertelsmann
Bertelsmann is a media, services and education company that operates in about 50 countries around the world. It includes the entertainment company RTL Group, the trade book publisher Penguin Random House, the magazine publisher Gruner + Jahr, the music company BMG, the service provider Arvato, the Bertelsmann Printing Group, the Bertelsmann Education Group and Bertelsmann Investments, an international network of funds. The company has around 145,000 employees and generated revenues of €18.7 billion in the 2021 financial year. Bertelsmann stands for creativity and entrepreneurship. This combination promotes first-class media content and innovative service solutions that inspire customers around the world. Bertelsmann aspires to achieve climate neutrality by 2030.

About UFA
As one of Germany’s oldest and most distinguished entertainment brands, UFA today presents itself as a high-performance program creator that has continuously expanded its market leadership as a film and TV producer in Germany in recent years. In the process, the company has evolved from a program creator and TV producer into a content specialist, and produces innovative programs for German and international broadcasters, partners, and platforms. The production units UFA Fiction, UFA Serial Drama, UFA Show & Factual and UFA Documentary operate under the UFA umbrella. UFA is part of the international media and entertainment company Fremantle, the worldwide production arm of RTL Group, which is part of Bertelsmann. The managing directors of UFA are Nico Hofmann (CEO) and Joachim Kosack.