Press Release

Press Release | Berlin, 06/18/2019

UFA Film Nights in Berlin Once Again Feature Great Masterpieces of Weimar Cinema

  • From 21 to 23 August 2019, Museum Island will serve as the venue for the screening of legendary silent films, accompanied by live music.
  • World premiere of the digitally restored film A CRAZY NIGHT, plus WOMAN IN THE MOON and MADAME DUBARRY with new scores
  • Live accompaniment performed by The Sprockets film orchestra, DJ legend Jeff Mills, and Ekkehard Wölk with the Ensemble Ancien Régime.
  • Tickets now available

Pure movie magic on Berlin’s Museum Island: Bertelsmann and UFA present the ninth UFA Film Nights from August 21 to 23, 2019. On three evenings, early masterpieces of cinema history will be screened in the open air, against a spectacular backdrop and accompanied by live music.

The UFA Film Nights have become a cinematic-musical highlight of Berlin’s cultural summer, with a dedicated stage orchestra and big screen erected for the occasion in the Kolonnadenhof on Museum Island, a World Cultural Heritage site. Each evening, close to 1,000 guests will get to enjoy select cinematic art from the Weimar period, with live musical accompaniment and in a unique, historic architectural setting.

Following a reception at Bertelsmann Unter den Linden 1, Berlin, the silent film festival begins on Wednesday, August 21, with Richard Oswald’s A CRAZY NIGHT (German: Eine tolle Nacht). The movie from 1926/27, long believed lost and rediscovered in the Gosfilmofond Russian state film archive, was digitally restored this year. It will now be screened for the first time in its revised version. Another premiere at the UFA Film Nights 2019 will be the new score by Frido ter Beek and the internationally renowned Dutch pianist Maud Nelissen, commissioned by ZDF/ARTE. It will be performed by The Sprockets; the film orchestra that already thrilled audiences with their music for THE APACHES OF PARIS at the UFA Film Nights 2018. ARTE will broadcast the restored silent movie with the new score on August 26, 2019. The actor and film patron Uwe Ochsenknecht will introduce the silent movie comedy and its historical background.

Fritz Lang’s epochal and technically prescient masterpiece, and one of Ufa’s best-known movies, WOMAN IN THE MOON (German: Frau im Mond), follows on Thursday. DJ legend Jeff Mills, who has revised his score for the film for the occasion, will perform the soundtrack. Mills had performed his soundtrack for METROPOLIS at the UFA Film Nights 2017. The curator of the UFA Film Nights, film historian Friedemann Beyer, will give an overview of the importance of WOMAN IN THE MOON.

On Friday evening – 100 years to the month after its premiere as the Berlin Zoo Palast’s opening movie – Ernst Lubitsch’s revolutionary epic MADAME DUBARRY (retitled PASSION in the United States) is on the program. A new score composed by Ekkehard Wölk will be performed by the Ensemble Ancien Regime. Friedemann Beyer will introduce this evening’s movie as well.

The program at a glance:

Wednesday, August 21st, 2019. Doors open at 8:30 p.m., screening starts at 9:00 p.m.
Director: Richard Oswald
With Ossi Oswalda, Harry Liedtke, Henry Bender, Paul Graetz, Kurt Gerron
Production: Richard Oswald-Produktion, Length: 83 min.
Music: New composition by Frido ter Beek and Maud Nelissen, commissioned by ZDF/ARTE. The film orchestra The Sprockets will perform the musical accompaniment.

Thursday, August 22nd, 2019. Doors open at 8:30 p.m., screening starts at 9:00 p.m.
Director: Fritz Lang
With Gerda Maurus, Willy Fritsch, Klaus Pohl, Gustav von Wangenheim, Fritz Rasp
Production: Fritz Lang Film for Ufa, Length: 156 min.
Music: Jeff Mills performs a new musical interpretation

Friday, August 23rd, 2019. Doors open at 8:30 p.m., screening starts at 9:00 p.m.
MADAME DUBARRY(1919), Director: Ernst Lubitsch
With Pola Negri, Emil Jannings, Reinhold Schünzel, Harry Liedtke, Eduard von Winterstein
Production: Paul Davidson Produktions-AG “Union” (PAGU) for Ufa, Length: 114 min.
Music: New composition by Ekkehard Wölk. Performed by: Ekkehard Wölk and the Ensemble Ancien Régime

The UFA Film Nights hosted by Bertelsmann und UFA will also be held in the European metropolis of Brussels in September 2019.

For many years, Bertelsmann has been engaged in a variety of cultural initiatives both in Germany and internationally. The Group’s “Culture@Bertelsmann” activities comprise exhibitions, readings and concerts, the “Blue Sofa” literary format, as well as a commitment to preserving Europe’s cultural heritage. For instance, Bertelsmann owns the Archivio Storico Ricordi in Milan, a music archive that contains a wealth of unique testimonies to Italian opera history. Bertelsmann is indexing the archival holdings to meet the latest standards and making the cultural treasures accessible for a wide audience. As a company with a long history in filmmaking, Bertelsmann also supports and sponsors the restoration, digitization and screening of major silent films.

This year’s UFA Film Nights in Berlin are being held with the kind support of ARTE, the National Museums in Berlin (Staatliche Museen zu Berlin), the Friedrich Wilhelm Murnau Foundation, Maz & Movie, and Gegenbauer Facility Management. Stroer, radio eins, and RBB Kulturradio are the event’s media partners.

More information at  , at  and on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram:  #UFAFilmNights.

Tickets for the UFA Film Nights are now available for 15 EUR including advance booking charge for the first and third evening, and 20 EUR including advance booking charge for the second evening.

Online:  or 
Phone: 01806 999 0000 (0.20 €/call from German landlines / max. 0.60 €/call from German mobiles)

About Bertelsmann
Bertelsmann is a media, services and education company that operates in about 50 countries around the world. It includes the broadcaster 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 117,000 employees and generated revenues of €17.7 billion in the 2018 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.

About UFA
UFA is one of the oldest and best-known entertainment brands in the world and today does business as a powerful creator of entertainment content that has steadily expanded its market leadership as a film and television producer in Germany over the years. The company has evolved from a creator of programs and TV producer into a content specialist that delivers a range of solutions for digital and multimedia content exploitation – for all major broadcasters in Germany as well as for many other partners. The UFA FICTION, UFA SERIAL DRAMA and UFA SHOW & FACTUAL production units operate under the UFA umbrella. UFA is part of the global media and entertainment company Fremantle, which operates the worldwide production business of Bertelsmann-owned RTL Group.