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Carl Koch Quick Facts
Carl Koch is a director and screenwriter of German origin, born the in Nümbrecht (Germany), died the , in Barnet (Great Britain).
Carl Koch’s Biography
The life and work of Carl Koch are indissolubly linked to his wife, Lotte Reiniger.
Close to Bertolt Brecht and Jean Renoir, the Reiniger-Koch couple worked on animated films which, in their time, were avant-garde films. In particular, they made The Adventures of Prince Ahmed together in 1926.
The filmmakers were pretty frowned upon by the Nazis, who criticized their closeness to the left under the Weimar Republic. Also, after Hitler came to power in 1933, they sought to leave Berlin to settle in London. But Koch is having trouble getting a visa he continues to make films in Germany before he can stay in Britain in 1936 thanks to Renoir. Lacking a permanent visa, he is then sentenced to wander between Paris and Rome, before having to return to Berlin during the War.
During his Parisian period, he is with Jean Renoir on the set of La Grande Illusion as a technical advisor: Both men realized that during the First World War, the battalion to which Koch belonged was probably shooting on the plane that Renoir was flying. The two men are very close, they work closely together on La Marseillaise then on The Rule of the game, considered by modern critics as one of the greatest movies in the history of cinema.
After filming The Rule of the Game, in February-March 1939, the two friends are contacted by the Italian National Film Service: Mussolini wishes to entrust them with an adaptation of La Tosca. But the imminent entry into the war of Italy caused Renoir to abandon the project, ended by Koch with the young Luchino Visconti as assistant.
Koch and his wife, determined never to live in Germany, were able to settle in London permanently until 1949.
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