Image of Camilla Horn

Camilla Horn

The daughter of a railroad official, Camilla Horn was educated in Germany and Switzerland. She initially trained as a dressmaker and received her first job experience in a fashion salon in Erfurt. This was merely a stepping stone for a performing career which began with dance lessons in Berlin and subsequent acting studies under Lucie Höflich. The lithe, blond and strikingly beautiful Camilla soon appeared in cabaret revues staged by Rudolf Nelson. By 1926, she was employed as an extra at Ufa, where she was spotted by the director F.W. Murnau, who found in her the ideal representation of Gretchen for his seminal production of Fausto (1926) . The role catapulted Camilla to instant stardom. Within a year, she was signed by United Artists in Hollywood, befriending Charles Chaplin and, more importantly, studio chairman Joseph M. Schenck. The friendship with Schenck may, or may not, have led to an affair -- depending on which story one is to believe -- but it did result in two high profile starring roles opposite John Barrymore in the torrid melodramas Tempestad (1928) and Amor eterno (1929), both produced by Schenck. Neither film was a commercial success. With the coming of sound, Camilla returned to Europe, briefly appearing on stage in London and Paris, before resuming her screen career in Germany. As the 1930's went on, she rarely turned down a role, playing anything from baronesses and fashion models, to vamps and 'fallen women'. The quality of her films was variable, but there were several noteworthy standouts, such as Hans in allen Gassen (1930) (opposite Hans Albers), Fiesta en palacio (1934) and Payasos (1938) (as a circus artiste, again with Albers). During this tumultuous decade, Camilla conducted a lengthy affair with the singer Louis Graveure, fifteen years her senior. This came to an end in 1938, when Graveure was suspected of espionage by the Gestapo and fled to England, via the Cote d'Azure. After her luxury villa in Berlin was ransacked in search for non-existent clues, Camilla's outspoken criticism of the Nazi regime reached a point where it got her into serious trouble. She saw out the first half of her career with a trio of long forgotten films made in Italy. Having failed in an attempt to flee to Switzerland, she kept a low profile and even tried her hand at farming. After the war, she had a stint as an interpreter for the occupying U.S. forces in Germany. Camilla made a successful return to the stage in a 1948 Frankfurt production of Jean Cocteau's "L'Aigle a Deux Tetes" (aka 'The Eagle Has Two Heads'). She spent the latter half of her acting career playing grand dames, matriarchs and worldly ladies with colourful backgrounds, in both films and on television. In 1974, she was awarded the 'Filmband in Gold' (also known as 'Lola') for lifetime achievement in the German film industry. In her 1985 autobiography, "Verliebt in die Liebe" ('In Love with Love'), she happily recounted her marriages and liaisons.

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Apr 25, 1903 In Frankfurt am Main, Germany
Movie/TV Credits:
First Appeared:
In the movie Ways to Strength and Beauty 1925-03-16
Latest Project:
Movie Los 5 Faust de F. W. Murnau 2002-11-26
Known For
Poster of Bayerischer Filmpreis
Poster of Appointment in Beirut
Poster of German Film Awards
Poster of Die letzte Runde
Movie Los 5 Faust de F. W. Murnau Herself / Gretchen (archive footage) 2002-11-26
Movie Wenn ich sonntags in mein Kino geh'... Herself 1992-12-20
Movie Spiders 1989-08-23
Movie Schloß Königswald Fürstin Großmutter 1988-01-14
Movie Der Unsichtbare Olga Benjamin 1987-01-01
Series The Black Forest Clinic Dr. Rens′ Mutter 1985-10-22
Movie Frankies Braut Frau von Kieblitz 1982-01-01
Series Bayerischer Filmpreis Self 1979-12-01
Movie He's at It Again Paula 1970-01-30
Movie Immer bei Vollmond Wegelin's Mother 1970-03-13
Movie Appointment in Beirut Evelyn Brown 1969-01-17
Series Gestern gelesen Frau von Marwitz 1969-06-06
Series Dreizehn Briefe Frau Neumann 1967-03-10
Movie Die Erbin Elizabeth Almond 1958-07-09
Movie Vati macht Dummheiten Baronin von Baran 1953-12-02
Movie Königin der Arena Diana Bianca, Dompteuse 1952-12-19
Series German Film Awards Self 1951-01-01
Movie Gesucht wird Majora Gritt Faller 1949-09-02
Movie Intimitäten Helene 1948-02-03
Movie Seine beste Rolle Elise Sander 1944-01-20
Movie Vertigine Corinna Dellys, l'amante di Alberto 1942-03-10
Movie Friedemann Bach Mariella Fiorini 1941-06-25
Movie Herz ohne Heimat Dina Horster 1940-08-06
Movie Polterabend Lissi 1940-03-21
Movie Die letzte Runde Lilly 1940-11-20
Movie Die keusche Geliebte Renée Lemonier 1940-12-27
Movie Roman eines Arztes Käthe Üding - seine Frau 1939-09-14
Movie Zentrale Rio Diane Mercier 1939-10-04
Movie Rote Orchideen Gräfin Ogolenska 1938-09-07
Movie In geheimer Mission Marion 1938-12-16
Movie Fahrendes Volk Pepita, Kunstreiterin 1938-12-15
Movie White Slaves Manja - seine Tochter 1937-01-05
Movie Crooks in Tails Vera Dalmatoff 1937-08-25
Movie Sein letztes Modell Maria Várady 1937-04-23
Movie Der rote Reiter Hasia Nowrowska 1935-02-01
Movie Der Doppelgänger Jenny Miller 1934-02-01
Movie Wenn ich König wär Inge Winkler 1934-01-09
Movie A Waltz for You Fürstin Stefanie 1934-08-11
Movie Die große Chance Helga 1934-03-30
Movie Der letzte Walzer Vera 1934-11-27
Movie Ich sehne mich nach dir Ivonne Brandt 1934-12-20
Movie The Luck of a Sailor Louise 1934-12-10
Movie Moral und Liebe Vera 1933-02-03
Movie Matinee Idol Sonia Vance 1933-08-29
Movie Racoczy-Marsch Vilma 1933-12-15
Movie Money Governs the World Lilly 1933-10-13
Movie The Five Accursed Gentlemen Camilla 1932-03-23
Movie Der Frechdachs Alice Ménard 1932-04-28
Movie The Return of Raffles Elga 1932-09-27
Movie The Song of the Nations 1931-03-17
Movie Sonntag des Lebens Ellen Hobart 1931-04-10
Movie Die Nacht ohne Pause Letta Larbo 1931-12-22
Movie Ich geh' aus und Du bleibst da Gaby, Mannequin 1931-04-10
Movie The Great Longing Eva von Loe 1930-08-24
Movie Hans in allen Gassen Elisabeth, seine Braut 1930-12-23
Movie Eternal Love Ciglia 1929-05-11
Movie Die Königsloge Alice Doren 1929-11-29
Movie Tempest Princess Tamara 1928-05-27
Movie Jugendrausch Camille de Saxe 1927-06-09
Movie Der fröhliche Weinberg Clärchen Gunderloch 1927-12-20
Movie Faust Gretchen/ Marguerite 1926-10-13
Movie Madame Wants No Children 1926-12-14
Movie Ways to Strength and Beauty 1925-03-16