Image of Mai Zetterling

Mai Zetterling

Mai Elisabeth Zetterling ( May 24, 1925 – March 17, 1994) was a Swedish actress and film director. She began directing in the early 1960s, starting with political documentaries and a short film called The War Game (1962), which was nominated for a BAFTA award, and won a Silver Lion at Venice. Her first feature film Älskande par (1964, "Loving Couples"), based on the novels of Agnes von Krusenstjerna, was banned at the Cannes Film Festival for its sexual explicitness and nudity. Kenneth Tynan of The Observer later called it "one of the most ambitious debuts since Citizen Kane." It was not the only film she made that would stir up controversy for its frank sexuality (early pioneer on voyeurism). When critics reviewing her debut feature said that "Mai Zetterling directs like a man," she began to explore feminist themes more explicitly in her work. The Girls, which had an all-star Swedish cast including Bibi Andersson and Harriet Andersson, discussed women's liberation (or lack thereof) in a society controlled by men, as the protagonists compare their lives to characters in the play Lysistrata, and find that things have not progressed very much for women since ancient times.

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May 24, 1925 In Västerås, Västmanlands län, Sweden
Movie/TV Credits:
First Appeared:
In the movie Lasse-Maja 1941-11-28
Latest Project:
Movie Regissören: en film om Mai Zetterling 2015-05-22
Known For
Poster of Hidden Agenda
Poster of Stockholm
Poster of The Third Man
Poster of Studio One
Movie Regissören: en film om Mai Zetterling herself (archival footage) 2015-05-22
Movie Möte med Mai Unknown 1996-01-01
Movie Morfars resa Elin Fromm 1993-01-29
Movie The Witches Helga Eveshim 1990-05-25
Movie Hidden Agenda Moa 1990-11-21
Movie Calling the Shots 1988-09-08
Movie Stulet nyår Gerda 1978-02-27
Movie Stockholm 1978-01-01
Series Svenska noveller Gerda 1978-02-06
Movie My Heart Is Red Nietzsche 1977-03-23
Movie We Have Many Names Unknown 1976-03-19
Movie The Bay of St. Michel Unknown 1963-03-01
Movie The Man Who Finally Died Lisa von Deutsch 1963-12-01
Movie The Main Attraction Gina 1962-11-01
Movie Only Two Can Play Liz 1962-01-19
Movie Offbeat Ruth Lombard 1961-01-01
Movie Lords of Little Egypt: Mai Zetterling Among the Gypsies Unknown 1961-01-03
Movie Piccadilly Third Stop Christine Preedy 1960-09-05
Movie Faces in the Dark Christiane Hammond 1960-11-22
Series The Third Man Unknown 1959-10-02
Movie Jet Storm Carol Tilley 1959-09-16
Movie The Master Builder Unknown 1958-02-23
Movie The Truth About Women Julie Eaton 1957-01-01
Movie Abandon Ship Nurse Julie White 1957-03-12
Movie A Prize of Gold Maria 1955-10-14
Movie Knock On Wood Ilse Nordstrom 1954-04-06
Movie Dance Little Lady Nina Gordon 1954-07-13
Movie Desperate Moment Anna DeBurg 1953-03-17
Movie The Frightened Bride Doris Rickardson 1952-04-15
Movie The Ringer Lisa 1952-11-24
Movie Hell Is Sold Out Valerie Martin 1951-06-01
Movie Blackmailed Mrs. Carol Edwards 1951-01-30
Movie The Lost People Lily 1949-08-22
Movie The Bad Lord Byron Teresa Guiccioli 1949-04-18
Movie Naughty Arlette Arlette 1949-11-29
Movie Music in Darkness Ingrid Olofsson 1948-01-17
Movie Quartet Jeanne 1948-10-26
Series Studio One Unknown 1948-11-07
Movie Portrait from Life Lidia 1948-12-15
Movie Frieda Frieda 1947-06-19
Movie Iris and the Lieutenant Iris Mattson 1946-12-16
Movie Sunshine Follows Rain Marit Germundsdotter 1946-12-26
Movie Torment Bertha Olsson 1944-10-02
Movie Jag dräpte Miss Peters 1943-10-26
Movie Lasse-Maja Fanny 1941-11-28