Ths one MAGNIFICENT OBSESSION-019-(1000037685)[2]

Source: Locarno Film Festival

Magnificent Obsession

Switzerland’s Locarno Film Festival is set to explore the life and work of legendary German Hollywood director Douglas Sirk for the retrospective of its 75th edition, running August 3-13 this year.

The celebration of his work will coincide with the 35th anniversary of the death of the filmmaker whose classic melodramas include Magnificent Obsession, All That Heaven Allows, There’s Always A Tomorrow, Written On The Wind, A Time To Love And Die and Imitation Of Life.

Born in Hamburg in 1897 as Hans Detlef Sierck, Sirk initially forged a career as a celebrated stage director in Germany before moving into film in the 1930s when he joined the UFA motion picture company.

He left Germany in 1937 due to his own political convictions and persecution of his Jewish wife, arriving in the US in 1941.

There, he changed his name to Douglas Sirk and secured a contract with Columbia. He remained in Hollywood for the next two decades before returning to Europe, living in Lugano, Switzerland where he died in 1987.

“The time has come to complete the historical and critical picture of quite a remarkable director, Douglas Sirk, including every facet of his work. That this should happen in Locarno, in the region where the master filmmaker chose to spend the last years of his life, fittingly underscores Sirk’s close ties with Canton Ticino,” said Locarno artistic director Giona A. Nazzaro.

”Sirk brilliantly exposed social hypocrisy as he created some of the most blazing, politically aware melodramas of all time,” he added.

The retrospective will screen his work as well as films with links to his work and documentaries. Locarno is also promising a fresh take on the director and his life through unpublished documents made available by the director’s family and preserved since 2012 at the Cinémathèque Suisse.

The retrospective is organised by Locarno in partnership with the Cinémathèque Suisse and Cinémathèque Française, and in collaboration with numerous international archives. It will travel internationally after the close of the festival including to the Cinémathèque Française in Paris from August 31, 2022.