Producer Franz Seitz, who made the Oscar-winning German pic “The Tin Drum,” died Jan. 19 after long illness. He was 84.
Seitz was born in Munich into a filmmaking family. His father was director-writer-producer Franz Seitz, Sr., his mother actress Anni Terofal. He started as a painter but moved into film, initially as a set designer.
In 1951, a year before his father’s death, Seitz worked with his father for the first and only time, producing “Der Letzte Schuss” (The Last Shot), which his father directed. Together with partner Jochen Genzow, Seitz founded his own production company, Allegro (later Ariston), and partnered with Roberto Rosselini on “Paura.”
Over the next three decades, he often worked with themes from mostly German contemporary literature, on scripts he often wrote and sometimes directed himself, as in Thomas Mann’s “Doctor Faustus.” His alliance with Volker Schloendorff on “The Tin Drum” in 1979 resulted in a peak for German cinema with the Palme d’Or and the Oscar.
He was described as boisterous as well as intellectual, and his production work of some 50 pics also included silly comedies of the kind popular in Germany in the 1960s and 70s. Seitz, nicknamed “Buba,” kept making films into the 1990s.