If that name seems to ring a bell, it should. Berlin-born Anna Maria Muehe’s parents were both thesps: her mother is East German Jenny Groellmann, and her father, Ulrich Muehe, is best known internationally as the star of “The Lives of Others,” which won the foreign-lingo film Oscar in 2006.
For Muehe, another career was a possibility (“Like anybody, I was considering different things”), but after shooting her first feature at the age of 15 — Maria von Heland’s “Big Girls Don’t Cry” (2001) — she found the lure of showbiz too great to resist.
A year later, she won the actress award at the Copenhagen Film Festival for her lead role in Achim von Borries’ “Love in Thoughts,” and has since appeared in Julie Delpy’s “The Countess,” Til Schweiger’s “1 1/2 Knights” and Christian Schwochow’s “November Child,” for which she received a German Film Award nomination.
“I think my great fortune, so far, is that every movie I’ve made, I’ve worked with brilliant actors. For example, last year I played alongside Otto Sander, a man who’s acted for such a long time, and in so many different films, yet who’s never lost the joy in what he does,” she says.
Does she consider herself a European or a German actress? “I don’t really see any difference. To get me hooked, it just needs a great script and an interesting director; it’s not important whether it’s a German or an international project — the work and the preparation are the same.
“For example, one of my favourite directors is Dominik Graf. I’m really fascinated by his way of dealing with projects and the way he works with actors. But then, there are so many outstanding directors all over the world. It would be an honor to work with any of them.”