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His Majesty Needs Sunshine (Majestaet brauchen Sonne)

His Majesty Needs Sunshine

For the turn of the millenium, a film about the disastrous idea of Germany's last Kaiser Wilhelm II, to stage himself, his government and his nation as a Gesamt-kunstwerk. The most frequently photographed and filmed media celebrity at the beginning of this century, His Majesty needed sunshine to illuminate his spectacular public appearances: the proverbial "imperial weather". After a 30-year reign he followed his forced abdication at the end of World War I by living in exile until 1941, surrounded by the props and images of his glory years, in the luxurious Kasteel Huis Doorn in the Netherlands. He selected his own epitaph: Extol me not, for I need no exultation. Judge me not, for I shall be judged.

Peter Schamoni was born in Berlin in 1934. He started making documentary films in 1957, receiving many international awards for his cinematic artist portraits. In 1973, the American Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences nominated his film Hundertwasser's Rainy Days (Hundertwassers Regentag for an OSCAR. His first feature film, Closed Season for Foxes received the Special Prize at the 1966 Berlin Film Festival. He has produced such feature films as: Brass Tacks Baby, Once A Year, Daddy and Now and Everything. Two feature films, Spring Symphony (1983) and Caspar David Friedrich - Borders of Time (1986), both of which he wrote and directed, were produced in cooperation with the East German DEFA Studios. He also made the award-winning documentary about Max Ernst My Wanderings - My Unrest (1991), as well as Niki de Saint Phalle - Who Is The Monster, You Or Me? (1996) and His Majesty Needs Sunshine (1999).
Genre Biopic
Category Documentary
Year of Production 1999
Director Peter Schamoni
Screenplay Peter Schamoni
Cinematography Michael Bartlett, Ernst Hirsch
Thomas Krattenmacher
Silke Matzpohl
Producer Peter Schamoni
Production Company Peter Schamoni Film/Munich, in co-production with ZDF, Verenigde Nederlandse Filmcompagnie/Amsterdam
Length 105 min
Format 35 mm, color
Original Version
Sound Technology Dolby SR
Festivals Leipzig 1999 (opening film)
With backing from German Federal Film Board, FilmFernsehFonds Bayern, BKM
German Distributor Arthaus Filmverleih/Munich

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Peter Schamoni
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