Stefan Zweig has been the subject of new interest in recent years. Two new biographies have appeared quite recently and in addition his friendship with Joseph Roth has been the subject of fierce debate after an article in The London Review of Books by Michael Hoffmann. “Ostende. 1936, Sommer Der Freundschaft” by Volker Weidermann is a magnificent read on this relationship and the plight of exiles from Nazi Germany was published just last year and has been translated into English as “Summer before the Dark, Ostend Stefan Zweig and Joseph Roth;Ostend 1936“(Reviews may be read at https://www.amazon.co.uk/Summer-Before-Dark-Stefan-Joseph/dp/1782272038/ref=pd_bxgy_14_2?ie=UTF8&psc=1&refRID=JA0N7E4NR05FFN2CAHF9 )It was also Radio4’s Book of the week. The Sunday Times, for instance, said of this book;
‘For such a slim book to convey with such poignancy the extinction of a generation of “Great Europeans” is a triumph’. However Zweig’s life experiences also formed the background and leitmotif for the zany film and also a book by Wes Anderson, The Grand Budapest Hotel. One reader comments, “I also feel like I owe this movie a great deal, in that it turned me on to the works of Stefan Zweig, master Austrian storyteller, and my new favorite author”
The new film just screening in Germany is called “Vor der Morgenroete” and features Josef Hader as Stefan Zweig and is produced by the actress, Maria Schrader who recently played a prominent role in the Channel 4 series, Deutschland 83.
Stefan Zweig was a renowned author German together with Thomas Mann the most translated in his time. Already in 1934, Zweig left his native Austria to go into exile from which he did not return. In her compelling and sensual opulent film Maria Schrader shows the world-famous author in six episodes from his life; his first stay in Brazil and the participation in the P.E.N.-Congress in Buenos Aires in 1936 about visiting New York City and his first wife Friderike in 1941 until his death in 1942 in Petrópolis. There, Zweig wrote his famous work “The Chess Game“. Josef Hader shines in the title role of the famous Austrian writer and pacifist Stefan Zweig. Barbara Sukowa as his first wife Friderike, also gave a convincing performance. Another strong impression was given by Aenne Schwarz as Zweig’s delicate and alluring second wife.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3wLiyFyfuB4