Participant profile: Fred Breinersdorfer

We land in Germany now, and meet screenwriter and novelist Fred Breinersdorfer.

Fred Breinersdorfer

Fred Breinersdorfer

Fred grew up in Mainz, and studied law and sociology at the universities of Mainz and Tübingen. In 1975 he finished his education with a Ph.D. from the University of Tübingen, and started to practice as an attorney-at-law, specialising in constitutional law and administration law in Stuttgart.

In 1980 Fred published his first crime novel. Others followed. The books (and later also films) with an attorney called Jean Abel as the main character – a guy with a French background – became a remarkable success. Film scripts, theatre plays and short stories came out in the following years. His portfolio now consists of 12 novels, two theatre games and a long row of short stories and four radio plays. Since 1983 he’s also written more than 55 prime time TV movies – many of them award-winning.

Fred was the president of the German Writer’s Association (VS) and he is member of German P.E.N and the Deutsche Filmakademie. In 1994 Fred Breinersdorfer ran for office for the German Federal Parliament as a candidate of the SPD, the party of Willy Brandt. He failed by a narrow margin; fortunately, he says today.

After the elections he dropped his law job (but not his licence) and became a professional writer. His hobbies are painting and running. He finished the Berlin Marathon, the New York City Marathon and in 2004 the Chicago Marathon. He was (among others) awarded with the “German Film Award”, the “Adolph Grimme Preis mit Gold” (the so called German TV Oscar) and nominated for several other prices.

With the movie Sophie Scholl – the final days (2005) Fred had a world success – as writer and co-producer. It was nominated for an Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film, and won 16 international awards, including the Berlin Silver Bear, European Film Awards, and German Film Awards.


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