Edit
The Blue Angel (1930) Poster

Trivia

Jump to: Spoilers (1)
There are various accounts of why Marlene Dietrich was cast as Lola Lola, but the one given by director Josef von Sternberg in his autobiography is that Dietrich came to test for the film with a bored, world-weary attitude because she was convinced she wasn't going to get the role and was merely going through the motions - and Sternberg hired her because that world-weary attitude was precisely what he wanted for the character.
33 of 33 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook   |  Twitter   |  Permalink
Josef von Sternberg's and Marlene Dietrich's love affair, which began during production of this film, caused quite a tabloid scandal and ultimately led to the dissolution of von Sternberg's marriage. On March 31, 1930, the night of the film's triumphant premiere in Berlin, the couple absconded to New York in order to begin a film career together in the United States. Von Sternberg's wife, Riza Royce, discovered the plans and arrived in the United States before her husband and Dietrich. She and her lawyer met the couple at the dock as they disembarked from their cruise liner. Royce served Dietrich with papers notifying her that she was being sued for libel and alienation of affection, and she filed for divorce from von Sternberg one month later.
26 of 26 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook   |  Twitter   |  Permalink
Marlene Dietrich's screen test for this film survives. In it, she pretends to upbraid her pianist, played by Friedrich Hollaender, the film's composer. She then sings the chorus of "You're the Cream In My Coffee" a number of times, in English, after which she climbs on the piano, hitches up her skirt (to show her legs) and sings, in German, a torch song called "Why Cry" by Peter Kreuder, a well-known song-writer who supervised the film's orchestral arrangements. As the test ends, Dietrich breaks character and apologizes to Hollaender.
22 of 22 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook   |  Twitter   |  Permalink
Marlene Dietrich had a somewhat restricted vocal range, which forced composer Friedrich Hollaender to tailor the music specifically to accommodate Dietrich's voice. Dietrich's unique singing talent, however, led to a lengthy second career as a concert singer after her film career waned.
18 of 18 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook   |  Twitter   |  Permalink
Emil Jannings grew resentful of the special attention director Josef von Sternberg showed to Marlene Dietrich. He would purportedly throw tantrums on set and once threatened to choke the leading lady.
16 of 16 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook   |  Twitter   |  Permalink
Emil Jannings' first film back in his native country after an abortive trip to Hollywood. Hoping to become a star of American films, Jannings was soundly rebuffed because no one could understand his accent.
14 of 14 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook   |  Twitter   |  Permalink
Lola Lola's erotic costume of stockings, high-heeled shoes, and a top hat was largely inspired by drawings from the Belgian artist Felicien Rops.
12 of 12 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook   |  Twitter   |  Permalink
During auditions for the role of Lola Lola, director Josef von Sternberg instructed each aspiring actress to bring a "naughty song" with them and prepare to sing it during their audition. Marlene Dietrich ignored the instruction and showed up to her audition without a song and unprepared to sing.
11 of 11 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook   |  Twitter   |  Permalink
The first of seven feature-film collaborations between Marlene Dietrich and Josef von Sternberg.
9 of 9 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook   |  Twitter   |  Permalink
The film is loosely based on Heinrich Mann's novel "Professor Unrath."
8 of 8 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook   |  Twitter   |  Permalink
This was Emil Jannings' final English-language film (it was released in both German and English versions - see Alternate Versions).
12 of 13 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook   |  Twitter   |  Permalink
The March-April issue of "Film Comment" features the Peter Hogue article "True Blue," which analyzes differences between the English and German language versions of the von Sternberg films.
7 of 7 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook   |  Twitter   |  Permalink
As a result of the film falling into public domain, a considerable number of prints exist. These vary widely in length and quality.
5 of 5 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook   |  Twitter   |  Permalink
Käthe Haack signed on for the role of Lola Lola but was replaced by Marlene Dietrich just before production began.
5 of 5 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook   |  Twitter   |  Permalink
Although Marlene Dietrich filmed this first and it was released in Europe first, it was not released in the United States until after release of Morocco (1930).
5 of 5 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook   |  Twitter   |  Permalink
Many actresses from the stage and screen were considered for the role of Lola Lola. Early contenders were Gloria Swanson, Phyllis Haver, Louise Brooks, Brigitte Helm, Lya De Putti, Lucie Mannheim, Trude Hesterberg, Käthe Haack and Lotte Lenya. Leni Riefenstahl later claimed to have been considered for the role, but her claim is dubious. Director Josef von Sternberg chose Marlene Dietrich, with whom he was by then having a love affair.
8 of 9 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook   |  Twitter   |  Permalink
Erich Pommer paid Heinrich Mann $8000 for the screen rights to his novel "Professor Unrat." The screenplay was then written by Robert Liebmann with Carl Zuckmayer contributing ideas, including the name Lola Lola and the Blue Angel Cafe. Josef von Sternberg insisted on the entire writing credit, claiming he had found the Mann novel on a dusty shelf and had directed the film from his own sketchy notes including the rooster-crowing sequence, and that he improvised much of the material during shooting.
3 of 3 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook   |  Twitter   |  Permalink
This English-language version was considered a lost film for many years, until a print was discovered in a German film archive. This version has been restored and shown as part of the Berlin and Beyond film festival at the Castro Theater in San Francisco on 19 January 2009.
2 of 2 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook   |  Twitter   |  Permalink
The title, The Blue Angel, refers to the name of the nightclub where Lola Lola worked.
9 of 16 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook   |  Twitter   |  Permalink
Included among the "1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die", edited by Steven Schneider.
6 of 12 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook   |  Twitter   |  Permalink
According to producer Erich Pommer, Josef von Sternberg wanted Lucie Mannheim as Lola Lola but the producer didn't think she could carry such an expensive production. Also considered were Trude Hesterberg (mistress of author Heinrich Mann) and Brigitte Helm.
1 of 1 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook   |  Twitter   |  Permalink
The first time Professor Rath is approaching in the street to The Blue Angel, a chorus is singing Der treue husar ( 00:19:23 to 00:19:48 )
Is this interesting? Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook   |  Twitter   |  Permalink
Emil Jannings promoted Maly Delschaft for the part of "Lola Lola".
Is this interesting? Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook   |  Twitter   |  Permalink

Spoilers 

The trivia item below may give away important plot points.

When the school caretaker finds Rath slumped over his old desk, the soundtrack ironically begins chiming the melody to Papageno's aria "Ein Mädchen oder Weibchen" from Mozart's "Die Zauberflöte" (The Magic Flute). In the aria, Papageno expresses his desire to find a girlfriend or wife who would bring joy to his life.
9 of 9 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook   |  Twitter   |  Permalink

See also

Goofs | Crazy Credits | Quotes | Alternate Versions | Connections | Soundtracks

Contribute to This Page


Recently Viewed