Germany: Screen Wars: German National Cinema in the Age of Television

Margit Grieb and Will Lehman

in European Cinemas in the Television Age

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print February 2007 | ISBN: 9780748623082
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780748651122 | DOI:
Germany: Screen Wars: German National Cinema in the Age of Television

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Television in Germany represents an especially interesting case within Europe due to the country's division after 1949 into two sovereign nations, with radically different trajectories concerning the role of the arts. After World War II, developments in television commenced in the Federal Republic of Germany and resulted in the establishment of the first public broadcasting station, the NWDR, in 1952, and two years later, the ARD. In the 1950s and early 1960s, initial attempts to establish a productive relationship between cinema and television were underway and feature films began to be broadcast on TV. However, these cross-media experiments were not well received by critics or the public and were given the derogatory label ‘Pantoffelkino’ (slipper cinema). Furthermore, many within the film industry blamed the dramatic decrease in cinema spectatorship on the emergence of television, tainting the reputation of the latter. It was not until the 1970s that television began to play an important role in the development of a German national cinema.

Keywords: German television; fascism; German national cinema; Germany

Chapter.  7224 words. 

Subjects: Film

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