Wolfgang Petersen

Wolfgang Petersen


3/14/1941, Emden, Lower Saxony, Germany

Birth Name



Also Known As

Wolfgang Peterson
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Wolfgang Petersen has a a son, director Daniel Petersen with ex-wife Ursula Sieg. Wolfgang met his wife Ursula Sieg, during the shooting of Smog (1973) (TV), where she worked as a script girl. He attended the Film and Television Academy in Berlin (DFFB) from 1966 to 1970.


Trivia and Quotes

  • Trivia

  • Quotes

    • Wolfgang Petersen: There's nothing German, or even particularly European about my films.

    • Wolfgang Petersen: In reality, I think there aren't really such things as "bad guys" and "good guys." But it is unusual -- because movies usually tend to go more for the black-and-white situations.

    • Wolfgang Petersen: There is an art to casting. And I hope we will see more ensemble films. I don't like star-led films, it's much better to have more stars in one film so that the audience can see them working together.

    • Wolfgang Petersen: I think we should be very concerned about what's happening to our world and what nature is capable of doing.

    • Wolfgang Petersen: (on his being intrigued by water) Yeah, the sea has it all-mystery, danger, beauty, and power. It can be a raging monster one moment and the most beautifully tranquil, color-saturated thing the next.

    • Wolfgang Petersen: As a rule, [as a teen-ager in Germany] I went to the movies twice a week and also to the Sunday matinée.

    • Wolfgang Petersen: I like to tell big stories, but I don't like those that are too simple, too predictable. I like characters that aren't stereotypes and one-dimensional, and correspond to the reality of our increasingly complex world.

    • Wolfgang Petersen: In Poseidon, I try to make every single scene hit you in the stomach, playing with all the basic primal fears people have-of heights, of suffocating, of walls and water closing in.

    • Wolfgang Petersen: We have Batman and Superman in ourselves. We like Batman – we understand him, we suffer with him. On the other hand, we want to be Superman. But they're conflicting philosophies.

    • Wolfgang Petersen: (of the final ballroom scene in "Poseidon") The whole thing was just smashed to pieces; the boyish fun was making everything kaput. I really enjoyed that.

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