Klaus-Peter Thiele

German actor Klaus-Peter Thiele (1940-2011) was well-known for his film debut in the DEFA production Die Abenteuer des Werner Holt/The Adventures of Werner Holt (1965).

Klaus-Peter Thiele
East-German postcard by VEB Progress Film-Vertrieb, Berlin, no. 2399. Photo: Klaus D. Schwarz.

Klaus-Peter Thiele
East-German postcard by VEB Progress Film-Vertrieb, Berlin. no. 2261, 1965. Photo: Klaus D. Schwarz.

The DEFA studio in Babelsberg
Klaus-Peter Thiele was born in 1940 in Meiningen, Germany and grew up there. He was the son of actor, director, and artistic director Heino Thiele, who had acted in the German silent cinema. His mother was Elisabeth Seiberlich.

He graduated from drama school in Berlin-Schöneweide and became a cast member of Landestheater Parchim (1960) and the Hansototheater in Potsdam (1964).

Shortly after, director Joachim Kunert, who had met Thiele in drama school, brought him to the DEFA studio in Babelsberg and put him in the title role of his anti-war film Die Abenteuer des Werner Holt/The Adventures of Werner Holt (1965). The film premiered in 1965 in the GDR and 1966 in the Federal Republic with great success.

Another success was the Eastern Weiße Wölfe/White Wolves (Konrad Petzold, Boško Bošković, 1968) about the last Indian war in the USA after 1879. Historical is the outbreak by the Cheyennes from their reserve. The film is a sequel to Spur des Falken/Trail of the Hawk (Gottfried Kolditz, 1966), both starring Gojko Mitic and Barbara Brylska .

During the following years, Thiele participated in numerous film and TV productions, but he never committed to one single genre. Among his films are the children’s film Susanne und der Zauberring/Susanne and the Magic Ring (Erwin Stranka, 1973), the thriller Die Kolonie/The Colony (Horst E. Brandt, 1981), and the fairy tale film Der Bärenhäuter/The Bear (Walter Beck, 1985).

Klaus-Peter Thiele
East-German postcard by VEB Progress Film-Vertrieb, Berlin, no. 2118. Photo: Klaus Fischer.

Klaus-Peter Thiele
East-German postcard by VEB Progress Film-Vertrieb, Berlin, no. 2943. Photo: Klaus Fischer.

Klaus-Peter Thiele
East-German postcard by VEB Progress Film-Vertrieb, Berlin, no. 46/71, 1971. Photo: Linke.

Archives of Death
Unfortunately, Klaus-Peter Thiele was not able to repeat the success of his debut film although he remained an ensemble member of the DEFA and appeared in more than 80 film and television productions. Thus, he frequently had to settle for minor roles.

He often was cast for roles of Nazi characters, for instance in two TV series, directed by Rudi Kurz, Archiv des Todes/Archives of Death (1980) and Front ohne Gnade/Front without Mercy (1984). Both deal with the topic of the fight against fascism during the Nazi regime and both blend contemporary history with a fictional plot.

He also appeared in several Polish films including Pobeda (Evgeniy Matveev, 1985) and Romans z intruzem (Waldemar Podgórski, 1985).

After the Wende (the German reunification) in 1989, Thiele mainly worked at theatres, at first in Hamburg and Munich, later as cast member of the Störtebeker festival in Ralswiek. Volker Wachter at the site Filmstadt Quedlinburg praises the warm and deep voice of the talented actor.

Thiele often appeared on television and was on camera for several TV movies and series, including the popular Krimi series as Polizeiruf 110 (1990, 1997) and Tatort (2002) and the Italian TV film Detective Extralarge: Operazione Condor/Extralarge: Condor Mission (Alessandro Capone, 1993) with Bud Spencer .

In 2011, Klaus-Peter Thiele passed in Berlin away at the age of 70. Thiele lived together with his long-time partner, the painter Rosemarie Rautenberg. Their daughter Valeska Rautenberg, born 1979, also works as an actress and singer.

Klaus-Peter Thiele
East-German postcard by VEB Progress Film-Vertrieb, Berlin, no. 2755, 1967. Photo: Klaus D. Schwarz.

Klaus-Peter Thiele
Big East-German card by VEB Progress Film-Vertrieb, Berlin, no. 48/70. Photo: Klaus Fischer.

Klaus-Peter Thiele
East-German card by VEB Progress Film-Vertrieb, Berlin, no. 142/71. Photo: Günter Linke.

Sources: Volker Wachter (Filmstadt Quedlinburg - German), Filmportal.de, Wikipedia (German) and .
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Published on August 22, 2017 22:00
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