- Birth name:
- Anna Sophie Ondrakova
- Date of Birth:
- 28 February 1902 Tarnów, Galicia, Austria-Hungary [now Poland]
Anny Ondra was a Polish-Czech-Austrian-German-French singer, film and stage actress. As a child she lived in Prague. Her father was an Austro-Hungarian Army Colonel. After the convent school that she visited in Prague she studied to be an actress with Professor Bor. Already as a child and teenager she had big parts throughout the stages of Czechoslovakia, where she was discovered at the age of 16.Then from 1920 mostly under the direction of Carl Lamac she became a big comedian in Czechoslovakian cinema and in 1928 in the German cinema. Furthermore she was Alfred Hitchcock's first 'Blonde' in the English Film Blackmail (1929), which was England's and Hitchcock's first talking film. Knowing that not all theaters supported talkies he also filmed a silent version of the film. In 1930 in Germany she created with the help of Carl Lamac the Ondra-Lamac Film Society, which lasted till 1936. She was in Die vom Rummelplatz (1930) ("Those of the Sideshow") but the film got lost up till this day.She played in German, Cz. and French versions of all her movies always as the leading lady. Because of her talent and her various characters she became an international cinema superstar and one of the most beloved German film stars. All together she made more than 88 movies. She retired from cinema in 1957 and lived in Hollenstedt in der Lüneburger Heide near Hamburg with her husband boxing champion Max Schmeling, whom she married in 1933. She died in Hollenstedt near Hamburg and will never be forgotten by her fans.