31 May 1916|
|Died||23 October 1997
|Occupation||Photographer, cameraman, film director|
|Years active||1948–1988 (film director)|
|Children||Rimko and Jurre|
Haanstra was born in the town of Holten and became a professional Dutch documentary film maker in 1947. He won international acclaim with his short documentary Spiegel van Holland / Mirror of Holland, for which he received the Grand Prix du court métrage at the Cannes-festival of 1951. During the fifties he made six films for Shell, among others The Rival World (1955) on insects spreading deadly diseases and how to fight them. In 1958 his documentary Glass, a filming improvisation made in a glass factory, won an Academy Award for Best Documentary Short Subject.
He directed several fiction films. Fanfare, a comedy situated in a small Dutch village, is still the Netherlands' second most popular film ever (measured at the box office), only surpassed by Paul Verhoevens Turkish Delight. Abroad however, Fanfare was hardly noticed, but it was entered into the 1959 Cannes Film Festival and the 1st Moscow International Film Festival.
In several shorts and in long documentaries like Alleman / The Human Dutch and Stem van het water / The Voice of the Water Haansta reflected on The Netherlands and its inhabitants. All these films made him one of the most popular filmmakers in the history of Dutch cinema. The documentary Alleman was seen in the cinema by 20 percent of the total Dutch population. In the seventies and eighties Haanstra addressed a new subject. He made several films about animals. In the long documentary Bij de beesten af / Ape and Super-Ape (1973), for which he collaborated with Frans de Waal and Jane Goodall, among others, he compared the behavior of animals and human beings. In total Haanstra received close to a hundred awards. He died in the town of Hilversum.
Haanstra was Officer in the Order of Orange-Nassau.
- De Muiderkring Herleeft (1948)
- Mirror of Holland (1950)
- Nederlandse Beeldhouwkunst tijdens de late Middeleeuwen (1951)
- Panta Rhei (1951)
- Dijkbouw (1952)
- Ontstaan en Vergaan (1954)
- De Opsporing van Aardolie (1954)
- De Verkenningsboring (1954)
- The Rival World (1955)
- En de zee was niet meer (1955)
- God Shiva (1955)
- Rembrandt, schilder van de mens (1957)
- Over glas gesproken (1958)
- Glass (1958)
- Fanfare (1958)
- The Manneken Pis Case (1960)
- Delta Phase I (1962)
- Zoo (1962)
- Lewis Mumford on the City, Part 2: The City - Cars or People? (1963)
- Alleman (The Human Dutch / 1963)
- The Voice of the Water (1966)
- Evoluon (1967)
- Return Ticket to Madrid (1967)
- Ape and Super-Ape (1972)
- Doctor Pulder Sows Poppies (1975)
- Nationale Parken... Noodzaak (1978)
- Mr. Slotter's Jubilee (1979)
- Nederland (1983)
- Vroeger kon je lachen (1983)
- The Family of Chimps (1984)
- Kinderen van Ghana (1988)
- Jo Daems, Teder testament, de films van Bert Haanstra (1996)
- Hans Schoots, Bert Haanstra - Filmer van Nederland (2009)
- "The 32nd Academy Awards (1960) Nominees and Winners". oscars.org. Archived from the original on 6 July 2011. Retrieved 2011-08-21.
- "New York Times: Glass". NY Times. Retrieved 2008-05-26.
- "Festival de Cannes: Fanfare". festival-cannes.com. Retrieved 2009-02-14.
- "1st Moscow International Film Festival (1959)". MIFF. Retrieved 2012-10-27.
- (Dutch) Bert Haanstra (official website)
- (Dutch) Bert Haanstra Compleet (DVD)
-  (website of Haanstra biographer Hans Schoots)
- Bert Haanstra at the Internet Movie Database
- Bert Haanstra at AllMovie