Gustav von Seyffertitz

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Gustav von Seyffertitz
Gustav von Seyffertitz in Mystery Liner.jpg
von Seyffertitz in Mystery Liner (1934)
Born Gustav Carl Viktor Bodo Maria von Seyffertitz
(1862-08-04)4 August 1862
Haimhausen, Kingdom of Bavaria, German Empire
Died 25 December 1943(1943-12-25) (aged 81)
Los Angeles, California, United States
Occupation Actor
Years active ca. 1880–1939

Gustav von Seyffertitz (4 August 1862 – 25 December 1943) was a German film actor and director. He settled in the United States. He was born in Haimhausen, Bavaria and died in Los Angeles, California, aged 81.

Biography[edit]

Gustav von Seyffertitz was born into an aristrocratic family as the son of Guido Freiherr von Seyffertitz and his wife Anna Gräfin von Butler Clonebough zu Haimhausen. His family expected him to start a military career, but was shocked when he said that he wanted to be an actor. He was a member of the Meiningen Court Theatre and also appeared in operas. He emigrated to the United States in 1896, after being asked by the Austrian-American theatre director Heinrich Conried. Despite his thick Austrian accent, he was a successful on Broadway where he worked as a stage actor and director during the 1900s and 1910s. He appeared as an actor in such lavish productions as The Brass Bottle in 1910. This play was turned into several films and was the idea for the television show I Dream of Jeannie in the 1960s.[1] He made his film debut in 1917, appearing with Douglas Fairbanks in Down to Earth.

In his films, the dignified-looking Gustav von Seyffertitz often played the "very embodiment of the Hideous Hun - America's notion of the merciless, atrocity-happy German military officer".[2] One of his most successful film roles was Professor Moriarty in 1922's Sherlock Holmes with John Barrymore. He also played the antogonist to Mary Pickford in Sparrows (1926) and appeared as Ramon Novarro's uncle in Ernst Lubitsch's The Student Prince in Old Heidelberg (1927). He continued his career into the sound film and portrayed supporting roles in the Josef von Sternberg-Marlene Dietrich films Dishonored (1931) and Shanghai Express (1932). He appeared in 118 films between 1917 and 1939.

Gustav von Seyffertitz was married five times and had numerous children.[3]

Selected filmography[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]