The originally Danish Rialto Film company was founded in 1897 by Constantin Philipsen (1859–1925) in Copenhagen. In 1950 his son Preben Philipsen (1910–2005) established the Constantin Film distribution at Frankfurt, named after his father, together with his associate Waldfried Barthel (1913–1979). After Philipsen exited Constantin Film in 1955, he again turned to his father's film business in both Scandianvia and Germany. On 18 August 1960, he established Rialto Film GmbH at Frankfurt as a German subsidiary.
Little is known about Rialto's productions prior to 1950. The company became internationally famous after the production of the 1959 film Der Frosch mit der Maske, followed by the release of further 32 films based on the works of Edgar Wallace, as well as 9 films based on the works of Karl May under director Harald Reinl and, from 1960, co-owner Horst Wendlandt. As was the practice of mainstream and successful European cinema, most of the films were international co-productions. Wendtandt was succeeded in 1992 by his son Matthias as general director.
- Rialto Film GmbH, Berlin - Die Welt des Kinos...von Edgar Wallace bis Loriot...von Otto Waalkes bis Winnetou
- Hake, Sabine German National Cinema p. 153 Routledge 2001
- Bergfelder, Tim International Adventures: German Popular Cinema and European Co-Production 2006 Berghahn Books
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