Talk:Rainer Werner Fassbinder

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Former good article Rainer Werner Fassbinder was one of the Media and drama good articles, but it has been removed from the list. There are suggestions below for improving the article to meet the good article criteria. Once these issues have been addressed, the article can be renominated. Editors may also seek a reassessment of the decision if they believe there was a mistake.
Article milestones
Date Process Result
February 16, 2008 Good article nominee Listed
June 4, 2009 Good article reassessment Delisted
Did You Know A fact from this article appeared on Wikipedia's Main Page in the "Did you know?" column on October 31, 2007.
Current status: Delisted good article

No topic[edit]

I removed the word gay from the biography because I find it relatively insignificant in such a short biography, especially in the first few sentences.

Also there is the question of whether or not Fassbinder was gay or not. He surely had relationships with men, both sexual and romantic. But he also had romantic relationships with women, including his last relationship. It would be perfectly appropriate to mention his sexuality in the context of a longer and more detailed biography of his life. But to simply label him a gay German director in the opening sentences of this short text is not neccesary.


Need it be an either/or question?

An openly gay man who made films with explicitly gay content -- certainly as significant a part of his biography as "German" and probably moreso. What motivates a person to actively remove a fact that at least some people find significant enough to include?--Kstern999 04:24, 12 August 2006 (UTC)


The film "Why Does Herr R. Run Amok?" was not directed by Fassbinder, though it is oftern still credited to him. It was actually his assistant who directed the film. See, e.g.,,sontag,42133,20.html

This page article should be updated to note that. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talkcontribs) 03:45, September 19, 2005 (UTC)

That run-on sentence in para four needs to be restructured. Will take a whack at it when I have a moment. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talkcontribs) 02:44, October 18, 2005 (UTC)

Who's plagiarizing who?[edit]

A few sentences in in this article seem to be lifted, without attribution, straight from the first article that comes up when you google RWF... or vice versa. Somebody's plagiarized somebody else. I can't think of an easy way to figure out which was written first.

Michael Wells 05:22, 8 November 2005 (UTC)

Interesting comment by Hanna Schygulla about "Why Does Herr R. Run Amok?" not having been directed by him. I hope that the same is true of "Die Niklashauser Fahrt" which was clearly improvised and, worse, not very good. Any evidence of this? Any others? I've wondered (since the 1970s): how could one man direct 10 films in one year, as well as write them, act in some of them, produce plays etc? Even a genius like RWF. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talkcontribs) 00:19, December 15, 2005 (UTC)

Tons of cocaine, basically. Deleuze 07:23, 28 April 2006 (UTC)

Drug overdose?[edit]

Just wondering if anybody knows which particular drug he overdosed on. The blanket term "drug overdose" is too vague. It usually means heroin, but does anyone actually know? I don't want to edit with a guess. - Lontano 11:56, 21 February 2007 (UTC)

Good old Google. Found it. - Lontano 12:49, 23 February 2007 (UTC)

WEAK BIO[edit]

I don't think that the bio does justice to the complexity of Fassbinder's life--

1) What about his theater career (and subsequent technical training), an important factor in how he was able to make/finance so many films in so little time....

2) More should be said about his work ethic and in particular his violent temper (a reference to the self-deprecation in Beware of a Holy Whore may be appropriate).

3) There is no mention of his marriages.

4) Also I agree with the earlier poster in that describing Fassbinder as gay is not sufficient. Did he even describe himself as gay? Perhaps the term 'queer' would be more accurate. An entire section in the article could possibly be devoted to this, and citations would be helpful. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 10:13, 9 September 2007 (UTC)

Writing Fassbinder's article[edit]

Rather than try to improve the previous entry I wrote a new article from scratch. In fact, I kept very little from the former entry. It was, as mention here, a weak biography. I think I have made a good job. Fassbinder's life was as interesting as any of his films.

Miguelemejia (talkcontribs) 00:35, 26 October 2007

  • I just wanted to comment that this is a very well-written article and I hope it gets promoted to good article status. I once took a film class on the "Films of Fassbinder". I am adding this article to my watchlist to participate in improvement of the article. Deatonjr (talk) 20:20, 16 February 2008 (UTC)
  • Getting this article up to FA would be a good goal. Miguel has done a great job with this article. I don't think we need to do much to get it there. Bartleby (talk) 03:21, 17 February 2008 (UTC)

Revert due to multiple copyright violations[edit]

I had to remove the following text from the subsection on Querelle because it was a copyright violation from pages 131-136 of the book Movies of the 80s by Jürgen Müller and Herbert Klemens:

For Querelle, love and affections can only be expressed as violent destruction and subjugation.


Unlike his other films, Querelle is entirely lacking in any contemporary or historical period references. The tone of the film is lyrical, with its slow pan camera, and the theatrical quality of the story is intensified by the films’s enclosed setting. In Querelle Fassbinder created an intimate cosmos entirely determined by male desire; and even while paying tribute to it, he shows how it is doomed to end in shipwreck.

Unfortunately, since this copyright violation was committed by the user who said he rewrote this article from scratch that means that this article is probably filled with such copyvios. -- (talk) 13:16, 10 May 2009 (UTC)

Here's another one:

His story unfolds in a surreal, phallic setting, the backdrop is a kind of permanent orange sunset, with an architectural landscape of vague alleys, parts of ships, and huge phallic columns overshadowing the action. Fassbinder exploits the sexual and criminal tensions in this enclosed space, particularly in scenes involving title character, a thief, prostitute, and serial killer.

which is taken from . -- (talk) 14:15, 10 May 2009 (UTC)

All right, here's a third. The source is Fassbinder's Germany by Thomas Elsaesser and here's just a small sample of what was taken from this source:

In 1967, Fassbinder joined the Munich action-theater and in two months became the company's leader. He directed, acted in, and adapted anti-establishment plays for a tightly knit group of young actors, among them Peer Raben, Harry Baer and Kurt Raab, who along with Hanna Schygulla and Irm Hermann, became the most important members of his cinematic stock company. In April 1968 Fassbinder premiered directed the first play written by himself: Katzelmacher, a twenty-minute highly choreographed encounter between Bavarian villagers and a foreign worker from Greece, who with scarcely a word of German, becomes the object of intense racial, sexual, and political hatred among the men, while exerting a strangely troubling fascination on the women. A few weeks later, in May 1968, the Action Theater was disbanded after its theater was wrecked by one of its founders, jealous of Fassbinder's growing power within the group. It promptly reformed under Fassbinder's command as the Anti-Theater (antiteater).

There's no reason to think that anything Miguelemejia put in this article in his "rewrite from scratch" was not a copyright violation and I have no choice but to revert it to the version before his rewrite. -- (talk) 14:31, 10 May 2009 (UTC)

To delete more of one year not only of my contributions , but the work of many other editors on this article is very arbitrary. Yes some citations still need to be added, but this is a work in progress and the complexity of putting a long and comprehensive article on a subject like Fassbinder's life and work are the reasons that not every attribution has been pointed out. Any mistake in omitting the right citation has been unintentional. Ultimately every article by the very nature of Wikipedia is a work in progress and we are here to improve them and work in good faith towards the editors--Miguelemejia (talk) 21:50, 10 May 2009 (UTC)
"To delete more of one year not only of my contributions , but the work of many other editors on this article is very arbitrary." If there were any editors who -- unlike you -- contributed their own work, that work can certainly be added back in. It cannot, however, be regarded as a reason to restore the illegal plagiarism which you falsely claimed to be your own work. The mistake is not in "omitting the right citation" -- or, to be more accurate in describing your supposed "rewrite from scratch", omitting all citations -- it is copying large amounts of text word-for-word from other sources without permission. If I were to "assume good faith" in this matter and assume that your illegal copying and pasting was due to ignorance of both the law and of Wikipedia's policies, it still would not make your plagiarism acceptable to stay on Wikipedia. Do not revert the article back to your plagiaristic "rewrite" again. -- (talk) 03:22, 11 May 2009 (UTC)
Miguelemejia, these are very serious concerns. The passages the IP editor has alluded to show that some of the article's text was in fact plagiarized word for word or slightly modified from other texts. If you in fact do plan to continue working on this article, I ask that you read WP:COPYRIGHT and make sure your future edits are not in violation of international copyright laws. I will also be looking at your other articles for plagiarism, as well. Nishkid64 (Make articles, not wikidrama) 16:24, 14 May 2009 (UTC)

GA Reassessment[edit]

This discussion is transcluded from Talk:Rainer Werner Fassbinder/GA1. The edit link for this section can be used to add comments to the reassessment.

As large parts of the text have been deleted due to a copyvio the article does not satisfy the GA criterion 3, broad in coverage anymore. Large and importants of Fassbinders life are missing. There is for example no discussion at all of his early career, and no discussion at all of at least his most important film projects. There are also no inline references at all, thus also failing criterion 2, Factually accurate and verifiable. Stepopen (talk) 18:47, 4 June 2009 (UTC)

Alcohol related death category?[edit]

I see that was just added. Is that appropriate per the article? TIA --Tom (talk) 19:44, 3 March 2010 (UTC)

Welt am Draht[edit]

Cassell's German Dictionary's[1] entry for ‘am’ states:

am ( = an dem) see an.

The word ‘dem’ is the dative masculine and neutral singular definite article, i.e. ‘the’ in English and ‘an’ means ‘on’, ‘at’, ‘by’ or (lying or leaning) ‘against’, so the title should be translated as ‘World on a Wire’ or ‘World on the Wire’. Of these, the latter is more literal, but I prefer the former, as it conveys the sense more naturally.

I saw this film on German Television in the summer of 1976. It made a deep impression on me and I've only ever met two other people who saw it. We all agree that the film's realities within realities also anticipates ‘The Matrix’ in its pretext that the hero is not living in the ‘real’ world, but rather a simulation of it. See the Welt am Draht page for a synopsis. --NickPretzel (talk) 04:09, 11 July 2011 (UTC)


  1. ^ Betteridge, Harold T. (1987). Cassell's German Dictionary. Cassell Publishers Limited. p. 28. ISBN 0 304 52292 9. 


It was towards his death that his real age was revealed confronting his passport.

What does this mean? I can't make sense out of the word "confronting". -- Jack of Oz [Talk] 23:04, 19 February 2013 (UTC)

Sexual orientation[edit]

Maybe it's me, but it's confusing to me that he repeatedly identified himself as homosexual but he also had sexual relationships with women. In the categories (bottom of the page), he's listed as bisexual which, I guess, is technically correct in that he had sex with women and men. But how does that jive with being self-identified as gay? We have no way of knowing but I wonder whether he would reject the label "bisexual".

It's interesting because it's more often the case that there are men (and, less frequently, women) who are bisexual but self-identify as straight, denying their same-sex relationships. This is the first instance I know of of a bisexual man who self-identifies as gay, as if denying his sexual relationships with women.

I'm posting this on the Talk page because I wonder if the topic comes up in any Fassbinder biographies. Or could it be that he just liked to be contradictory and confuse people? (talk) 17:47, 21 July 2013 (UTC)


The descriptions of many, if not all, of the films listed in the film career section contain some major spoilers, not needed for a short synopsis of them. Are these allowed, or is it ok to remove them? (talk) 05:58, 13 July 2014 (UTC)

Please see the guideline at Wikipedia:Spoiler. Wikipedia does not remove spoilers. Binksternet (talk) 15:14, 13 July 2014 (UTC)


Article says "In compliance with his mother's wishes, Fassbinder later claimed he was born in 1946 in order to enhance his status as a cinematic prodigy". Can someone clarify this, and provide evidence? Claiming he was a year younger seems more like simple vanity, I don't see how it affects his status as a film-maker. Gymnophoria (talk) 19:24, 28 January 2016 (UTC)