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Portrait Atze Brauner

Artur Brauner
Born on the 1st August 1918 in Lodz, Poland
Film Producer

“I play chess because at five years of age, I was allowed to play simultaneously at 22 tables in the Grand Hotel in Lodz.”

As his father assured him, Brauner won 18 games, lost two and two ended in a draw. As a reward, Artur was allowed to go with him to the top floor of the Grand Hotel “where I first saw cabaret dancers who – God should not punish me – showed naked navels.”

Since then, chess has not let him go as “I consider it to be the most intelligent game which, thanks to its diversity, never becomes dull. It has also helped me progress in my work. Chess is excellent memory training, for example, I was in a position to remember over 700 telephone numbers – and, on the chess board, I create my own world, just as I do when filming a screenplay.”

As a film producer, Brauner is even more successful than on the chess board. He has been Oscar nominated a few times for his more than 250 productions. The co-production film ‘Die Gärten der Finzi Contini’ won an Oscar, two Golden Globes and countless festival prizes. Brauner has also won the German Critics Prize, the German Film Prize, the Gold band for superb achievements, the Gold and Berlinale Cameras and many other awards. This year, the Berlinale bestowed the ‘Askania Award’ upon him for his life’s work.

At the moment, Brauner is working on two new films and so does not have as much time for chess as he would wish, notwithstanding the fact that he only really plays when he can fully concentrate on and complete the game undisturbed. “During these last few years this has unfortunately only been possible between Christmas and New Year as I am otherwise burdened with problems which distract me and which mean that I have to expect to be defeated in the game. I therefore know, perhaps even before the beginning of the game, whether I will be the winner or the loser.”

We will be curious to see if, during the Chess Olympiad, Brauner will try “to play against the Grand Master Kortschnoi and to win at least once.”