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Conrad Veidt

From Academic Kids

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Conrad Veidt in The Spy in Black (1939).

Conrad Veidt (January 22 1893April 3 1943) was a German actor, well known for his roles in such films as The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari (1920) and Casablanca (1942).

He was born Hans Walter Conrad Weidt in Potsdam, Germany. In the 27 years between 1916 and his death, he managed to act in well over 100 movies, some of them classics. His starring role in The Man Who Laughs (1928) was the inspiration for Batman's greatest enemy, The Joker. Veidt appeared in Das Land ohne Frauen (1929), Germany's first talking picture.

Veidt was known to have anti-Nazi beliefs, and he fled Germany in 1933 with his life in danger. Settling in Britain he continued making films, notably three with director Michael Powell: The Spy in Black (1939), Contraband (1940) and The Thief of Bagdad (1940). He later moved to Hollywood, and starred as the Nazi Major Heinrich Strasser in Casablanca (1942). He died of a heart attack a year later, while playing golf in Los Angeles.

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