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Bruno Ganz (1941–2019), played Hitler in “Downfall”

Getty Images / Anadolu Agency / Maurizio Gambarini

Swiss actor was a favorite of director Wim Wenders

Bruno Ganz was a Swiss actor known for his portrayal of Hitler in the 2004 Oscar-nominated movie “Downfall.” He was a favorite of director Wim Wenders, appearing as an angel who chooses mortal life after he falls in love with a trapeze performer in 1987’s “Wings of Desire.” and starred opposite Dennis Hopper in Wender’s “The American Friend.” He also appeared in “The Boys from Brazil” and “The Reader.”

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Died: Saturday, February 16, 2019 (Who else died February 16?)

Details of death: Died from colon cancer at the age of 77.


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On his memorable role as an angel in “Wings of Desire”: “People in planes said: ‘Ah, no need to be afraid, because with you here, nothing can happen. Now we are safe.' Or a mother said to her child: ‘Look, there’s your guardian angel.’ They weren’t joking.” —Ganz told the Danish film journal P.O.V.

Tribute: “RIP Bruno Ganz. #WingsOfDesire was the first film i saw as a teen that showed me how art can reach right into the core of your heart.” —Amanda Palmer on Twitter

Full obituary: Washington Post

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