At some stage in their career, many actors decide to try their hand at directing. Often the reasoning behind this move is that as actors, they get to share their own vision with film audiences instead of having to be the tools to portray what someone else thinks. One actor who has made the move and is now better known as a director is Ulli Lommel.
The German acting stars Karla van Cleef and Ludwig Manfred Hommel had their son Ulli in December 1944. This was five weeks before their town fell to the Red Army and became part of Poland. The boy grew up in West Germany, however, and first performed on stage at the age of four.
After a clash with his father about wanting to become an actor too, sixteen-year-old Ulli ran away from home. His relationship with his father never recovered. However, he followed his dream and worked with Rainer Werner Fassbinder, who at that stage was mainly a theater director. When Fassbinder started directing and producing movies, he gave the young actor parts in many of these and also let him work behind the scenes as production designer, producer and assistant director.
Ulli finally made his debut as director in 1971, with a movie called 'Haytabo'. He continued working with Fassbinder, who produced some of his films. Fassbinder even had small parts in some of these movies, including 'Haytabo'.
The film widely regarded as the director's masterpiece is his third movie, 'The Tenderness of Wolves', which he directed in 1973. It tells the story of a re...