Gustav von Seyffertitz

Last updated

Gustav von Seyffertitz
Gustav Von Seyffertitz, silent film actor (SAYRE 10699).jpg
Seyffertitz in 1922
Gustav Carl Viktor Bodo Maria von Seyffertitz

(1862-08-04)4 August 1862
Died25 December 1943(1943-12-25) (aged 81)
Los Angeles, California, United States
Years activeca. 1880–1939
Spouse(s)Katharina Hoffmann (1886)
Toni Creutzburg (1894)
Eugenie von Mink
Nelly Thorne [1]
ChildrenWilhelm (1882)
Joan Goodridge

Gustav von Seyffertitz (4 August 1862 – 25 December 1943) was a German film actor and director. He settled in the United States. He was born in Haimhausen, Bavaria and died in Los Angeles, California, aged 81.



Gustav von Seyffertitz was born into an aristocratic family as the son of Guido Freiherr von Seyffertitz and his wife Anna Gräfin von Butler Clonebough zu Haimhausen. His family expected him to start a military career, but was shocked when he said that he wanted to be an actor. He was a member of the Meiningen Court Theatre and also appeared in operas. He emigrated to the United States in 1896, after being asked by the Austrian-American theatre director Heinrich Conried. Despite his thick German accent, he was successful on Broadway where he worked as a stage actor and director during the 1900s and 1910s. He appeared as an actor in such lavish productions as The Brass Bottle in 1910. This play was turned into several films and was the idea for the television show I Dream of Jeannie in the 1960s. [2] He made his film debut in 1917, appearing with Douglas Fairbanks in Down to Earth .

Seyffertitz in Mystery Liner (1934) Gustav von Seyffertitz in Mystery Liner.jpg
Seyffertitz in Mystery Liner (1934)

In his films, the dignified-looking Seyffertitz often played the "very embodiment of the Hideous Hun - America's notion of the merciless, atrocity-happy German military officer". [3] One of his most successful film roles was Professor Moriarty in 1922's Sherlock Holmes with John Barrymore. He also played the antagonist to Mary Pickford in Sparrows (1926) and appeared as Ramon Novarro's uncle, the king of a small German state, in Ernst Lubitsch's The Student Prince in Old Heidelberg (1927). He continued his career into the sound film and portrayed supporting roles in the Josef von Sternberg-Marlene Dietrich films Dishonored (1931) and Shanghai Express (1932). Among his later film roles was a parody on Sigmund Freud in Frank Capra's film classic Mr. Deeds Goes to Town (1936). He appeared in 118 films between 1917 and 1939.

Seyffertitz was married five times and had numerous children. [4]


As actor

As director

Related Research Articles

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Victor Varconi</span> Hungarian-American actor (1891-1976)

Victor Varconi was a Hungarian actor who initially found success in his native country, as well as in Germany and Austria, in silent films, before relocating to the United States, where he continued to appear in films throughout the sound era. He also appeared in British and Italian films.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Tully Marshall</span> American actor (1864–1943)

Tully Marshall was an American character actor. He had nearly a quarter century of theatrical experience before his debut film appearance in 1914 which led to a film career spanning almost three decades.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Arthur Hoyt</span> American actor (1874–1953)

Arthur Hoyt was an American film character actor who appeared in more than 275 films in his 34-year film career, about a third of them silent films.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Roy William Neill</span> Film director

Roy William Neill was an Irish-born American film director best known for directing the last eleven of the fourteen Sherlock Holmes films starring Basil Rathbone and Nigel Bruce, made between 1943 and 1946 and released by Universal Studios.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Henry Victor</span> English character actor (1892–1945)

Henry Victor was an English-born character actor who had his highest profile in the film silent era, he appeared in numerous film roles in Britain, before emigrating to the US in 1939 where he continued his career.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Carl de Vogt</span> German actor

Carl de Vogt was a German film actor who starred in four of Fritz Lang's early films. He attended the acting school in Cologne, Germany. Together with acting he was also active as a singer and recorded several discs. His greatest hit was "Der Fremdenlegionär". An extremely successful actor in his early career, he died in relative obscurity in 1970.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Lucien Littlefield</span> American actor (1895–1960)

Lucien Littlefield was an American actor who achieved a long career from silent films to the television era. He was noted for his versatility, playing a wide range of roles and already portraying old men before he was of voting age.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Theodor Loos</span> German actor (1883–1954)

Theodor August Konrad Loos was a German actor.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Theodore von Eltz</span> American actor

Theodore von Eltz was an American film actor, appearing in more than 200 films between 1915 and 1957. He was the father of actress Lori March.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Edward Hearn (actor)</span> American actor

Guy Edward Hearn, more usually known as Edward Hearn, was an American actor who, in a forty-year film career, starting in 1915, played hundreds of roles, starting with juvenile leads, then, briefly, as leading man, all during the silent era.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Paul Weigel</span> American actor

Paul Weigel was a German-American actor. He appeared in more than 110 films between 1916 and 1945.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Richard Tucker (actor)</span> American actor (1884–1942)

Richard Tucker was an American actor. Tucker was born in Brooklyn, New York. Appearing in more than 260 films between 1911 and 1940, he was the first official member of the Screen Actors Guild (SAG) and a founding member of SAG's Board of Directors. Tucker died in Woodland Hills, Los Angeles from a heart attack. He is interred at Forest Lawn Memorial Park, in an unmarked niche in Great Mausoleum, Columbarium of Faith.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">John St. Polis</span> American actor (1873–1946)

John M. St. Polis was an American actor.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">George Irving (American actor)</span> American actor

George Henry Irving was an American film actor and director.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Walter McGrail</span> American actor

Walter B. McGrail was an American film actor. He appeared in more than 150 films between 1916 and 1951. Besides feature films, he appeared in The Scarlet Runner, a 12-chapter serial.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Crauford Kent</span> English actor (1881–1953)

Crauford Kent was an English character actor based in the United States. He has also been credited as Craufurd Kent and Crawford Kent.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Reinhold Schünzel</span> German actor and director (1888–1954)

Reinhold Schünzel was a German actor and director, active in both Germany and the United States. The son of a German father and a Jewish mother, he was born in St. Pauli, the poorest part of Hamburg. Despite being of Jewish ancestry, Schünzel was allowed by the Nazis to continue making films for several years until he eventually left in 1937 to live abroad.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Karl Platen</span> German actor

Karl Platen was a German actor and cinematographer known for Girl in the Moon (1929) and M (1931).

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Curt Courant</span> German cinematographer

Curt Courant was a German cinematographer who worked on over a hundred films during the silent and early sound eras. Courant worked in several European countries, collaborating with figures such as Alfred Hitchcock and Fritz Lang. As he was of Jewish ancestry, Courant was forced to leave Germany in 1933 and go into exile following the Nazi takeover of power. Courant worked at several of the leading British studios during the mid-1930s. He is the uncle of Willy Kurant who also became a cinematographer.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Bruno Ziener</span> German actor

Bruno Ziener was a German stage and film actor and director. He appeared in over 100 films between 1913 and 1941. He also directed 28 silent films such as The Flight into Death (1921).


  1. "Gustav von Seyffertitz, The true Hollywood Artistocrat". Retrieved 15 June 2019.
  2. "Gustav von Seyffertitz at Internet Broadway Database". IBDb. 27 April 2012. Retrieved 27 April 2012.
  3. "Gustav von Seyffertitz, Rotten Tomatoes" . Retrieved 15 June 2019.
  4. "Gustav von Seyffertitz, The true Hollywood Artistocrat". Retrieved 15 June 2019.