Please activate JavaScript!
Please install Adobe Flash Player, click here for download

uni'alumni 2013_ENG

Modern Fairy Tale Teller The author Christiane Sadlo writes screenplays for romance films under the pen name Inga Lindström PORTRAIT Her women seek happiness, the right man, a fulfilling career. Her men are shipowners, blacksmiths, horse breeders – experienced men who live in red houses on idyllic lakes and make a big mess out of the lives of the female protagonists before the latter finally overcome their doubts and give themselves up to them. Inga Lindström is a master at staging the trials and tribulations her movie characters experience against the picturesque ­natural backdrop of Sweden. But who is the master behind Inga Lindström? Meet Christiane Sadlo: Her day begins early. She takes her dog Gassi for a walk in Berlin Mitte, studies last night’s viewing figures, spends six hours working on her current screenplay or novel, develops projects, conducts research for new stories, gives interviews. In 1972 she moved from her hometown of Ravensburg to study German and English at the University of Freiburg. Her choice had practical as well as roman- tic motivations: Freiburg was a good address for her fields of study – and the guy she was dating at the time lived there. Her years as a student were marked by the student protest movement. Older students still reminisced about “really big demon- strations with water cannons” they had participated in during the 1968 protests. “We discussed politics and the dangers of atomic power day and night in our apartment,” remembers the author. She lived in a room in the attic of a house in the old town, ­“although you could hardly call that hole in the wall a room,” went down to the bakery on the ground floor in her pajamas each morning to buy ­breakfast, worked after classes as a dramatic advisor and ­assistant director at the Freiburg Theater, and wrote articles for newspapers. Strangely Romantic She remembers her studies as a strangely ­romantic time: “After completing my degree, I had the feeling of not being part of real life anymore. I wanted to experience something serious.” In the late 1970s she moved to Munich and began study- ing law. After a couple of semesters one of her teachers wrote at the bottom of her term paper: “‘Correct from a factual standpoint, but too much like a newspaper feature’ – I knew then that I should give up on the idea of launching a career in law.” Saldo found a job at a film production com- pany. She edited German, Italian, and American screenplays, analyzed how the stories worked sen- tence by sentence. She called attention to herself with her talent for dramaturgy. “At one point a ­producer approached me and said: ‘So why don’t you write something yourself now.’” Sadlo has written countless screenplays and concepts for films and television series, but she has achieved her greatest successes so far under the pen name Inga Lindström. German television broadcaster ZDF has shown over 50 films in this series in the past nine years. The 58-year-old ­responds to critics who deride the productions as “kitschy” by stating the facts: The series regularly attracts between five and seven million viewers – solid ratings. She is well aware that she writes happy ending films for a Sunday evening audience. “I am a modern fairy tale teller, but I write about people with real longings. My characters have ­psychological depth.” Christiane Sadlo is currently working on her third novel. It won’t be a light ­romance set in Sweden, but will explore darker fac- ets of the human psyche. Incidentally, ­she ­publishes her books under her real name – “otherwise I would become schizophrenic”. Striking the right note: The protagonists of Christiane Sadlo’s films experience great love stories in idyllic country cottages. In her novels, on the other hand, the author explores darker aspects of the human psyche. Photo: Bothor Rimma Gerenstein Alumni Network uni'alumni 201312