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The UFA in Brazil: cinemas, entrepreneurs, and audiences
Wolfgang Fuhrmann
Resumo Expandido
(A palestra será realizada em portugues)

Having started 100 years ago, in December 1917, the UFA film company (Universum Film AG) is one of the oldest German film companies in the country and one of the most prestigious in film history. The label Ufa stands as for all time classics such as Fritz Lang‘s METROPLIS (1927) or Murnau‘s FAUST (1926) as for the Nazi propaganda machinery in the Third Reich. However, very little is known about Ufa’s international network. South America, in particular countries like Brazil, Argentina, or Chile, was not only an important destination for German immigrants, but also an important export market for the German film industry. Articles and news from South America in early German film journals often reported about the success of German-born cinema owners and the German film trade in Brazil. Studying the minutes of the UFA’s board of directors also shows that the company was continuously observing the South American market. Ever since the world economy crisis in 1929 South America had become an important sales market for US-American film companies and its biggest European competitor, the German UFA, which did not change with the outbreak of WWII: South America never was a battlefield in the war and Brazil entered it at a very late stage. The paper presents from a German perspective archival findings on Brazil’s role in Ufa’s marketing strategy in South America in the 1920 until the late 1930s. It introduces Ufa’s distribution partners in Brazil, major venues as the UFA palácio in São Paulo and UFA’s expansion plan for Brazil in the 1930s. Last but not least, the paper invites Brazilian film historians to contribute and complement the company’s history in Brazil and to document why UFA, indeed, has to be called an international film company.

Hans-Michael Bock und Michael Töteberg (eds) (1992): Das Ufa-Buch : Kunst und Krisen, Stars und Regisseure, Wirtschaft und Politik : die internationale Geschichte von Deutschlands grösstem Film-Konzern. Frankfurt am Main: Zweitausendeins..

Horst Claus and Anne Jäckel (2000 ): Der Kongress tanzt: UFA's blockbuster Fimoperette for the world market . In: B. Marshall and R. Stilwell (eds), Musicals: Hollywood and beyond. Exeter [etc.] : Intellect, 2000, pp 180-187.

Wolfgang Fuhrmann (2015): The Ufa Universe: German Cinema in Brazil. In: A. Finger, G. Kathöfer, and C. Larkosh (eds), KulturConfusão: On German-Brazilian Interculturalities, New York, Berlin: de Gruyter 2015, pp. 179-197.