The Wagner Files

90' or 52' / HD

“The Wagner Files” is an innovative and dynamic fusion of music documentary, fictional film and animated cartoon. It critically introduces the life and musical creativity of one of the most famous - and arguably most controversial - German composers in a way that has never been done before.

High quality, thought-provoking fictional scenes trace the complex and scandalous relationship between Richard Wagner (Samuel Finzi) and his second wife Cosima (Pegah Ferydoni). The scenes are shot in a modern setting, orchestrated with, and impassioned by, Wagner’s music, referring to classical Hollywood melodramas as direct successors of Wagner’s “Gesamtkunstwerk”.

Each chapter of the documentary is inspired by modern crime drama series. The story lines are examined in a modern investigation room where interviews with world renowned Wagner experts are conducted, including Simone Young (conductor and music director of the Hamburg State Opera), Philippe Jordan (conductor and music director of the Paris Opera), Katharina Wagner (great-grandchild of Richard Wagner and director of the Bayreuth Festival) and Laurence Dreyfus (Professor of music at Magdalen College, Oxford).

Marking the anniversary of Wagner’s 200th birthday in 2013, the film explores the visionary opus and arguable spirit of Richard Wagner, rediscovering the composer anew for a wide and varied audience.

In addition to the film, the Wagner story is a cross media event told through different media: The “Wagner-App” for smartphones and tablet computer will provide additional material such as animations, mini-games, extracts of the film, texts and music which are integrated into the storyline to offer an immersive and sophisticated user-experience. Furthermore, the Knesebeck Publishing House will release the graphic novel of Richard Wagner in time for Wagner’s anniversary in May 2013.





Producer: Gebrüder Beetz Filmproduktion
Production year: 2013
Broadcasters: SWR, arte
Languages: English, German
Photography: Falco Seliger