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margarita broich: how she became anna janneke at the "crime scene"

Posted by forbes at 2020-02-16
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SPIEGEL ONLINE: Mrs. Broich, before your acting career you were a professional photographer. The crime scene commissioner Anna Janneke, who you've been playing since 2015, always has a camera with her. Was this your idea?

Broich: Yes. I thought guns weren't really my thing, so I'd rather take pictures.

SPIEGEL ONLINE: As an actress, do you have any influence on the development of the character?

Broich: Before our first "crime scene" the figures were developed together with the editorial staff. Anna Janneke should be a bit chewy and agile. Often TV commissioners are not in such a good mood, sometimes rather grumpy. I wanted to try something else. Good mood as an investigative tactic, so to speak. But every new script has to meet many requirements, of course some ideas remain on track.

SPIEGEL ONLINE: For example?

My wife Janneke had a son in the first episode. He was with a backpack, girlfriend and baby- Grandma is Janneke too! -on our way to Australia, and we chipped together. He never showed up after that. Recently, I happened to meet the young fellow Member in Berlin and asked him where he had actually stayed." I guess I disappeared in the script,"was his answer.

SPIEGEL ONLINE: You worked as a theater photographer before becoming an actress. How did this change happen?

Broich: I was sometimes so enchanted by what happened on stage that I forgot to press the trigger. Theater work is a team sport. Photographers work alone. I'm sure that was a reason to switch sides.

But that wasn't the only reason, was it?

Broich: No. Above all, it was love. Many years later I had a photo exhibition with large-format excerpts of Otto Sander, Martin Wuttke, Sophie Rois and other colleagues. I looked at my photos from a distance and fell in love formally a second time in acting.

SPIEGEL ONLINE: What inspired you?

Broich: The portraits were of a delicacy and vulnerability that I had not noticed before. All recordings were made just minutes after the performance ended. The makeup was slippery, the ears were red, the eyes tired and yet full of adrenaline, not an imagination. So no glamour, but what a great job, what wonderful people. In the minutes after the performance, actors are in a strange state of suspended animation, between the role and themselves. A rather lonely moment. My pictures are taken from inside the theater. My two professions, acting and photography, have shaken hands.

SPIEGEL ONLINE: In the meantime, you are more often in front of the camera than behind the camera or on stage. Does a turn sound like a stage entrance?

Broich: Theater actress or film actress, it seems to me like two different professions. Theater is much more physical. It's Berserker work, strenuous, martial. I was desperate from time to time.

SPIEGEL ONLINE: Why?

Broich: I've always enjoyed playing, but the rehearsals were often crowded. When you take a picture and it's criticized, you talk about one thing. On stage, I myself am the object that is circulated. Sometimes I felt personally attacked and then I doubted in principle. This has not made working for the director, nor for me, any easier. The sound in the theatre is often very rough. You have to work and always, even with fever, at Christmas, Easter, New Year's. The great theatrical directors of the eighties and nineties were gods, and there was a great deal of shouting.

And that doesn't happen when you spin?

I've never seen that before. More attention is paid to the actors when shooting. Besides, I was mid-40 and very experienced when I started shooting regularly.

SPIEGEL ONLINE: Why is the film so different from the stage?

Broich: The week-long rehearsal at the theatre is rather searching, which is why it sometimes gets chaotic. There's a strict schedule for filming, so I have to be on point for minutes, sometimes just seconds. There are arguments that are counterproductive.

SPIEGEL ONLINE: In the comedy "My Mother Plays Crazy", which is broadcast on Good Friday, you experience a late love. It fits your real life. For almost two years, you've had a new man by your side, an economic lawyer.

We met on the plane. We were both asked to take other seats and eventually sat next to each other. When I laughed about the buckle belts, I asked him if he knew Loriot's sketch on the plane. And then he said, "Oh, yes, the Dune Elegies by Rilke." They're actually in the sketch. That was the starting shot for a fun one-half hour conversation and for more.

SPIEGEL ONLINE: What does such an encounter mean in this part of your life?

Do you enjoy couples who actually stay together until death do them part?

Broich: Actually, I like the idea, because such a separation is exhausting. First things first go off in your head. But when the roof flies away, you can still see the stars.

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