Also on public holidays: ZDF shows “Winnetou”

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Also on holiday
ZDF shows “Winnetou”

Is “Winnetou” still contemporary? This debate has become heated recently. An alleged boycott of the Karl May films by the public broadcasters also surfaced. But look at this: “Winnetou and the Half-Blood Apanatschi” is still on the program of ZDF, and on the German Day of Unity.

Is “Winnetou” actually “cancelled”? No: On German Unity Day (October 3) at 11:30 AM, ZDF will screen one of the classic Karl May films with Pierre Brice and Lex Barker: “Winnetou and the Half-Blood Apanatschi”. Uschi Glas plays the settler’s daughter “Apanatschi”, who receives her father’s secret gold mine for her birthday and is kidnapped by greedy prospectors.

Generations in Germany were influenced by the Karl May film adaptations of the 1960s starring Pierre Brice as “Winnetou”. These films were often shown on ARD stations. However, they can no longer show the first and third, because according to the ARD program management, the license rights expired in 2020.

The film was last seen on linear television on November 1 on the private channel Kabel Eins, before that in August and April 2021 on Sat.1 Gold. Before that, Kabel Eins showed it on November 1, 2019 and in June 2019. The last ARD channels to broadcast were BR Fernsehen (New Year’s Eve 2018) and MDR Fernsehen (July 2018).

Uschi Glas was still Ursula Glas

Glass, now 78, appeared on screen as Ursula Glas in “Winnetou and the Half-Blood Apanatschi”. She was 22 when the film hit theaters in the summer of 1966. It was one of her first leading roles before her breakthrough in 1968 with the tragic comedy “Zur Sache, Schätzchen”. Götz George also played alongside her.

The prominent national holiday TV broadcast is really only notable because a sometimes heated debate about cultural appropriation and racism raged around “Winnetou” during the summer. It flared up after Ravensburger Verlag withdrew two companion books to a new “Winnetou” movie for children. Some felt overly critical of traditional materials at the time.

ZDF writes about the broadcast of the ‘Apanatschi’ film: “After the great success of the previous Karl May films in the 1960s, successful producer Horst Wendlandt remained faithful to the tried-and-true approach: the template of the famous author, in this case The story ‘Half-Blood’ was changed and rewritten almost beyond recognition; only basic motifs remained.”

The character of “Apanatschi” does not come from Karl May, but is fictional, ZDF explains. Her voice cannot be heard from Uschi Glas. “But almost 50 years later, in an interview, she contradicted the persistent rumor that she was being dubbed because of her Bavarian accent.”

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