Empress Sissi

Sissi Empress ( Sissi, die junge Kaiserin in German ) is an Austrian film directed by Ernst Marischka in 1956.

The film is based on the love story of Empress Sissi , played by Romy Schneider , and the Emperor Franz Joseph , played by Karlheinz Böhm .


Sissi and Franz are now married, but the young Empress has a hard time with the overwhelming protocol of the Vienna court and is not happy that her stepmother, Archduchess Sophie, is spying on her all the time. Sissi confides to her diary that she feels lonely and regrets her life in Bavaria; the archduchess Sophie, who took Sissi’s diary, read it to Franz, who is rather annoyed at it; Sissi later confesses that she feels very lonely but that she is happy when they are together. Sissi is also very interested in Hungarywho has no more sovereigns: she loves this country which she has never visited, and she promises her Hungarian teacher that she will use all her influence in favor of this country. She wins a first victory when she convinces Franz not to sentence Count Andrássy to deathand the other rebels. The latter comes to the Palace to thank her from the bottom of the heart and Sissi invites him and his compatriots to the next ball of the court. At this ball, Sissi faints and learns from the doctor that she is expecting her first child; this child happens to be a girl. Without consulting Sissi, Franz and his mother decide to call him Sophie. But Sissi’s happy days as a mother are short-lived: the archduchess, with Franz’s consent, removes Sissi custody of the child, claiming that Sissi is too young to give him an education worthy of his rank. Sissi, wounded at not having the support of her husband, flees from Vienna and leaves for her parents in Bavaria .

His mother, Duchess Ludovica, is so happy to see her daughter again that she dares to tell him that she has run away but confesses to her father during a walk in the forest. But Franz, loving Sissi more than anything, joins her in Bavaria and convinces her to return to Vienna. They spend a few days in the mountains where they can forget all the worries of the court. But when she returns to Vienna, Sophie refuses to return her daughter to Sissi; the latter then decides to abandon Vienna and to leave forever. Ludovica then comes to see her sister Archduchess Sophie and tries to make him listen to reason. Sophie is human and loves her son, she sacrificed everything for him and must not risk destroying the happiness she has spent her life building. At first Sophie resists – for her Sissi is above all Empress and she must first support Franz – but she eventually give in and makes little Sophie Sissi. The latter then attends the reception of the Hungarian delegates where it is learned that she will be crowned at the same time as Franz, Queen of Hungary.

The film ends with the crowning of Franz and Sissi: they become King and Queen of Hungary.

Technical sheet

  • Original title: Sissi – Die junge Kaiserin
  • French title: Sissi impératrice
  • Director: Ernst Marischka
  • Scenario: Ernst Marischka
  • Photography: Bruno Mondi
  • Music: Anton Profes
  • Sets: Fritz Juptner-Jonstorff
  • Production Karl Ehrlich
  • Distribution: SNC
  • Country of origin: Austria
  • Language: German
  • Size: 35 mm – Colors – Ratio: 1,66: 1
  • Sound: Stereo 4 magnetic tracks and mono optical sound copies
  • Genre: Drama , Romantic Movie
  • Duration: 107 minutes
  • Release dates:
    •  Austria : 1956
    •  France :


  • Romy Schneider (VF: Gilberte Aubry ) : Princess Elisabeth in Bavaria called Sissi
  • Karl-Heinz Böhm (VF: Jean-Pierre Duclos ) : François-Joseph says Franz
  • Magda Schneider (VF: Lita Recio ) : The Duchess Ludovica in Bavaria
  • Gustav Knuth (VF 1 st dubbing: André Valmy , nd dubbing: Serge Nadaud ) : Duke Max in Bavaria
  • Uta Franz : Princess Helene
  • Walter Reyer (VF 1 e dubbing: René Arrieu , e dubbing: Michel Le Royer ) : The Count Andrassy
  • Peter Weck (VF: Jacques Thébault ) : The Archduke Karl-Ludwig
  • Vilma Degischer (VF 1 e dubbing: Lucienne Givry , e dubbing: Jacqueline Ferriere ) : The Archduchess Sophie
  • Erich Nicowithz (VF: Gérard Férat) : Archduke Franz-Karl
  • Josef Meinrad (VF: Michel Roux ) : Colonel Böckl

Around the film

In addition to the creations of Anton Profes, the musical accompaniment includes many classical works including several waltzes by Johann Strauss and Alleluia of the Messiah by Georg Friedrich Haendel and the waltz of Faust by Charles Gounod.

The film is part of a trilogy with Sissi (1955) and Sissi facing his destiny (1958).

The French dubbed of 1956 having been damaged, the film was doubled again in 1967, still with Gilberte Aubry and Jean-Pierre Duclos in the main roles, but with some changes also.

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