Sissi (movie, 1955)

Sissi is an Austrian filmdirected by Ernst Marischka in 1955 .

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


Elizabeth de Wittelsbach , nicknamed by her family Sissi , is the daughter of Duke Maximilianand Duchess Ludovica of Bavaria. She is sixteen years old, had a happy childhood with her brothers and sisters, she is a very natural young woman who has a strong character. She has a great complicity with her father with whom she shares the passion for riding and the love of nature. In August 1853, Archduchess Sophie, who is the mother of Emperor Franz Joseph, informs her sister Duchess Ludovica that she would like Sissi’s older sister, Helen, to be the future Empress of Austria. which delighted Helen. The duchess and Helen, accompanied by Sissi, then leave for Bad Ischl where Helene must meet the emperor who will celebrate his birthday; the latter will announce his engagement with Helen the same evening. Sissi ignores the reason for this trip and the

While the Duchess Ludovica and Helen prepare to go to tea at the house of the Archduchess Sophie, Sissi is punished by her mother who can not stand her turbulence, but she disobeys and makes the wall to go fishing; she then meets by chance François-Joseph who falls immediately under the spell of this beautiful girl whose identity he does not know. At five o’clock the same afternoon, they meet to go for a walk in the forest and François-Joseph then reveals to Sissi that he is jealous of the man whom she will marry and confesses to him that he loves him but he reveals that he must marry Princess Helen of Bavaria. Very embarrassed and not wanting to be an obstacle to her sister’s marriage, Sissi fled, leaving François-Joseph alone in the forest. When she returns from her walk, Helen confesses that during the ball, the emperor will announce his engagement with her; Sissi, who initially did not attend the ball, was invited to be the rider of prince Karl Ludwig, brother of the emperor. She is finally obliged to attend the ball and it is there that François-Joseph discovers who she is; he is very happy to see the lovely stranger from Possenhofen ; at the ball, Sissi is very uncomfortable: the emperor then confesses to him again that he loves her and that he wants to marry her; she refuses for fear of hurting her sister. But Francois-Joseph does not take Sissi’s advice into account and announces to his mother Archduchess Sophie her firm intention to marry the sixteen-year-old Princess; Despite the disagreement of his mother, he does not change his mind and it is to Sissi that he offers the flowers for the dance cotillon, officially announcing his engagement with the latter. Helen is broken with sorrow and leaves the ball in tears; Sissi, she complains of having been put before the fait accompli but can only bend to the desire of François-Joseph which she is in love anyway.

Marriage is in preparation, but Sissi is not happy to be engaged; she feels guilty about Helene. Her mother tries to reassure her by telling him that she is the one that François-Joseph likes and that she must be happy about it. Helen finally returns to Possenhofen and reassures Sissi: she does not blame him and wishes him a great happiness. On April 20, 1854, Sissi is presented to the Austrian people who welcome him with great kindness and joy. On April 24, the wedding is celebrated in the Augustinian church where Sissi becomes the Empress of Austria.

Technical sheet

  • Title: Sissi
  • Director: Ernst Marischka
  • Scenario: Ernst Marischka
  • Photography: Bruno Mondi
  • Music: Anton Profes
  • Sets: Fritz Jüptner-Jonstorff
  • Production: Karl Ehrlich
  • Distribution: New Society of Cinematography (CNS)
  • Country of origin: Austria
  • Language: German
  • Format: Agfacolor Colors – Ratio: 1.37: 1
  • Genre: Drama , Romantic Movie
  • Duration: 102 minutes
  • Release dates:
    •  Austria : 1955
    •  France :


  • Romy Schneider (VF: Gilberte Aubry ) : Princess Elisabeth in Bavaria called Sissi
  • Karlheinz Böhm (VF: Jean-Pierre Duclos ) : Franz Joseph says Franz
  • Magda Schneider (VF: Lita Recio ) : Duchess Ludovica of Bavaria
  • Gustav Knuth (VF: André Valmy ) : the Duke Max in Bavaria
  • Uta Franz (VF: Lily Baron ) : Princess Helen
  • Peter Weck (VF: Jacques Thébault ) : Archduke Charles-Louis
  • Vilma Degischer (VF: Lucienne Givry ) : Archduchess Sophie
  • Erich Nicowithz (VF: Gérard Férat) : Archduke Franz-Karl
  • Josef Meinrad (VF: Michel Roux ) : Commander 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 , the Alleluia of the Messiah by Georg Friedrich Haendel and the intermezzo of the opera Carmen by Georges Bizet .
  • The film is part of a trilogy with Sissi Empress (1956) and Sissi facing his destiny (1957).
  • Eight years later, in the film The Cardinal (1963) directed by Otto Preminger , Romy Schneider will find the following actors of Sissi :
    • Josef Meinrad (the clumsy Commander Böckl, Sissi’s future bodyguard) interprets the Viennese Archbishop Theodor Innitzer who first fights with the Nazis before realizing that he has been manipulated.
    • Peter Weck (a pretender of Victoria in the early years of a queen, then Archduke Charles-Louis , brother of Emperor Franz Joseph , brother-in-law of Sissi loving her in their youth) plays Kurt Von Hartman, the husband of Annemarie von Hartman (Romy Schneider), a Viennese banker who commits suicide before his eyes when the Gestapo comes to arrest him because of his Jewish ancestry .
    • Vilma Degischer (Archduchess Sophie , mother of the emperor, Sissi’s mother-in-law) interprets Sister Wilhelmina, a Viennese nun who, at the request of Bishop Fermoyle ( Tom Tryon ), will welcome Annemarie von Hartman ( Romy Schneider) before it engages the Nazis.

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