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Caroline Link
Link (2020)
Born (1964-06-02) 2 June 1964 (age 60)
Bad Nauheim, West Germany
Nationality German
Occupation Film director

Caroline Link (born 2 June 1964) is a German TV and film director and screenwriter.

She is best known for directing critically acclaimed Beyond Silence, which was nominated for an Academy Award for Best International Feature Film, and for directing Nowhere in Africa, which won an Academy Award for Best International Feature Film and was nominated for a Golden Globe Award.

Life and work

Caroline Link is the daughter of Jürgen and Ilse Link. From 1986 to 1990 she studied at the University of Television and Film Munich (HFF), and then worked as an assistant director and script writer.

Link's early work includes the short film Bunte Blumen, from 1988. She was a co-director on the documentary film Das Glück zum Anfassen (1989). For Bavaria Film, she wrote two screenplays to the detective series Der Fahnder (The Investigators).

Caroline Link grew up in a small town outside of Frankfurt, Germany in 1968. Despite her family giving her a strong moral compass, they were a "non intellectual and non artistic family." Link first became interested in pursuing filmmaking after being a nanny in America, when she came back to Germany she was working on set as an extra and engaged with a camera man. She thought it would be an interesting profession, she recognized that being a camera women was going to be hard but after studying what they did on set as an extra she was able to get herself an internship in the film industry. Link enjoyed working in the film industry but wanted the ability to create and express her politics.

Link's first feature film, Jenseits der Stille (Beyond Silence, 1996) was nominated for the Academy Award as Best Foreign Language Film, and attracted attention for its portrayal of a family with deaf parents. Her second feature film was Annaluise and Anton (1999), based on a novel by Erich Kästner. Her third feature film, Nirgendwo in Afrika (Nowhere in Africa, 2001), adapted by Link from the autobiographical novel by Stefanie Zweig and shot on location in Kenya, received the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film as well winning the German Film Award (Deutscher Filmpreis) in five categories, including Best Fiction Film.

Beyond Silence

Beyond Silence was Link's first break through, was nominated for the Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film and brought her global recognition. Beyond Silence illustrates the struggles of the main character Lara, a child of deaf adults (CODA), among communicating with her deaf parents Martin and Kai. Link uses the theme of silence in her story as an allegory for censorship, generational trauma and oppression in the heart of Germany society. " This isn’t really a movie about deafness, Beyond Silence. It’s about deafness on the surface, of course, but the emotional substance is about communication in a family. I always try to speak about a universal emotion that most viewers will know and understand. So with Beyond Silence, I knew I wanted to make a movie about a father and a daughter – a daughter who loves her father very much but who feels drawn to a completely different world. This I knew from my own life, and this is what I wanted to write about before I knew I’d make a movie about a deaf family."

“Women tend to worry a lot about their perception. We want to be nice people. But it’s not always possible to be calm, sweet and understanding when you are in a leading position or if you really try to get something that you need for your creative idea. I had to learn, that it is ok for a woman to WANT something, to be the boss and to sometimes even be aggressive”.

Personal life

Link lives with her partner, the film director Dominik Graf, and their daughter, who was born in 2002.



Year Title Role Notes
2019 When Hitler Stole Pink Rabbit Director
2018 All About Me [de] Director
2013 Exit Marrakech Director
2008 A Year Ago in Winter Director
2001 Nowhere in Africa Director
1999 Annaluise & Anton Director
1996 Beyond Silence Director
1990 Sommertage
1989 Glück zum Anfassen
1988 Bunte Blumen


Year Title Role Notes
1992 Kalle der Träumer
1985 Der Fahnder

Awards and nominations

Year Award Category Work Result Notes
2019 German Film Award Most Popular German Film Of The Year All About Me [de] Won
2003 Golden Globe Awards Best Foreign Language Film Nowhere in Africa Nominated
2002 Academy Awards Best International Feature Film Won
1998 Bavarian Film Award Best Young People's Film Won
1997 Academy Awards Best International Feature Film Beyond Silence Nominated
1997 Tokyo Sakura Grand Prix Won
1996 Bavarian Film Award Best New Director Won

See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: Caroline Link para niños

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