Franz Josef Strauß

A German Story

He was one of the most memorable politicians in post-war West German history. For some people he was "Saint Franz Josef", while others considered him dangerous, corrupt and coarse. If ever a politician polarized people, it was Franz Josef Strauß.

3. October 2008 marks the 20th anniversary of the death of the Bavarian state president, Franz Josef Strauß. In association with ZDF, the authors Sebastian Dehnhardt and Manfred Oldenburg take a look behind the facade and examine this highly intelligent, rhetorically brilliant but also extremely controversial politician and visionary. Who was Strauß? What motivated him? And why did he never achieve his aim of becoming German Chancellor?

Eye-witnesses from among his closest friends and family speak openly about this belligerent spirit and ambivalent character. They shed light on his life, his personal background and the private highs and lows of this exceptional politician, revealing for the first time aspects of his history – which is at the same time a piece of German history.

Length 2 x 45'
Year 2008
Genre Documentary
Format 16:9 HDTV
Director Sebastian Dehnhardt, Manfred Oldenburg
Boadcast ZDF