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Johnny & Me - A Journey through Time with John Heartfield

  • Burnout mit John Heartfield (Working title)
All titles (4)
Documentary Feature | 2021-2023 | Animation, Portrait | Austria, Germany, Switzerland



Brief synopsis

The German painter, graphic artist, photomontage artist and stage designer, John Heartfield, who was born in Berlin in 1891, was one of Europe's most important artists according to Bertold Brecht. Rosa Luxemburg personally handed Heartfield, a Communist from the very beginning, the party's manifesto in 1918. George Grosz and Kurt Tucholsky were among his closest friends and artistic companions. In protest against German warmongering, Heartfield anglicised his name. For the Nazis, the inventor of political photomontage soon became one of the most dangerous enemies of the state. He spent years on the run in Europe, and later failed to find a safe home even in socialist East Germany. Plagued by a creativity crisis and self-doubt, graphic artist Stephanie becomes fascinated by John Heartfield's work, which she discovers in an exhibition. A time tunnel transposes her to a studio where the artist, now a cartoon character, takes her on a journey through his eventful life. A close friendship develops between the two colleagues. And Stephanie starts to work with paper and scissors again.


Digital compositor / compositing artistThorsten Pengel
Director of photographyThomas Eirich-Schneider
Costume designerAnne-Sophie Raemy
Costume design, puppet construction, puppet supervision on set
Costume design, puppet construction, puppet supervision on set
DirectorKatrin Rothe
EditorHannes Starz
Key makeup artist/hair stylistUschi Braun
ProducerSereina Gabathuler
ProducerRalph Wieser
ProducerAndrea Ufer
ProducerGunter Hanfgarn
Production managerSusanne Berger
Production coordinatorJennifer Becker
ScreenwriterKatrin Rothe
Script consultantJens Becker
Production sound mixerRoland Winkler
Sound editorClara Hoffmann
Adr recordistKai 'Hear' Hoffmann

Distribution / Sales companies

New Docs e.K. [de]
RFF - Real Fiction Filmverleih e. K. [de]


Subtitles / Audio descriptionAudiofilm e.U.


Award winnerYearAwardCategory 
Katrin Rothe2023Annecy International Animation Film Festival [fr]
Feature film contrechamp
Feature film contrechampNominated


2023FranceAnnecy International Animation Film Festival
Feature film contrechamp
Feature film contrechamp

Cinema releases and premieres

Theatre releaseGermanyThursday, 25/01/2024
PremiereMonday, 12/06/2023Annecy International Animation Film Festival [fr]