Henry Blanke
Heinz Blanke

(1901-12-30)December 30, 1901
Steglitz, Berlin, Germany
DiedMay 28, 1981(1981-05-28) (aged 79)
Los Angeles
AwardsGolden Globe Award for Best Motion Picture - Drama
1948 The Treasure of the Sierra Madre
NBR Award for Best Film
1959 The Nun's Story

Henry Blanke (December 30, 1901 – May 28, 1981) was a German-born film producer who also worked as an assistant director, supervisor, writer, and production manager. He was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Picture for The Nun’s Story (1959).


He was born Heinz Blanke in Steglitz, Berlin, Germany, the son of painter Wilhelm Blanke.[1][2] He began his career as a film cutter in 1920. Blanke became an assistant to Ernst Lubitsch and moved to Hollywood with him to make films with Warner Bros. including The Marriage Circle (1924).[3] He produced nine films in his native Germany before emigrating to Hollywood.[citation needed]

After Lubitsch left, Blanke stayed on as an assistant director.[3] He returned to Germany to be the production manager of Fritz Lang's 1927 film Metropolis[2] and then Warners re-hired him and put him in charge of German co-productions.[2] He eventually became a power at Warner's becoming production supervisor and working at the studio for over 25 years.[3]

When Hal B. Wallis became production chief after Darryl F. Zanuck left in 1933, Blanke and Sam Bischoff were the main producers at the studio.[3] In 1945, Blanke signed a 15-year contract with the studio and by 1953, was one of only three producers left, along with Bischoff and David Weisbart.[4]

Among his Hollywood producing credits are: Of Human Bondage (1946), The Treasure of the Sierra Madre (1948) and The Fountainhead (1949). When the announced production of The Life of Emile Zola (1937) came under fire from Georg Gyssling, the Nazi German consul to the United States (due to its portrayal of Alfred Dreyfus, who was of Jewish descent), Blanke lied to him, telling him the Dreyfus affair was only a small part of the film.[5]

The Online Archive of California has a transcript of his oral recollections.[6]

Partial filmography

As producer unless otherwise indicated.


  1. ^ "Heinz (Henry) Blanke (1901-1980 [sic])". wilhelm-blanke-archiv.de. (in German)
  2. ^ a b c Thomson, David (October 16, 2005). "Henry Blanke". Variety. Retrieved July 16, 2019.
  3. ^ a b c d Finler, Joel W. (April 2, 1992), The Hollywood Story (Second ed.), Mandarin, pp. 395-397, ISBN 0-7493-0637-8
  4. ^ "Brains-For-Dollars at WB". Variety. September 16, 1953. p. 3. Retrieved October 6, 2019.
  5. ^ Denby, David (September 16, 2013). "Hitler in Hollywood". The New Yorker.
  6. ^ "Recollections of Henry Blanke oral history transcript". Online Archive of California. Retrieved March 25, 2015.