Manfred Richter (born 16 October 1929) is a German writer, scriptwriter and dramaturg.
Richter was born in Dresden in 1929 as the son of a tram conductor. He first worked as a miner for the Wismut company, studied acting in Dresden and Berlin and at the DEFA-Nachwuchsstudio in Potsdam-Babelsberg. Nevertheless, he later decided to become an art teacher and took his exams in Erfurt. There Richter also wrote his first work, the children's book Das Zauberfaß (The Magic Barrel), which made him known as a young author. Louis Fürnberg became aware of him and persuaded him to study at the German Institute for Literature in Leipzig, which he did. Furthermore, he completed specialist training as a scenarist at the Konrad Wolf Film University of Babelsberg.
Richter became a staff writer at the Deutsches Nationaltheater und Staatskapelle Weimar, later a dramaturge at the Landestheater in Dessau and finally a screenwriter at the DEFA Studio for Feature Films in Babelsberg. He wrote his first screenplay for the East German film production company in 1962 for and with Walter Beck: Als Martin 14 war (based on a story by Hans Schönrock). After the11. Plenum des ZK der SED of the Sozialistische Einheitspartei Deutschlands, he was dismissed from DEFA in the mid-1960s due to cultural-political disagreements and in 1966 was punitively transferred to Filmfabrik Wolfen as artistic director of the Kulturhaus, where he worked until 1975. Since then, he has worked as a freelance writer, interrupted by a six-year stint as a screenwriter at DEFA (1984-1990).
Richter wrote a number of scripts for about a dozen cinema and television films as well as various plays.