13 August 2014

Agnes Petersen

Agnes Petersen (1904-1953?) was a star of the Danish and German silent cinema. She was the second wife of the legendary Russian-born film star and charmer Ivan Mozzhukhin.

Agnes Petersen
German postcard by Ross Verlag, no. 5032/1, 1930-1931. Photo: Atelier Manassé, Wien.

Dark-haired beauty

Agnes Petersen was born in 1904. Sometimes she was credited as Agnes Petersen-Mozzuchin or Agnes Peterson.

She was Danish, but unknown is where exactly the dark-haired beauty was born.

In 1924, she started her film career in the Danish comedies Raske Riviera Rejsende/Healthy Riviera Travelers (Lau Lauritzen, 1924) and Ole Opfinders offer/Inventor Ole’s Sacrifice (Lau Lauritzen, 1924), both starring the duo Harald Madsen and Carl Schenstrøm a.k.a. Fy og Bi or Long and Short.

For the Nordisk studio she appeared in the drama Den store Magt/The great power (August Blom, 1925) with Lili Beck.

The Danish film industry imploded and Harald Madsen and Carl Schenstrøm moved to Germany, where they were well-known as Pat und Patachon.

In their comedy Schwiegersöhne/Sons-in-law (Hans Steinhoff, 1926), Agnes Petersen also had a part.

In Germany, Petersen soon found more roles. In the drama Die Gefangene von Shanghai/The prisoner of Shanghai (Géza von Bolváry, Augusto Genina, 1927) she played the Chinese Li. The lead roles in this German production were played by Italian Carmen Boni and British Jack Trevor.

Other German films with Petersen were Dr. Bessels Verwandlung/Dr. Bessel‘s Transformation (Richard Oswald, 1927) with Hans Stüwe, Frauenarzt Dr. Schäfer/Gynaecologist Dr.Schäfer (Jacob and Luise Fleck, 1928) featuring Iván Petrovich.

Agnes Petersen
Austrian postcard by Iris-Verlag, no. 5500. Collection: Didier Hanson.

Agnes Petersen
German postcard by Ross Verlag. Photo: Atelier Böhm, Berlin. Collection: Didier Hanson.

The Laughing Lady

In Berlin, Agnes Petersen met the famous Russian-born actor Ivan Mozzhukhin. They married and she started to use the name Agnes Petersen-Mozżuchinowa.

With her husband she travelled to Hollywood, but their American adventure was not a success. Soon they were back in Berlin

She appeared in the drama Geheimnisse des Orients/Secrets of the Orient (Alexandre Volkoff, 1928) again with Iván Petrovich and with Nicolas Koline.

In Der geheime Kurier/The Secret Courier (Gennaro Righelli, 1928), she co-starred with Lil Dagover and Mozzhukhin.

With the rise of the sound film she could no longer continue her film career in Germany. In Czechoslovakia she played the lead role in the drama Hrích/Sin (Carl Lamac, 1929) and in Poland in Kult ciala/The cult of the body (Michal Waszynski, 1930) with Victor Varconi.

Her last film was the Swedish production Den farliga leken (Gustaf Bergman, 1931) starring Jenny Hasselqvist. This Paramount production was an alternative language production of The Laughing Lady (Victor Schertzinger, 1929) and was shot at the Paramount studio in Joinville in France.

Little is known about her further life. In 1939 her husband Ivan Mozzhukin died from a severe form of tuberculosis. According to Poul at NitrateVille, Agnes Petersen also died from tuberculosis at the age of 49 (in 1953 or 1954?).

Agnes Petersen
German postcard by Ross Verlag, no. 3761/1, 1928-1929. Photo: Alex Binder, Berlin.

Sources: Poul (NitrateVille), Thomas Staedeli (Cyranos), Wikipedia (Polish) and IMDb.

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