Director Christian Petzold

Production year 2018

Length 101min.

Country Germany/France


The German troops are just outside Paris. Georg escapes to Marseille at the last moment. His luggage contains the legacy of a writer named Weidel, who took his own life out of fear of persecution. This legacy comprises a manuscript, some letters and the Mexican Embassy’s assurance of a visa. Only those who can prove that they will leave are allowed in this port town, and this means you need an entry permit from a potential host country. Assuming the identity of Weidel, Georg tries to obtain one of the few scarce passages on a ship. Talks between refugees take place in the corridors of his small hotel, the waiting rooms of consulates, and the cafés and bars down at the harbour. Georg befriends Driss, the son of his late comrade Heinz, who died whilst trying to flee. But when he meets the mysterious Marie, his plans change.

Transit is based on Anna Seghers’ eponymous novel which she wrote in exile. The film is set in contemporary Marseille where these characters from the past move around. And so, refugees from back then meet refugees from today, history meets the present, and all of their stories combine to create one eternal transit space.


Christian Petzold
Christian Petzold



Florian Koerner von Gustorf, Michael Weber


Christian Petzold

Director of Photography

Hans Fromm

Production designer

Kade Gruber

Music by

Stefan Will


Dominik Schleier, Martin Steyer, Andreas Mücke-Niesytka


Bettina Böhler


Franz Rogowski, Paula Beer, Godehard Giese, Lilien Batman.

Christian Petzold

After studying German and drama at the Freie Universität he enrolls in Berlin's German Academy for Film and Television. There he studies movie direction while at the same time working as an assistant director to Harun Farocki and Hartmut Bitomsky. After graduation, Christian Petzold makes a series of interesting TV films. In 2000, his first theatrical feature, The State I Am in, about a couple of left-wing terrorists, is released and makes a strong impression and earning its director both the German Film Award and the Hessischer Best Film Award. By 2012, this prolific creator has managed to make two more TV films and five additional features, among which Yella and Barbara, which is quite rightly awarded the Gold Bear.


The State I Am in (2000), Totter Man/Something to Remind Me (2001), Wolfsburg (2003), Ghosts (2005), Yella (2007), Jerichow (2008), Barbara (2012), Phoenix (2014), Transit (2018).

FILMS 2018