“Yesterday I put up some more film stars in my room but this time with photo corners so I can take them down again.” (Anne Frank - October 18, 1942)
Movie star pictures
Just like so many other young girls, Anne decorates her room with pictures. Immediately after the Frank family takes up residence in the Secret Annex, Anne pastes all sorts of magazine clippings and postcards on the walls of her room. While hiding in the Secret Annex, Anne regularly spends time working on her photo collection. She finds it boring to have to look at the same images all the time.
The secrets of Anne's room
Discover the stories behind the pictures in Anne’s room
, July 11, 1942
Our little room looked very bare at first with nothing on the walls; but thanks to Daddy who had brought my film-star collection and picture postcards on beforehand, and with the aid of a paste pot and brush, I have transformed the walls into one gigantic picture. This makes it look much more cheerful…
The Norwegian figure skater Sonja Henie became the Olympic and world champion many times in the 1920s and 30s. She made her acting debut in 1936. Anne Frank was also a keen skater. She took lessons at the Apollohal ice rink, and during her time in hiding she fantasised in her diary about a skating performance with her cousin Buddy Elias, who was a figure skater and actor. She drew a skating dress with a matching hat to accompany her story. Anne must have been a big fan of Sonja Henie, because she stuck up three pictures of her on her wall. This photo was recently returned to its original position after restoration work. It came from the Libelle women’s magazine of 19 February 1937.
The photo of Greta Garbo that Anne stuck on her wall was made for the 1939 film ‘Ninotchka’. Like many of Anne’s other photos, it is from the Libelle magazine. The Swedish actress Greta Garbo was one of the biggest Hollywood stars of Anne’s day. ‘Ninotchka’ was her penultimate film; she retired from acting in 1941.
Heinz Rühmann was one of the best-known German actors of the 20th century. When Hitler came to power in 1933 he managed to remain as politically neutral as possible, although during the war he could not avoid his work being co-opted for Nazi propaganda purposes. Because of this he was banned from performing in the first year after the war; the period of denazification. This photo was made for the 1939 film Paradies der Junggesellen (“Singles’ Paradise”).
Ginger Rogers made her film debut in 1930. She became a major star through her work with Fred Astaire, with whom she played in a number of films such as ‘Flying to Rio’ and ‘Top Hat’ from 1933 onwards. When this photo was published (Anne cut it out of a Libelle magazine from 1940) she was at the height of her fame, and was making several films a year.