Roland Emmerich (German: [ˈʁoːlant ˈɛməʁɪç]; born 10 November 1955) is a German film director, screenwriter, and producer, widely known for his disaster films. His films, most of which are English-language Hollywood productions, have made more than $3 billion worldwide, including just over $1 billion in the United States, making him the country's 15th-highest-grossing director of all time. He began his work in the film industry by directing the film The Noah's Ark Principle (1984) as part of his university thesis and also co-founded Centropolis Entertainment in 1985 with his sister. He is a collector of art and an active campaigner for the LGBT community, and is openly gay.
Emmerich owns homes in Los Angeles, New York City, London and Stuttgart. He likes to decorate his homes in a self-described "outlandish" manner, adorning them with rare Hollywood memorabilia, murals and portraits of dictators and Communist figures, and World War II militaria.Emmerich's extensive collection of artwork includes a painting of Jesus Christ wearing a Katharine Hamnett-styled T-shirt during his crucifixion, prints of Alison Jackson's works of a Princess Diana lookalike making obscene gestures and engaging in sex acts, a wax sculpture of Pope John Paul II laughing as he reads his own obituary, and a Photoshopped image of Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in a homoerotic pose. Emmerich, who is openly gay, and a financial supporter of U.S. progressive politics, states that the decorations and pieces are not declarations of any beliefs, but rather reflections of his "predilection for art with a political edge".Emmerich has claimed that he witnessed overt racism when producers and studio executives were opposed to allowing him to cast Will Smith for the lead in Independence Day, and reluctant to allow him to portray an interracial couple in The Day After Tomorrow. He has also claimed that he has encountered homophobia from the same groups, and is vocal in his opposition to such behavior. He has stated that sometimes he does "[not like working in] the movie business", describing it as a sometimes "very cold, brutal business", but his motivation to keep directing is that he genuinely "like[s] making movies".In 2006, he pledged $150,000 to the Legacy Project, a campaign dedicated to gay and lesbian film preservation. Emmerich made the donation on behalf of Outfest, making it the largest gift in the festival's history. In 2007, on behalf of the LGBT community, he held a fundraiser at his Los Angeles home for Democratic Party presidential candidate Hillary Clinton.Emmerich is in favor of the campaign for stunt performers to receive recognition at the Academy Awards, and has worked to raise awareness over the issue of global warming. He once was a chain-smoker who was known to smoke as many as four packs of cigarettes a day, Emmerich has often included in his films characters who are trying to quit smoking or warn against the dangers of tobacco use. Along with several other celebrities, he is a producer of The 1 Second Film, a non-profit project intended to raise money for women's rights in the developing world.Emmerich is married to Omar De Soto.
Emmerich was born in Stuttgart, West Germany, and grew up in the nearby town of Sindelfingen. As a youth, he traveled extensively throughout Europe and North America on vacations financed by his father, Hans, the wealthy founder of a garden machinery production company. In 1977, he began attending University of Television and Film Munich with the intention of studying to become a production designer. After watching Star Wars, he instead decided to enroll in the school's film director program. Required to create a short film as his final thesis in 1981, he wrote and directed the full-length feature The Noah's Ark Principle, which was screened as the opening film of the 34th Berlin International Film Festival in 1984.In 1985, he founded Centropolis Film Productions (now Centropolis Entertainment) in partnership with his sister, producer Ute Emmerich, and directed his major film debut, a fantasy feature named Joey. He subsequently directed the 1987 comedy Hollywood-Monster and the 1990 science-fiction film Moon 44. Theatrically, these were only released in and nearby his native country, although Emmerich filmed them in English and went against conventional German styles in an attempt to appeal to a larger market. This subsequently resulted in Moon 44 being released direct-to-video in the U.S. in early 1991. Joey and Hollywood-Monster eventually also saw home video releases in the U.S. (as Making Contact and Ghost Chase, respectively) once Emmerich achieved more prominence in America.
Movies & TV shows
The moon is being hit by an asteroid. It headed towards the Earth after deviating from its normal path. A group of astronauts, made up of the administrator of NASA and a scientific genius, are going t...
Getting It Right: The Making of Midway
From shooting at Pearl Harbor on the very ground where American servicemen died on December 7, 1941 to recreating the USS Enterprise aircraft carrier on a massive sound stage, the filmmakers behind Mi...
Independence Day: Resurgence
We knew they were coming back. The nations of Earth have collaborated on an immense defense program to protect the planet. Nothing can prepare us for the aliens. Only the ingenuity of a few brave men ...
1 TV show
The Real History of Science Fiction
The series heads to the very frontiers of space and science to produce the definitive television history of science fiction, told through its impact on cinema, television and literature, with the help...
4 Movies · 1 TV show
Roland Emmerich: Upping the Ante
Cast and crew of White House Down talk up Roland Emmerich the person and Roland Emmerich the filmmaker.
White House Down: A Dynamic Duo - Channing Tatum and Jamie Foxx
A look at the chemistry between Channing Tatum and Jamie Foxx in the movie.
Joko and Klaas host a late night talk show.
White House Down
Capitol Policeman John Cale was denied his dream job by the Secret Service. When the complex is overtaken by a heavily armed paramilitary group, he takes his little girl on a tour of the White House. ...
Meet the Insiders of 'White House Down'
A look at some of the supporting actors/characters in 'White House Down'.
Set against the backdrop of the Essex Rebellion against Queen Elizabeth I, the story advances the theory that Edward De Vere, Earl of Oxford, was the author of Shakespeare's plays.
The world has been turned into a wasteland by the sun. The humans who have survived are either smart or violent. There is a rumor that there is water in the mountains where Marie, Leonie, and Phillip ...
Hollywood between Paranoia and Sci-Fi: The Power of Myth
They culled from real life events to create some of the biggest sci-fi films of all time.
The End of the World: The Actor's Perspective
The 2012 film's ensemble cast and the strengths they brought to the project were looked at in a short piece.
2012: Roland Emmerich - Master of the Modern Epic
The 2012 film's cast and crew praise the work, vision, and style of the famed Disaster movie director. There is a man named Roland Emmerich.
2012 Startling New Secrets
Huge earthquakes. There are waves. The super volcanoes are on fire. The fires are out of control. The accurate calendar will come to an end on December 21, 2012 when there are many visions of a global...
Dr. Adrian Helmsley learns that the earth's core is heating up as a result of the solar storms. He warns the U.S. The entire race is doomed if proper preparations are not made for saving a fraction of...
A Texas cop, whose own daughter might have been forced into sexual slavery, joins forces with a Mexican youth to find the boy's sister, who was kidnapped and forced into prostitution. A Ukrainian woma...
Guns, Genes & Fighting Machines: The Making of 'Universal Soldier'
Retrospective documentary on the making of the film Universal Soldier (1992).
The Day After Tomorrow
After years of increases in the greenhouse effect, havoc is wreaked globally in the form of catastrophic hurricanes, tornadoes, tidal waves, floods and the beginning of a new Ice Age. Jack Hall tries ...
The Force Is with Them: The Legacy of Star Wars
The Force Is with Them: The Legacy of Star Wars is a Video Documentary included in the 2004 DVD of the Star Wars Original Trilogy. It explained the impact of "Star Wars" on various directors and actor...
Eight Legged Freaks
The residents of a rural mining town discover that a chemical spill has caused hundreds of little spiders to grow to the size of SUVs. The Sheriff's young son, Mike, and his family, including the Sher...
Boom! Hollywood's Greatest Disaster Movies
Narrated by Bill Mumy (Will Robinson from TV's "Lost in Space"), this documentary spotlights some of the most thrilling scenes the disaster genre has ever produced. From 1970s classics such as Airport...
The Patriot: The Art of War
A 10 minute featurette that details thoughts from the cast and crew about the reality of the battles shown in the film and also, how these scenes were filmed. It makes for moderately interesting viewi...
Independence Day: Creating Reality
A look into the making of the state of the art special effects for the film Independence Day (1996). This crew spent a long time creating these 400 plus effects shots, and ended up winning an Academy ...
Benjamin Martin wanted nothing more to do with battle in the French and Indian War, preferring the simple life of a farmer. Benjamin returned to his old life to protect his son when Gabriel enlisted i...
Godzilla, King of the Monsters
The documentary had interviews with Jun Fukuda, Ishiro Honda and Alex Cox. The documentary includes rare series such as "Ultra Q" and films such as "King Kong Escapes".
When a ship is attacked in the Pacific Ocean, a team of experts concludes that an oversized reptile is the culprit. Everything in Manhattan is destroyed by the giant lizard. A brutal battle ensues whe...
1 Movie · 1 TV show
On July 2, a giant alien mothership enters Earth's atmosphere and deploys several dozen saucer-shaped 'destroyer' spaceships that lay waste to major cities around the planet. The United States conduct...
Independence Day: The ID4 Invasion
A "mockumentary" of the alien invasion during Independence Day. Barry Nolan hosts the programme, the first 9 minutes of which are a spoof news report of the events of the film. The middle bit is a dis...
The Making of 'Independence Day'
We take a look at various fields of development for the motion picture, Independence Day (1996). Jeff Goldblum is our guide through 'Area ID4' (a rip-off name of Area 51). He pretends to creep around ...
1 TV show
Die Harald Schmidt Show
Sky Deutschland has a late night talk show hosted by a comedian. The show aired from 1995 to 2003 After moving his show to Das Erste, he returned to it on Sat.1st of September 2011. The show continued...
An American soldier who was killed in the Vietnam War is revived 25 years later by the military as UniSols, a high-tech soldier of the future. The soldier is forced to recall his past after the failed...
There are fights for the last deposits on other planets and satellites in the year 2038: the mineral resources of the earth are drained. This is the situation when one of the bigger mining corporation...
An old family retainer's spirit can be seen in an old grandfather clock. When a movie company uses a mansion for a film, the spirit of an alien comes in and convinces the filmmakers to find an old hou...
A nine year old boy named Joey, who after the tragic death of his father, begins to experience psychic powers such as allowing him to move objects with his mind, set things on fire, and communicate wi...
The Noah's Ark Principle
Most of the classic weapons of mass destruction have been abandoned. The weather can be controlled at any location on the planet by the European/American space station. Natural disasters such as storm...
1 TV show
Wanna bet, that..?
It was a long-running German-language entertainment television show. It is the most popular Saturday show in Europe. The British show You Bet! was based on the format of the American show. There are s...
The Magic Flute
17-year-old Tim Walker as he travels from London to the Austrian Alps to attend the legendary Mozart boarding school. There, he discovers a centuries-old forgotten passageway into the fantastic world ...
It's an Invasion! The Making of Eight Legged Freaks
The making of a documentary.