1887 - 1937
Die Schauspielerin Marija Leiko was born in Riga/Russia. She fled with her life partner, the later director Johannes Guter from Russia to Austria in 1908 because she was suspected to be a sympathizer of Trotzki.
In the next years she became establies as a stage actress, among others in Frankfurt at the Neuen Theater and Dresden before she came to Berlin and worked for Max Reinhardt beside others. During this years she often appeared in classical plays.
Marija Leiko also took part regulary in movies from 1917 and she was also convincing on the big screen with her impressive acting.
To her first movies belong "Die Diamantenstiftung" (17) von ihrem Ehemann, dem Regisseur Johannes Guter, "Kain" (18), "Ewiger Strom" (19), "Die Frau im Käfig" (19) und "Lola Montez" (19) playing the title role.
In the 20's followed other successful productions like "Satanas" (20), "Die Kwannon von Okadera" (20), "Das Opfer der Ellen Larsen" (21), "Kinder der Finsternis" (21), "Der Eid des Stephan Huller" (21), "Versunkene Welten" (22) "Der Schatz der Gesine Jakobsen" (23) and "Die Rothausgasse" (28).
with the upcoming sound fim she retired from the film business and concentrated again to the theater exclusively.
When the National Socialist seized power in Germany she returned to her native city Riga. When she accepted a theater engagement in Moscow it became a fatal decision in her life. During the so-called Mopping-Up by Stalin's henchmen Marija Leiko was arrested as a spy because of her past in Germany and she was interrogated hard.
About her manner of death exist different versions. One says that Marija
Leiko did not see a way out of the situation and committed suicide in her
cell by hanging respectively that she was executed by a firing squad.
Other movies with Marija Leiko: