Leonie Benesch

Leonie Benesch

Her first role was in the 2007 German drama "Beautiful Bitch," but German-born actress Leonie Benesch did not gain international attention until she starred in German filmmaker Michael Haneke's "The White Ribbon," a beautiful black and white exploration of a small protestant village on the eve of World War I. The movie, gorgeous and tense, has been called Haneke's finest, and Benesch's performance was also hailed by critics and audiences alike. She plays a local village girl named Eva, who is being courted by the town's schoolteacher played by Christian Friedel. The schoolteacher is attempting to investigate mysterious and sinister happenings in their village, while building a relationship with Eva. Following her work on "The White Ribbon," Benesch went on to another intense project in 2010's youth prison drama "Picco." Directed by Philip Koch, the movie explores the struggles of a newcomer to a youth prison, and his struggles for survival inside the brutal world of a correctional facility. That same year, Benesch played the role of Yvonne in the Sophie Heldman film "Colors in the Dark," about an aging couple struggling to come to terms with the change in their relationship when it is revealed that the husband is suffering from prostate cancer.