Lorens Marmstedt was born Sigfrid Lorens Eriksson in Stockholm on 29 October 1908, the son of a northern Swedish businessman (the head of AB Medelhavskompaniet) and his Italian wife. Between themselves his parents always spoke French, yet his mother usually spoke only Italian with her son, his father Swedish. During Lorens’ early years, the family spent extended periods in France and Italy, and the culture of these countries coupled with his mother’s fiery temperament had a strong influence on his developing personality. After the death of his father he assumed the more artistic-sounding name of Marmstedt.
At 18 years of age Marmstedt was employed by Svenska Dagbladet, where between 1927 and 1931 he wrote film reviews under the pseudonym Siglon. He became one of Sweden’s first cinephiles, writing enthusiastic articles about Soviet films and celebrated European directors such as Ernst Lubitsch and René Clair.
In 1938, after a somewhat lacklustre spell as a film director… read more