played by damian kulash / contact / coding by ~toricasillas
birth name anil wolfgang linus cassirer-pelham-hastings professionally anil cassirer date of birth + age January 1st, 1977; 38 place of birth indio, ca residence london, england occupation writer, director parents paul cassirer
phil silverstein
karen marten-silverstein
family rainer cassirer
wilhelm cassirer
brahma cassirer
indira cassirer
charlotte cassirer
ariel 'ari' silverstein
rufus silverstein
padma silverstein
sita silverstein
cecelia 'cece' indira roxanne hastings
status married

Anil Cassirer is an American film auteur, best known for his exacting attention to minutae detail in his work. he is best known for Rushmore, The Royal Tenenbaums and The Grand Budapest Hotel, which won him the Best Comedy/Musical Golden Globe Award and several technical Academy Awards.


Anil Cassirer was born the son of Paul Cassirer, a German singer, and Karen Marten, a shampoo model turned muse, in Indio, California in the late 70s. The first of the couple's three children together, Anil was bright and adventurous, happy to spend the day running around his parents house, accompanying his father to and from the studio to watch him record. Anil was doted on by his parents, though Paul spent a lot of time out of the house and off working. His mother taught him the ways of meditation and serenity, instilling a deep respect for all life in her young son, which made sibling rivalry obsolete once his brother, Brahma and sister, Indira followed. Life wasn't entirely happy for Paul and Karen, and once their spiritual beliefs started to divide, Karen and Paul parted, Karen with the family guru, Phil, and Paul eventually remarrying a young blonde known as Suze. Anil assimilated to this change rather well. It was easy when so much of your parents' personal lives were disclosed at a young age.

In a less-spiritual but still communal environment, Anil and his brother and sister moved with Phil to Santa Cruz, where they were joined with two teen step-sisters, Sita and Padma. Anil was no longer the oldest in the household, but his upbringing was quite typical. School came easy for him, and he excelled at history and English, finding a love for the arts early on that was nurtured by his mother and step-father. He participated in every musical endeavor he could, including band and chorus, and also found himself taking the advanced art courses offered by his high school. Anil was adept at collage, photography and installation art, and built up enough of a portfolio to get accepted into the Visual Arts program at Bennington College, where he would attend the following fall.

Throughout high school and college, Anil maintained a steady stream of contact with his father and Suze, though Paul was often touring and absent. They did most of their father-son bonding on the phone and through letter writing, which Anil understood was the way of things. If asked, he'd say he and his father had a pretty normal relationship, though Paul was undoubtedly a questionable contender in Anil's life due to his ultra-masculine ideals.College and beyond also brought about the realization that people knew who Anil's father was, and that the intimate details of his life with his mother were rather well-known. As a child, Anil wasn't exposed to the public eye, so it was easy to forget what his father and mother had done for a living. Anil managed well and made a vow to himself to avoid ever riding on his father's coattails through life.

Anil excelled in college, enjoying the spoils of life far from home and personal discovery. He made friends easily and enjoyed his time at Bennington and the internships that followed. His short films maintained a decent reception among his peers and constituents in the film world, and from there, Anil parlayed this success into working as a production assistant on small features and larger-scale music videos. His connections in the music video world allowed him to shop around his own short films and through world of mouth and much insisting, he was allowed to make his first real project, 1997's music video for Daft Punk's feature single, Around the World.


From there, Anil was given an opportunity to direct the film that he had been conceptualizing since his days at Bennington, a feature based on his experiences at private school entitled Rushmore. While the screenplay attracted high interest and buzz among the independent film world, funding was the major difficulty. The filming process was a constant set of back and forth between he and the studio for money, and while he enjoyed the directorial aspect of the work, he would begin a longstanding dislike of the studio-money situation surrounding filmmaking. Rushmore was also the beginning of his friendships and partnerships with both Bill Murray and Jason Schwartzman, both of whom have starred in many of Anil's later works. His work has always been critically acclaimed and somewhat divisive among film fans. A sharp attention to detail and art design has made his film work cohesive and easily identifiable. He is an exacting director who has been said to have the entire film 'in his head' before shooting begins. Despite this exhaustive approach to filmmaking, Cassirer is beloved by his loyal actors, who show up in multiple films.

personal life

Cassirer's sexuality has long been questioned, despite his relationships with women in the past, most notably electro-artist Nancy Whang (The Juan Maclean, LCD Soundsystem). He formally acknowledged his relationships with men, namely British actor and internet sensation Clarence Locke in an interview with The Advocate in early 2015. He married Locke in 2015, exact date unknown. Previously, he was speculated to have been in a relationship with a high profile actor. The relationship dissolved because Cassirer refused to live in the closet any longer. He has not categorically defined his sexuality, but most sources identify him as openly bisexual.

He attended Bennington College for art and graduated with high honors. Cassirer is fluent in German and French, and owns a small apartment in the 12th arrondisement, where he lived for a time between 2010 and 2012. He plays guitar and piano, though never took lessons. He is a talented sketch artist and painter, which he says comes in handy while storyboarding. He often works with his sister, Indira, on art design for his films.

Politically, Anil often declines to state his views, but has supported Democratic candidates for presidency in the past and made statements denouncing conservative legislation in his home state of California, including Proposition 8. Several interviews have alluded to a radically liberal point of view, verging on practical anarchism. Cassirer, residing currently in the UK, has been very vocal about denouncing the 'Brexit' leave vote (Cassirer has citizenship in the USA and Germany) and has also been photographed wearing an #ImWithHer button in support of Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign.


The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014) writer/director
Moonrise Kingdom (2012) writer/director
the fantastic mr. fox (2009) writer (adapted)/director
hotel chevalier (2007) writer/director
the darjeeling limited (2007) writer/director
THE ROYAL TENENBAUMS (2001) writer/director
RUSHMORE (1998) writer/director


angels in america (2017, National Theater) director

ad work/commercial

"CASTELLO CAVALCANTI" (PRADA, 2013) concept/director
"PRADA CANDY L'EAU" (PRADA FRAGRANCE, 2013) concept/director
"MODERN LIFE" (HYUNDAI AZERA, 2012) concept/director
"TALK TO MY CAR" (HYUNDAI AZERA, 2012) concept/director
"MON AMOUR" (STELLA ARTOIS, 2010) co-director
"SOFT BANK" (JAPANESE CELL PHONES, 2008) concept/director
"ACTOR" (AT&T, 2007) concept/director
"REPORTER" (AT&T, 2007) concept/director
"ANIL CASSIRER AMERICAN EXPRESS AD" (AMERICAN EXPRESS, 2007) concept/director & appearance as himself
"FRENCH DICTIONARY" (Levi's, 2006) concept/director

music videos

DON'T PLAY NO GAME THAT I CAN'T WIN - BEASTIE BOYS (2011) concept/director
burberry brit for men (2004-2006) model (print campaign)
burberry london (2004-2005) model (print campaign)

» Though the family's ancestral seat is technically in Leicestershire, the estate had fallen into sad disrepair by the 1930s and the country house was torn down in 1952.

» Resides in a 2-bedroom top-floor flat in a thoroughly renovated warehouse in Shoreditch, a neighbourhood which is now thoroughly gentrified and fashionable but was a lot sketchier when he bought the place back in 2005.

» Despite his known aptitude for academics, will never live down the fact that his math skills bottlenecked somewhere between long division and advanced algebra; in fact, he still has trouble doing sums in his head.

» Considers his primary mode of transportation when home in London to be a Honda CBR1000RR; the Jaguar XKR-S that was gifted to him has more or less become his sister's.

» Is infamous in certain Hollywood circles for being "principled" (or if you want to be less flattering, "difficult"), a reputation stemming from not-entirely-accurate anecdotes about how he cussed out top Disney executives who sicced a bona fide babysitter on him in order to ensure he remained on-script while promoting The Prestige.