Despair was shown at the 64th International Film Festival in Cannes – where Fassbinder’s version of the Nabokov novel received its first screening in 1978.

Recently restored under the supervision of the cinematographer Michael Ballhaus, the new print of Despair was included in the Cannes Classics section of the Festival. It is also expected to be part of the forthcoming season of Dirk’s films at BFI Southbank, and will shortly be available as a DVD.

Although he was unhappy with the director’s cut, Dirk took lasting pride in his performance as Hermann Hermann, the deeply troubled owner of a chocolate factory.