Line of Separation tells the story of the small German town of Tannbach as the Cold War's Iron Curtain descends upon Eastern Europe, dividing the little town in twain. A microcosm of the events following World War II, Line of Separation looks at how the Cold War affected communities, friends and even families.

A powerful short series that delves deep into a period in history that’s often overlooked, Line of Separation becamean instant Passport favorite for the Drama Club. By turns suspenseful, heartrending, and hopeful, the show features compelling period-appropriate costuming and sets — and an even more compelling cast. While they aren’t household names here in the U.S., it quickly became clear that cast members of Line of Separation are an exciting mix of seasoned professionals and up-and-comers.

Johanna Bittenbinder, the face of Kathi Schober on the show, has made a good career for herself in German film and television, with a couple of turns on the German long-standing detective procedurals The Old Fox and Tatort, both of which are closing in on their 50th seasons. She also landed a bit part in Dark Valley, an action drama starring Sam Riley.

Walter Imhoff is skillfully played by Jonathan Berlin, an actor with lots of television and plenty of film shorts under his belt. We expect to see a lot more from this young man in the future.

An older man and young woman look out into the distance.

Period pieces have become old hat to Henriette Confurius, the young woman who takes on the role of Anna von Striesow. Not yet thirty, the actress has had roles in Julie Delpy’s The Countess and the World War II drama Wir sind wieder wer, and also starred in Beloved Sisters, which was nominated for a Golden Bear at the 64th Berlin International Film Festival.

Georg von Striesow is portrayed by Heiner Lautherbach, a man of many talents. Aside from acting in a slew of German films and television shows, he has also written and directed a TV movie, Andersrum, and an episode of Eurocops, as well as produced two films. Like many of the performers in this series, he has made several turns on Tartort, and had a reoccurring character on the Law-and-Order-like The Old Fox in the ‘80s, as Polizeibeamter Wagner.

Martina Gedeck, portraying Hilde Vöckler, is probably the best known actress from Line of Separation. She starred in the 2008 films The Baader Meinhof Complex and Mostly Martha, as well as landing bit parts in Night Train to Lisbon, with Jeremy Irons, and The Good Shepherd, Robert De Niro’s second directorial effort.

A group of men and one women face an officious looking soldier who has his back to the camera.

Also appearing in The Baader Meinhof Complex was Alexander Held, the face of Franz Schober in Line of Separation. Held also appeared in Downfall with Bruno Ganz, The Old Fox (of course!) as well as taking on a leading role in Sophie Scholl: The Final Days.

Heinrich Schober is played by Florian Brückner, who has been dipping a toe into international productions: Paul W.S. Anderson’s The Three Musketeers, Faust (2011), and Dark Valley, much like his Line of Separation co-star Johanna Bittenbinder.

Inga Busch took the lead of Sophie Schmitt in 2009’s Ghosted, the story of a queer German artist as she enters into a romance following the death of her partner. Busch has also appeared in Tatort, The Old Fox, and had a small part in the absolutely gonzo horror film Killer Condom. In Line of Separation she plays Cilly Imhof.

Wowo Habadank is Hubertus Prantl. And while his film and television resume may be shorter than some of his Line of Separation co-stars, (though he of course has the apparently required appearances on Tatort and The Old Fox) that’s because he’s been busy acting on stage and radio. In 2000, he co-founded the non-linear theater company Plasma, which strives to blur the lines between theater, music and visual art.

A woman and man embrace at a checkpoint. They are surrounded by soldiers.

Lisa Prantl is portrayed by Senta Auth, an actress who, much like Habadank, splits her time between stage and screen, comedy and drama. She’s perhaps best known for her role in the Bavarian sitcom Dahoam is Dahoam, which follows the daily happenings in a small German town. But perhaps her most impressive role is that of Heidi in the 2008 staging of The Justice of Wolves starring Michael York.

While you might not know the name Max Hopp, the man who portrays Erwin Fichte on Line of Separation, one of the shows on his resume will look pretty familiar to British television fans: Doktor Martin, in which Hopp co-stars, is the German remake of the classic Britcom Doc Martin.

Finally, we have Maximilian Brükner, the actor behind Gustl Schober. While he had a bit part in War Horse, he went on to have a larger role in Sophie Scholl: The Final Days, and to portray Martin Luther in the TV mini-series Reformation. Not to mention — you guessed it — a reoccurring role on Tatort as Franz Kappl.

Line of Separation truly has it all: art direction, drama, and a cast filled with talented performers. Check it out now on Passport, or broadcasting on WGBX 44.