Most famous internationally for Der Legende von Paul und Paula (The Legend of Paul and Paula) (1973), the most successful film made in East Germany, Heiner Carow was a director who seemed happy to embrace controversy. In that vein, his most debatable film was the documentary Coming Out (1989), the first film to deal openly with homosexuality. The film received a Silver Bear at the following year's Berlin Film Festival. Carow learned his craft by making educational films until he joined Berlin's DEFA Studios in 1956 and began making youth-oriented pictures. Shortly after the Berlin Wall fell and Germany reunified, Carow became a television director. Carow died of undisclosed causes on January 31, 1997.