Spielmann was born in Wels, Austria, and grew up in Vienna. After High School, he lived in Paris for several months. From 1980 to 1987 he studied film direction and script-writing in Vienna at the University of Music and Performing Arts, Vienna. At the Viennese Filmacadamy, his professors included Harald Zusanek and Axel Corti.
After making several short films, and receiving his diploma with Vergiss Sneider!, with the drama Erwin und Julia, Spielmann had his first great success. In 1993, his film Der Nachbar won the Vienna Filmaward at the Viennale. And in 1994, his film for television Dieses naive Verlangen was awarded with the Erich-Neuberg-Preis. In 2006, he was honored with the Upper Austrian Landeskulturpreis in the “Film” section.
Spielmann is one of the most important contemporary Austrian Film directors. His films The Stranger and Antares were the Austrian candidates for Oscar nomination for Best Foreign Language Film. Antares has been screened widely at more than thirty International Film Festivals.
Spielmann is on the committee of the Verband der Filmregisseure Österreichs (the Association of the Austrian film directors).
In the Linzer Kammerspiele (Linz, Upper Austria) he made his debut as Theatre Director with the performance of the play Der einsame Weg, written by Arthur Schnitzler. For the season 2006/2007, he wrote his first play for the theatre, the Landestheater Linz, Imperium, which was first released on January 5, 2007 at the Linzer Kammerspiele.
In January 2009 Spielmann’s Revanche was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film.
Films till date ( Updated Jan 2018)
1990: Erwin und Julia
1993: Der Nachbar
1993: Dieses naive Verlangen
1995: Loveable Lies aka Pretty Lies (Liebe Lügen)
1996: Fear of the Idyll (Die Angst vor der Idylle)
2000: The Stranger (Die Fremde)
2001: Spiel im Morgengrauen
2013: October November