From 1970 to 1974 Peter Sehr studies Physics and Chemistry at the Swiss Federal Institute for Technology Zurich (ETH). In his degree dissertation he investigates the application of nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) in biological systems under the special direction of Kurt Wüthrich (nobel prize for chemistry 2002). After he completes his degree he travels throughout South Amercia for one year.
Upon his return he pursues doctoral studies in Biophysics at Oxford University (Merton College) from 1975 to 1979. The theme of his doctoral thesis in the group of George Radda examines the application of NMR in intact biological stystems. Today, this procedure is used in clinical diagnostics throughout the world and is widely known under the name of MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging).
During this period, he runs the University Film Society and makes his first short films, "To Shoot a Bicycle", "He May Have Cut His Throat" and "A Group of People".
In 1980, Sehr moves to Paris, where he spends two more years with research of Biophysics at the Institut Curie. At the same time, he begins to work as 1st AD.
In 1982, he stops altogether with science and moves to Munich, where he works with various German and French directors as 1st AD.
In 1988, Sehr founds P’ARTISAN Filmproduktion GmbH with Marie Noëlle. He writes, produces, and directs “Und nicht ein Tohuwabohu”, a feature documentary.
In 1991, he releases his second feature, “The Serbian Girl” ("Das Serbische Mädchen"), nominated for the 1991 German Film Prize (Best Film) and awarded the main prize at the Film Festival of Uppsala.
In 1994, Sehr’s internationally successful “Kaspar Hauser; Crime Against a Man's Soul” receives three Gold Ribbons for Best Film, Best Director, and Best Actor at the German Film Prizes, as well as several international film awards. Kevin Thomas of the LA Times described “Kaspar Hauser” as "a tour-de-force of wit, originality and poignancy".
Sehr’s next feature film, “Obsession”, with Heike Makatsch, Daniel Craig and Charles Berling, was shot on location in Berlin, France, and Niagara Falls during the Summer of 1996 and was released theatrically in 1997. This film was also nominated as ‘Best Film’; for the German Film Prize and was screened at the 1997 Sundance Film Festival.
Sehr’s feature “Love the Hard Way' was shot in New York with Adrien Brody, Charlotte Ayanna, John Seda and Pam Grier. He received the "Silver Leopard" at the Locarno Festival of 2001, the Bavarian Filmprize for ‘Best Director’; and it was also shown at the Sundance Filmfestival.
In 2002 he produces with Les Films Alain Sarde/Paris and Heritage Film/Poland in Auschwitz and Paris Marceline Loridan-Ivens’ Film “The Birch Tree Meadow” ("La Petite Prairie aux Bouleaux").
His latest feature "The Anarchist's Wife", which he co-produces and co-directs with Marie Noëlle who wrote the screenplay, receives the Bernhard Wicki Award 2008 – German Cinema Award for peace. This Film was also shown at the Sundance Filmfestival 2009 and many others. The project is a German -French -Spanish co-production.
In 1989, Peter Sehr starts teaching at the Munich Film School HFF, and in 1998 at the Filmakademie Baden-Württemberg. Since 2001, he is with Jan Schütte on the German side and Marc Nicolas as well Christine Ghazarian on the French side head of "Atelier Masterclass", a one-year postgraduate study for young European producers, that takes place at "La Fémis" in Paris and the Filmakademie Baden-Württemberg.
In June 2001, Peter Sehr, Marie Noëlle and Dagmar Hirtz take over the renowned ARRI Cinema in Munich which is now member of "Europa Cinemas".
2002, Peter Sehr co-founds with Daniel Toscan du Plantier, Brigitte Sauzay and Magaret Menegoz the "German-French" film meeting whose goal it is to encourage collaboration of both film industries and the exchange of films. Margaret Menegoz ist president and Kirsten Niehuus and Peter Sehr are both vice president.
Peter Sehr was given knighthood by the French Minister of Culture for Art and Literature (Chevalier de l'ordre des Arts et Lettres) in 2005 and is member of the German, the German-French and European film academy.
Two more feature film projects are in the works. Ludwig II of Bavaria, to be produced by Bavaria Pictures, for which Peter is currently working on the script, and a story about Georg Lichtenberg, the famous German author and first professor for experimental physics, which he his developing with Hans Magnus Enzensberger.