Sonntag, 27. November 2005

Let me introduce: Thomas Kretschmann, actor

I’m probably gonna sound like I’m just jumping on the bandwagon now or whatever you call that (because he’s been getting a lot of media attention recently, I think) but I’ve really known and liked this actor for a very long time. He’s in the upcoming remake of King Kong, directed by Peter Jackson from the LotR trilogy. I had heard about this project, but didn’t realize it was coming out so soon (December 14) until a couple of days ago. I haven’t seen the old King Kong movie so I don’t think I’ll watch the new one, but anyway, Thomas Kretschmann is definitely worth mentioning so here goes:

He’s 43, but looks younger, I think. More like 37. He’s got 3 kids, but that’s all he said about that in a recent TV interview. I don’t think he’s married and I have no idea who the mother of his children is or if they’ve all got the same mother. He was a professional swimmer in the former GDR, i.e. Eastern Germany. He couldn’t stand the political system so he ran away in 1983. He said he knew there were 3 options: making it, being imprisoned or being shot dead. He didn’t tell anyone about his plans and he was aware that he might never see his friends and family again. So it certainly was a tough decision to make. Thanks to the wall coming down and the following German reunification he could see them all again. Kretschmann got to West Germany via Hungary and Yugoslavia or something. Sounded like quite an adventure in the interview I saw.

Anyway, I’ve seen him in many films on German TV. I can’t remember any particular one at the moment, but he’s a good actor. He’s also been in quite a number of international productions, such as The Pianist by Roman Polanski (for which Adrien Brody got an Oscar, I think). Kretschmann’s part was smaller than I expected, unfortunately. He was also in U-571 (with Jon Bon Jovi and Matthew McConaughey) and he said these 2 films were the reason why Peter Jackson wanted him for King Kong. He will be on US TV soon in a movie about Pope John Paul II, or rather, he plays the Pope. Oh, and he was in Der Untergang (Downfall, about Hitler’s last days) which was nominated for Best Foreign Language Film at the Oscar’s last year.

In the TV interview I noticed quite a few things Kretschmann seems to have in common with Christian Bale: they’re both not good at auditions cos they can get into their parts much better when they’re in their costumes on the set. And they both seem to be very dedicated and determined actors. I hope these two will be in a film together someday.

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