With his performance on the Berlin Wall in 1989, David Hasselhoff was forever recorded in German history. The singer and actor from the USA celebrated his 70th birthday on Sunday. It is still active – and not as popular in any other country as it is in Germany. Hasselhoff was born in Baltimore in 1952. His paternal ancestors immigrated to the United States from near Bremen in 1865.
According to Heselhoff, he was a poor student, but discovered his love for acting early on and took part in many school plays. Later he did acting training. His first leading role since 1975 was in the American television series “The Young And The Restless”, which in this country has the title “Schatten der Passion”.
“I was a bad actor but good looking,” he later says. Hasselhoff achieved world achievement in 1982 with the movie “Knight Rider”. The action series, in which he and his talking robotic car KITT fight for law and order, falls short of many critics, but has been shown in more than 50 countries and is now considered a cult.
At the same time, he began his musical career. His debut album was moderate success in his homeland. However, in Austria, it climbs to the top of the charts. Hasselhoff recorded “Search for Freedom” with producer Jack White in 1989 – and had a huge hit with it. The song is selling in Germany after its appearance on “Wetten, dass..?” Sometimes over 70,000 times a day and it stays at number one in the European charts for weeks. But his music in his homeland does not receive much attention.
According to the singer, the “Anthem of Freedom” was the “search for freedom” of many East Germans. Then comes the fall of the Berlin Wall, and a few weeks later Hasselhof stands on a crane over the Berlin Wall in a leather jacket with flashing lights and sings his biggest hit over the heads of hundreds of thousands of people. Life for him began in 1989, when he sang in “The Wall,” says Hasselhoff. However, he rejects the often ironic later myth that he himself caused the building to collapse.
His leading role as lifeguard Mitch Buchanon in the movie “Baywatch” helped him become even more popular in the ’90s. Although the series failed after the first season, Hasselhoff went on to produce and make it the most successful American television series of the 20th century with nearly a billion viewers in more than 140 countries.
Berlin has been attached to “The Hoff”, as it is often called, throughout his life. In 2013, for example, he demonstrated with thousands of Berliners against the partial destruction of part of the Wall.
The father of his two daughters left Baywatch in 2000 after ten seasons. He followed roles in several television and film productions, but he was no longer able to build on the huge success of the 80s and 90s. It’s the same with his music career.
Hasselhoff inadvertently made headlines in 2007 with a video clip of himself drunk while trying to eat a burger. Hasselhoff later stated that his exit from Baywatch was the cause of his alcoholism. According to his own statements, he successfully treated them.
The singer, who lives in California with his third wife, has long enjoyed a cult status. Years later he returns to work in this country: in 2018, he plays in sold-out homes in Germany, and in 2021 he releases the album “Party Your Hasselhoff” – a big tour is scheduled for next year. “I wish I could do more than celebrate my 70th birthday with 50,000 people at a prom,” Hasselhoff says.
From: APA / AFP
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