Christoph Waltz is an Austrian-German director, actor, mainly works in the United States.
Waltz was born on October 4, 1956, in Vienna, Austria. Waltz belongs to a family of theatrical heritage. His father Johannes Waltz was a German set designer, and her mother Elisabeth Urbancic was an Austrian costume designer.
His maternal grandmother Maria Mayen was a silent film actress while his step-grandfather, Emmerich Reimers, and Georg Reimers, his great-grandfather, were stage actors and also appeared in silent films.
Rudolf von Urban, waltz’s maternal grandfather was a psychiatrist and a student of Sigmund Freud and also wrote the book “Sex Perfection and Marital Happiness” in 1949.
Waltz was only seven years old when his father died. Later his mother married Alexander Steinbrecher, a composer, and conductor. Director Michael Haneke and Waltz shared the same stepfather as Steinbrecher was previously married to Haneke’s mother.
Waltz first saw opera when he was ten years old and fell in love with it. Waltz would visit the opera in his teens twice a week. He didn’t have an interest in theatre rather he wanted to be an opera singer.
Waltz graduated from Vienna’s Theresianum and attended the Max Reinhardt Seminar to study acting. He also studied singing and opera at the University of Music and Performing Arts Vienna at the same time. Eventually, he realized his voice isn’t good enough for an opera career. He also spent some time, training in acting, in New York City.
After returning to Europe, Waltz started work as a stage actor. He made his debut in acting at the Schauspielhaus, Zurich. Soon he became a prominent television actor from 1980 to 2000.
Waltz starred as Dr. Hans-Joachim Dorfmann in The Gravy Train, the British TV series in 1990, which depicts the story of misdeeds in European Union offices in Brussels.
Waltz played the role of courteous, Clever, multilingual, self-serving and murderous SS-Standartenführer Hans Landa, “The Jew Hunter” in Quentin Tarantino’s Inglourious Basterds.
Tarantino admired Waltz for Inglourious Basterds stating:
“I think that Landa is one of the best characters I’ve ever written and ever will write, and Christoph played it to a tee. It’s true that if I couldn’t have found someone as good as Christoph I might not have made Inglourious Basterds”
Some other of his acting credits include Headstand, Fire and Sword, Wahnfried, Quicker Than the Eye, Love Scenes from Planet Earth, The Mysterious Stranger and No Time to Die.
Christoph Waltz won Best Actor Award at Cannes Film Festival 2009.
He also received the British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) Award and Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor.
He debuted his directional career in 2000 with Wenn man sich traut, a German television production. He is also the director of Georgetown.
Waltz married Jackie, a psychotherapist originally from New York and has three children from Jackie. The couple lived in London but their marriage lasted 17 years. Waltz then married German costume designer Judith Holste. They have a daughter and divides their time among Los Angeles Berlin.
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