Gert Fröbe

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Gert Fröbe
Gert Froebe Marke.jpg
Gert Fröbe as he appeared on a 2000 German stamp
Born Karl Gerhart Fröbe
(1913-02-25)25 February 1913
Oberplanitz (now Zwickau), Saxony, German Empire
Died 5 September 1988(1988-09-05) (aged 75)
Munich, Bavaria, West Germany
Cause of death
Heart attack
Nationality German
Occupation Actor
Years active 1948–1988
Spouse(s) Karin Kuderer-Pistorius (1970–?)
Beate Bach (1962–1968)
Hannelore Görtz (1953–1959)
Tatjana Iwanow (one child)
Clara Peter (one child)

Karl Gerhart Fröbe, better known as Gert Fröbe (German pronunciation: [ˈɡɛɐt ˈfʁøːbə]; 25 February 1913 – 5 September 1988), was a German film actor known for his work as Auric Goldfinger in the James Bond film Goldfinger, as Peachum in The Threepenny Opera, as Baron Bomburst in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and as Hotzenplotz in Der Räuber Hotzenplotz.

Early life[edit]

Karl Gerhart Fröbe was born in Oberplanitz, today part of Zwickau. He was initially a violinist, but he abandoned it for Kabarett and theatre work.[1]

He joined the Nazi Party in 1929 at the age of 16 and left it in 1937.[2] During the Nazis' reign, he aided two German Jews by hiding them from the Gestapo.[3]

Acting career[edit]

Fröbe gained fame in one of the first German movies made after World War II, called Berliner Ballade (The Ballad of Berlin, 1948). His role as "Otto Normalverbraucher" (lit. Otto Average Consumer), became a German term equivalent to "Average Joe" or "Joe Bloggs".[4] In 1958, he was cast as the villain in the Swiss-German film Es geschah am hellichten Tag (It Happened in Broad Daylight), which was turned into a novel by Swiss author Friedrich Dürrenmatt. His role as a serial killer of children drew the attention of the producers of the 1964 James Bond movie Goldfinger and he was chosen to play one of the most well-remembered villains of the series, gold tycoon Auric Goldfinger. Because of his former membership in the Nazi Party, Goldfinger was initially banned in Israel until a Jewish family he had protected during the war came forward and thanked him for saving their lives.[3]

Fröbe made several appearances in all-star casts in the 1960s, including the films The Longest Day, Is Paris Burning?, Monte Carlo or Bust, and Those Magnificent Men in their Flying Machines. Because of his thick German accent, Fröbe was dubbed in some of his classic roles, also by American sitcom-star Roger C. Carmel in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and British actor Michael Collins in Goldfinger. He also appeared in $ (1971) with Goldie Hawn and Warren Beatty. During the 1980s, Fröbe played small parts in Mercedes Benz W123 commercials, helping to promote the coupé and the sedan.[citation needed]

Besides acting, Fröbe was a prolific reciter of lyric poetry, especially that of Christian Morgenstern and Joachim Ringelnatz.[citation needed]

Fröbe died in Munich in September 1988 at age 75 from a heart attack.[citation needed]

Selected filmography[edit]

Year Film Role Notes
1948 Berliner Ballade Otto Normalverbraucher
1953 Salto Mortale
1954 The Eternal Waltz Gawriloff
1955 Dunja
Heroes and Sinners (it)
1956 Winter in the Woods Gerstenberg
1957 The Mad Bomberg
Robinson soll nicht sterben (de) Mr. Gillis
Typhon sur Nagasaki
He Who Must Die Patriarcheos
The Heart of St. Pauli
1958 It Happened in Broad Daylight Schrott
Nasser Asphalt Jupp
Das Mädchen Rosemarie (de) Willy Bruster
1959 Old Heidelberg Doctor Jüttner
Prisoner of the Volga Professor
Und ewig singen die Wälder (de) Dag
Menschen im Hotel Preysing
1960 The High Life Doctor Kölling
The Thousand Eyes of Dr. Mabuse Inspector Kras
Der Gauner und der liebe Gott (de) Paul Wittkowski
1961 The Green Archer Abel Bellamy
The Return of Doctor Mabuse [note 1] Kommissar Lohmann USA screening in 1966
Auf Wiedersehen Angelo Pirrone
Via Mala Jonas Lauretz
1962 The Longest Day Unteroffizier Kaffeekanne
Redhead Kramer
Die Dreigroschenoper (de) Peachum
1963 Le Meurtrier (fr) Melchior Kimmel
Banana Peel (fr) Raymond Lachard
1964 Greed in the Sun Castigliano
Goldfinger Auric Goldfinger Dubbed into English by Michael Collins.
Tonio Kröger Policeman Peterson
1965 Those Magnificent Men in their Flying Machines Colonel Manfred von Holstein
A High Wind in Jamaica Dutch Captain
Who Wants to Sleep? Emil Claasen
1966 Du rififi à Paname (fr) Walter
Ganovenehre (de) Importen-Paul
Is Paris Burning? General Dietrich von Choltitz
Triple Cross Colonel Steinhager
1967 Jules Verne's Rocket to the Moon Professor von Bulow
I Killed Rasputin Grigori Rasputin
1968 Chitty Chitty Bang Bang Baron Bomburst
1969 Monte Carlo or Bust [note 2] Willi Schickel / Horst Muller
1971 $ Mr. Kessel
1972 Ludwig Father Hoffmann
1974 Der Räuber Hotzenplotz (de) Hotzenplotz
And Then There Were None Wilhelm Blore Dubbed into English by Robert Rietti.
Nuits Rouges Commissaire Sorbier
1975 Docteur Justice (fr) Max Orwall
1976 Death Rite Vestar
1977 The Serpent's Egg Inspector Bauer
1978 Der Schimmelreiter (de) Tede Volkerts
1979 Bloodline Inspector Max Hornung
1980 The Umbrella Coup Otto Krampe ("Whale")
1982 The Falcon Jug Bogdan
1986 The Little Vampire (TV series) Detective Gurrmeyer

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Also known as The Phantom Fiend.
  2. ^ Also known as Those Daring Young Men in Their Jaunty Jalopies.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Fokart, Burt A. (September 7, 1988). Obituary: "Gert Frobe, 75; Portrayed Goldfinger in Bond Movie". Los Angeles Times.
  2. ^ kultiversum.de. (February 2nd, 2010 (retrieved 11-30-2010)). Hotzenplotz und Pickelhaube.
  3. ^ a b "Gert Frobe, an Actor, Dies at 75". Associated Press/The New York Times. (September 6, 1988)
  4. ^ Deutsches Bühnen-Jahrbuch - Google Bücher. Books.google.de. Retrieved 2011-08-25. 

External links[edit]