Hubertus Grimm as Jan Brandner
|Verbotene Liebe character|
|Portrayed by||Andreas Brucker (1995-1997)
Hubertus Grimm (2011-2012)
|First appearance||Episode 1
2 January 1995
|Last appearance||Episode 4000
18 January 2012
|Created by||Reg Watson|
|Introduced by||Ariane Krampe (1995)|
|Book appearances||Novel series 2012|
Andreas Brucker as Jan Brandner
Jan Brandner is a fictional character on German soap opera Verbotene Liebe (Forbidden Love). The character was played from the show's debut on January 2, 1995 to August 27, 1997 by actor Andreas Brucker. In March 2011, the role was surprisingly recast with actor Hubertus Grimm; reinstating the Brandner family and the original story of the show. Grimm debuted in the role on June 23, 2011. The role was reactivated on short-term for a special of the show on the Spanish island Mallorca. The character made his last appearance on January 18, 2012.
Jan returns from Aspen, where he lived and worked as a ski instructor, to celebrate his 20th birthday. The young man, who tried to follow his dreams the last years after school, has a difficult relationship with his father Arno, but can always count on his stepmother Iris and his younger half-brother Florian. At the airport, Jan meets the attractive and young Julia von Anstetten for the first time and falls in love with her. He doesn't know yet which tragic destiny will come to him. Reunited with his family, Jan works as a fitness trainer, which his best friend Oliver Kopp got for him. It doesn't take long for Jan to get into a fight with the owner Fritz Konrad, which leads to his dismissal. Later that day, Arno finds out about it and wants Jan to apologize to Konrad and ask for a second chance. Jan sees that he has no other options at the moment and could really use the job. But when he arrives at the studio he finds Konrad dead in his office. Before he can react, a client walks in and thinks Jan murdered Konrad. He flees and is scared out of his mind and doesn't know what to do. He runs back home, but when his family don't listen to him, he takes off. Jan flees to Fiona Beckmann who is like an aunt to Jan and has looked out for the young man since he was born. He tells her what happened and Fiona doesn't let him down this time either and decides to hide him in the boarding-house she runs. There he also meets Sophie Levinsky who becomes a good friend to him.
While staying hidden in the boarding-house, Jan keeps his interest in Julia. He meets her again and introduces himself as Peter Neumann to hide his identity, while the police are looking for him to arrest him for murder. Soon Jan has to deal with Julia's rich family, who don't make it easy for him. While Julia's stepfather Christoph von Anstetten likes the young man from the beginning, Julia's mother Clarissa and her stepbrother Henning couldn't be more against him as a person and as friend of Julia's. Clarissa makes a happy face to him, while she tries to sabotage Jan and Julia's relationship wherever she can. She wants Julia to marry the rich Gero von Sterneck and not bond with a poor guy she just met. Henning has also problems with Jan as soon as he discovers Christoph's interest and trust in Jan as Christoph never seems to trust Henning. Henning and Clarissa aren't the only ones that try to keep Jan and Julia apart. Fiona is shocked when Jan tells her who he fell in love with and tries to break them up too. She tells Julia that Jan and Sophie are together and have broken up for a short time. But then they reunited because Sophie was expecting his child. Fiona's plan seemed to be working, but her lie gets discovered when an angry Julia confronts Jan. He is shocked and can't believe that Fiona would lie like this. He tries to talk to her when Fiona has a shocking confession to make. Julia isn't just some woman, she is connected to Jan — she is his twin-sister. Fiona tells Jan the entire story. His mother took off with Julia after they were born and left him to Arno. Jan didn't know much about his mother till then and is stunned when Fiona tells him that Clarissa is the woman that abandoned him all those years ago.
With the shocking truth right in front of him, he tries to stay away. But Christoph wants to keep Jan as a stuffer at his stud farm and makes Jan an offer he can't refuse. But Henning discovers Jan's real name and tells Clarissa all about it. She is shocked to hear that his name is Jan Brandner and not Peter Neumann; realizing that he is her son. Henning informs the police, who still believe that Jan killed Fritz Konrad. Meanwhile, Clarissa returns to her past and pays a visit to Fiona. She confirms that Jan is her son and that he unknowingly fell in love with his sister. Threatened by the thought of her past, Clarissa warns Fiona and Jan not to use this to blackmail her. Jan tells her that it was never his intention to do something like that and it would be perfectly understandable to him if Clarissa doesn't want to welcome him as her son. He promises to stay away from Julia and tells her that he wants to leave the Anstetten family anyway. Because Henning told the police about Jan, he needs to run away again and finally concentrates on proving his innocence. It doesn't take him long and Jan finds out that Oliver might something have to do with the murder. He asks Florian for help. Florian finds out that the gym-goers in the studio were provide with anabolic steroids. He informs Jan and also tells Susanne about it. Oliver later confesses to her that he murdered Konrad. He gets arrested and Jan can finally return to the arms of his family.
In the following years, Jan tries to forget about Julia. Among others, he has an affair with Tanja Wittkamp, before following Julia to Lanzarote. Jan and Julia have some great days together, before she goes swimming and never returns. After Julia seems to be dead, Jan dates Kerstin Richter, when he gets a letter from Julia. She tells him that she is alive and lives in Spain, where she wants him to follow her. Happy that Julia is still alive, Jan sees that he never can really love Julia and decides to leave town together with Kerstin to begin a new life in France.
Jan's relationship to Kerstin fails because of the forbidden feelings he still has for his sister. Jan decides to start a whole new life and in the following years becomes a priest at the Roman Catholic Church. He hasn't been in contact with anyone from his family and wasn't even reachable for his father Arno. Clarissa, who spent the last ten years in a South American prison and supposedly died in a plane crash, tries to find out about the life of the twins, but is also unable to find information on Jan. As he takes an offer on the Spanish island Mallorca his past is coming right back as Julia is now living there with her husband Ricardo Mendes and her son Timo, from her marriage with Tim. And both of his parents aren't far behind as they finally want to make up for all the past mistakes.