In a movie crammed with famous faces, the actor from New Year’s Eve we were talking about was Til Schweiger. As in, “Who the hell is that guy, and why did he make it on the big poster when Alyssa Milano didn’t?”
For one, he plays expectant father James, who’s duking it out against Seth Meyers and Jessica Biel to win $25,000 for the first baby born in 2012. For another, Til may be the odd man out, but he’s not a newbie compared to his twenty castmates. It was easy to come up with five facts since he’s had a pretty successful career. Just not necessarily in America.
1. He’s totally a big deal in Germany: He’s an actor, producer, and director who’s been in the business since 1991. According to the FFA, no other actor has drawn more German audiences to the movies.
2. He’s won two Bambi awards, Germany’s oldest media award for visionary and inspiring works. (And yes, it’s based on the famous fawn.) Other recipients include Christoph Waltz and Kate Winslet.
3. But he’s not well-known only outside of the U.S.: Til has appeared in many recent American films, including King Arthur, Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life, and Inglourious Basterds. His latest project is the comedy This Means War, which stars Chris Pine and Tom Hardy as spies dueling for the affection of Reese Witherspoon.
4. He turned down the chance to be in Saving Private Ryan because he worried that the role, a German soldier who shoots Tom Hanks‘ character, would give Americans an enduring bad image of him.
5. Some sites call Til “the German Brad Pitt” for his rugged looks. It’s also his birthday today! He’s 48.