Fritz Wepper

Fritz Wepper (born 17 August 1941, Munich, Germany) is a German film and television actor. He is best known for his role as Inspector Harry Klein in the long-running crime series Derrick (1974-1998). Wepper is also remembered for his roles in the films Cabaret (1972) and The Bridge (1959) and as Mayor Wöller in the TV series Um Himmels Willen (since 2002).

Fritz Wepper
Fritz Wepper in 2006
Born (1941-08-17) 17 August 1941
Nationality Germany
Years active1952-
Spouse(s)Angela von Morgen (1979-2019, her death)
WebsiteOfficial website

Life and career

Fritz Wepper was born as the son of a lawyer who was missing in action as a soldier in Poland in 1945. He started his acting career in a production of Peter Pan at the age of eleven. He got his first important film role in Tischlein deck dich, a film adaption of the Brothers Grimm fairytale The Wishing Table. His breakthrough role was as a young soldier in Bernhard Wicki's anti-war film Die Brücke (1959) which won the Golden Globe Award for Best Foreign Language Film. Wepper kept his popularity with German audiences into adulthood and appeared in several notable German films of the 1960s. In 1972 he played Fritz Wendel, a Jew passing as a Christian, in the Oscar-winning film version of Cabaret, opposite Liza Minnelli and Marisa Berenson.

His character Harry Klein, the assistant in the long-running crime series Derrick, became a cult figure all over the world. He played this role between 1974 and 1998 in 281 episodes of Derrick. Before playing Klein in Derrick he portrayed the same character on the popular television drama Der Kommissar (1969–1976) from the series' start until 1974 when he was transferred to Derrick. Harry Klein was replaced by his brother Erwin (played by Fritz Wepper's real-life brother Elmar Wepper).

Fritz and Elmar Wepper appeared together in the television series Zwei Brüder (1994-2000), playing a pair of different brothers hunting criminals and solve difficult cases. Since 2002, Wepper plays the sneaky and sly, but ultimatively good-hearted Mayor Wolfgang Wöller in the TV series Um Himmels Willen, which is one of the most-watched German television series with some 7,2 million views per episode.

Personal life

Wepper married Angela von Morgan in 1979. His daughter, Sophie is also an actress, they appear together in the crime series Mord in bester Gesellschaft since 2007. Wepper made headlines in the yellow press when he left his wife Angela for the younger Susanne Kellermann (born 1974) in 2009. He has a daughter (born 2012) from the relationship with Kellermann, but later returned to his wife. Angela von Morgan died in January 2019, aged 76, following a cerebral haemorrhage.[1]

Since they met during the filming of Cabaret in 1971, Wepper and Liza Minnelli are close friends.[2][3]

Selected filmography

  • The Dark Star (1955)
  • Tischlein deck dich (Table, Donkey and Stick) (1956) .... Michel mit der grünen Kappe
  • Rübezahl - Herr der Berge (1957) .... (uncredited)
  • Eine verrückte Familie (1957) .... Hermann Bunzel
  • Zwei Matrosen auf der Alm (1958) .... Friseurlehrling
  • Der Pauker (1958) .... (uncredited)
  • Der Engel, der seine Harfe versetzte (1959)
  • Die Brücke (The Bridge) (1959) .... Albert Mutz
  • My Schoolfriend (1960) .... Paul (uncredited)
  • Question 7 (1961) .... Heinz Dehmert - Jugendführer
  • Miracle of the White Stallions (1963) .... Rider Hans
  • The River Line (1964) .... Philip
  • Three Rooms in Manhattan (1965) .... Fabien (uncredited)
  • Wenn es Nacht wird auf der Reeperbahn (When Night Falls on the Reeperbahn) (1967) .... Till Voss
  • The Doctor of St. Pauli (1968) .... Hein Jungermann
  • Das Go-Go-Girl vom Blow-Up (1968) .... Peter Mertens
  • Der Kommissar (1968–1974, TV Series) .... Harry Klein
  • The Man with the Glass Eye (1969) .... Lord Bruce Sheringham
  • On the Reeperbahn at Half Past Midnight (1969) .... Till Schippmann
  • Slap in the Face (1970) .... Peter Terbanks (voice, uncredited)
  • We'll Take Care of the Teachers (1970) .... Hubert Böhm
  • The Games (1970) .... Gregorye Kovanda
  • Schmetterlinge weinen nicht (1970) .... Hans Engelmann
  • Nachbarn sind zum Ärgern da (1970) .... Jürgen
  • Cabaret (1972) .... Fritz Wendel
  • Sie nannten ihn Krambambuli (1972) .... Momme Linnau
  • Der Ehefeind (1972)
  • Derrick (1974–1998, TV Series) .... Harry Klein
  • Le Dernier Combat (The Last Battle) (1983) .... Captain
  • Zwei Brüder (Two Brothers) (1994–2001, TV Series) .... Christoph Thaler
  • Drei in fremden Betten (1996, TV Movie) .... Otto König
  • Die blaue Kanone (1999, TV Movie) .... Harry Groß
  • Murder on the Orient Express (2001, TV Movie) .... Wolfgang Bouc
  • Vera Brühne (The Trials of Vera B.) (2001, TV Movie) .... Rechtsanwalt Dr. Wallner
  • Hochwürden wird Papa (2002, TV Movie) .... Oskar Lindner
  • Um Himmels Willen (2002–2020, TV Series) .... Wolfgang Wöller
  • Männer im gefährlichen Alter (2004, TV Movie) .... Henry Malek
  • Derrick - Die Pflicht ruft! (2004) .... Harry Klein (voice)
  • Ein Engel namens Hans-Dieter (2004, TV Movie) .... Hans-Dieter Anhäuser
  • Rikets Røst (2007, TV Series) .... Harry Klein
  • Ein unverbesserlicher Dickkopf (2007, TV Movie) .... Balthasar Pelkofer
  • Mord in bester Gesellschaft (2007-2017, TV Series) .... Dr. Wendelin Winter
  • Unser Mann im Süden (2008, TV Series) .... Konsul Heinrich Hammerstein
  • Baby frei Haus (2009, TV Movie) .... Kurt Schollwer
  • Lindburgs Fall (2011, TV Movie) .... Peter Lindburg

References

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