Helmut Berger Poster


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Overview (4)

Born in Bad Ischl, Upper Austria, Austria
Birth NameHelmut Steinberger
Nickname Heli
Height 6' 0½" (1.84 m)

Mini Bio (1)

Helmut Berger - Austrian born film actor, mostly known for starring in Luchino Visconti's films, which are now considered modern classics. Born Helmut Steinberger in Salzburg in 1944, he turned down a prospect of running a family hotel business and went to London where he worked as waiter to pay his way through drama school. Later he attended the University of Perugia in Italy and spent some time in France. His acting career began with French and Italian commercials and showed no signs of progress until he was picked up by Luchino Visconti out of pool of "extras" during the shooting of Sandra (1965) in 1964. Berger's relationships with Visconti, whose partner he remained for 12 years, brought him to the attention of press and allowed him to act in some Visconti's films such as The Damned (1969) ("The Damned), Ludwig (1973) and Conversation Piece (1974) ("The Conversation Piece"). Visconti is said to view Berger as the very image of his idea of a "demonic, insane and sexually perverted" man. As a matter of fact Berger often portrayed anguished souls and sinister villains. His acting career continued throughout the 1970s but was temporarily broken up in the early 80s when he battled alcohol problem. He appeared in numerous French, Italian, German films and spent one season on American soap Dynasty (1981) but few directors used his gifts with the same skill as Visconti. His autobiography "Ich" (Me), in which he famously referred to his relationships with Visconti as "marriage" and claimed to be the director's widow, appeared in 1998. Berger is still very active appearing in TV series regularly. He also very modestly attributed his acting achievements to Visconti's directing.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Mike (petrovaz@mail.ru)

Spouse (1)

Francesca Guidato (19 November 1994 - present) ( separated)

Trivia (9)

Lived nearly forty years in Italy, until he returned to his hometown Salzburg in 2004.
Longtime companion of Luchino Visconti from 1964 until the director's death in 1976.
Is mentioned on Jackie Brown (1997).
Infamous for his provocative appearances on German and Austrian TV shows.
He said that after the filming of Ludwig he committed himself to a sanatorium in order to rid himself of Ludwig's character who had taken over his real-life persona.
Tried to commit suicide by an overdose of sleeping pills on 14 March 1977.
Considered for Rudi in Royal Flash (1975). Alan Bates won the role.
Considered for Bukovsky in Lifeforce (1985).

Personal Quotes (1)

[on working with Michael Caine and Glenda Jackson on The Romantic Englishwoman (1975)] I admire Michael Caine in this film and have great respect for Glenda Jackson. She is of a different generation to mine and a different theatrical background. She can be like a bird. I have to run after her. She is so exciting, she gives so much.

See also

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