David Hasselhoff Biography

David Hasselhoff Biography on Monsters and Critics

Summary

"David Michael Hasselhoff" (born July 17, 1952 in Baltimore, Maryland), nicknamed "The Hoff", is an American actor who was best known for his lead roles on "Knight Rider" and "Baywatch". He also crossed over to a successful music career, primarily in Germany, Austria and Switzerland.

Early acting career

Hasselhoff's first major role was portraying Dr. William 'Snapper' Foster, Jr. on the soap opera "The Young and the Restless" from 1975-82. He later went on to star as Michael Knight in the Glen A. Larson-created series "Knight Rider" from 1982 to 1986.

European popularity

While his star rose, fell and rose again in the US, Hasselhoff remained very popular in much of Europe. His music was more popular there than in the US, and his hit song 'Looking for Freedom' became something of an anthem for the defeat of communist regimes in eastern Europe. . This European popularity became something of an in joke, Norm MacDonald was known for stating on numerous occasions that 'Germans love David Hasselhoff' on "Saturday Night Live" and is referenced in the film "Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story" where Hasselhoff is shown as the demanding coach of the German team.

Later career

In 1994, he was scheduled to perform a concert on pay-per-view from Atlantic City. The concert was expected to help reignite his singing career in the United States. On the night of his concert, O.J. Simpson was involved in a police chase on the California highway. Viewership of the concert was significantly lower than expected, due to the live coverage of the chase. Since then, Hasselhoff has not attempted another concert.

In 1996, he was given a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

In 1997, he did a duet with Asia's Songbird, Regine Velasquez. The song was used as the main theme for his 1998 movie 'Legacy'. In the film, he was joined by Filipina actresses, Donita Rose and Chin-chin Guttierez. The film was shot in the Philippines.

Beginning in July 16, 2004, Hasselhoff played the lead role in London performances of "Chicago", for three months and made his Broadway debut in 2000 in the title role of "Jekyll & Hyde".

Hasselhoff has made several self-parodic appearances in movies. He had a major appearance in "The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie", released November 19, 2004, starring as himself (though very much in bygone "Baywatch" character) and meeting SpongeBob and Patrick. Hasselhoff also had another short appearance in the movie "Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story" as the dodgeball coach to the German national dodgeball team. Berating his team after being eliminated from a tournament, he shouts 'Ihr seid alle "Schweine"!' (translated: 'You are all "pigs"!', a common German insult) and smashes a photo of himself in his "Baywatch" attire. In 2004's "Eurotrip", Hasselhoff appears in a fantasy sequence performing his early 90s hit single 'Du'. In a cameo as himself in John Waters' 2004 effort "A Dirty Shame", Hasselhoff defecates in an airplane's washroom. The 2006 Adam Sandler film "Click" is the first film in which Hasselhoff plays a character, as Sandler's despicable boss.

In his music video for 'Jump in My Car', Hasselhoff again demonstrates a penchant for self-parody, this time of his performance as Michael Knight in "Knight Rider". The car in the video was a black Pontiac Trans Am with a pulsing LED and an interior nearly identical to that of K.I.T.T. (this video was shot in Sydney, Australia and used a right hand drive KITT replica), including an aptly-timed use of K.I.T.T.'s seat ejection system. The video plays to a skit where he asks one of three girls to 'jump in his car' to take her home. The girl initially refuses but then gets in so long as he behaves politely. She suggests that he should drive quickly, because she lives down south, 'about 84 miles'. When she insists she is not joking, he asks her to leave the vehicle, but she refuses, so he resorts to using the ejector seat to cause her to exit.

Hasselhoff presented a musical award with Gretel Killeen for the Australian Recording Industry Association on Sunday October 23, 2005 in Sydney. He was recently signed to Pepsi appearing in a massive outdoor campaign in January 2006. He was scheduled to tour Australia with his band mid-2006.

Hasselhoff has also become something of an Internet phenomenon, mostly as a subject of fun. Numerous websites have appeared and there is currently a campaign to get him a number one single in the UK.

In May 2006, Hasselhoff returned to the spotlight after he was mentioned in an interview of Dirk Nowitzki, an NBA star playing for the Dallas Mavericks and a native of Germany. Nowitzki was asked what he does to concentrate when shooting foul shots. Dirk replied that he sings 'Looking for Freedom' to himself. He meant this as a joke but it was thought to be a serious answer. Shortly thereafter, Hasselhoff attended the May 26, 2006 Mavericks home playoff game where they faced the Phoenix Suns in the NBA Western Conference Finals. Interviewed by Craig Sager, Hasselhoff stated he was as much a fan of Nowitzki as Nowitzki was a fan of him. In The 2006 NBA Finals, fans of the Miami Heat in the American Airlines Arena held up facial photos of Hasselhoff and chanted his name when Nowitzki went to the foul line.

Late 2006, a musical based on his life called "David Hasselhoff: The Musical" will open in Australia before moving to the United States. Hasselhoff describes it as 'totally campy'. (... more)

On August 2, 2006, Hasselhoff (proclaimed himself king of the internet) in a tongue-in-cheek advertisement commercial for Pipex which ironically has attracted some (blunt online criticism) .

In September 2006 he appeared in a radio interview with Gerard Gilroy on The Breakfast Show on Dublin's Newstalk 106, pushed his book on The Tubridy Tonight Show on RTE1, and sang and (spoke) to Grant Lauchlan of (STV) , where he revealed that he would like to play a concert in the future at Scotland's Edinburgh Castle.

In November 2006, Mel Brooks announced Hasselhoff would portray Roger DeBris, the director of the Nazi musical "Springtime for Hitler", in the Las Vegas production of "The Producers". (... more)

Throughout the summer of 2006, Hasselhoff, along with Grammy-winning singer/actress Brandy Norwood and British media icon Piers Morgan was a co-judge on NBC's "America's Got Talent", a program that showcased America's best amateur entertainers. He is currently appearing in the second season of "America's Got Talent" along side Sharon Osbourne and Piers Morgan. On the 2007 season finale, Hasselhoff sang 'This is the Moment.'

In 2007, it was announced that Hasselhoff is starring in a television series pilot for E! called "Tales from the Hoff". Executive produced by "American Idol" host Ryan Seacrest, the comedy follows an aging international star trying to navigate Hollywood life and re-energize his professional and personal life. Although Hasselhoff is portraying a fictional character, elements of the show's concept parallel Hasselhoff's real life.

In November 2007, it was announced that Hasselhoff is currently in a recording studio working on an Oasis covers album to be released in Germany.

Personal life

After moving from Atlanta's Marist High School, Hasselhoff attended and graduated high school at Lyons Township High School in La Grange, Illinois. He studied at California Institute of the Arts in Valencia, California.

Hasselhoff was married to actress Catherine Hickland from March 24, 1984 to March 1, 1989, when they divorced. Their marriage was recreated in Knight Rider Season 4 (Episode "The Scent of Roses" which first aired on January 3, 1986).

Before his divorce with Catherine Hickland, while they were separated, Hasselhoff dated Linda Butsnik, now Linda Morris, of Carrollton, Georgia.

Hasselhoff married actress Pamela Bach on December 9, 1989, and the couple had two daughters, Taylor Ann Hasselhoff (born May 5, 1990) and Hayley Amber Hasselhoff (born August 26, 1992). Although Hasselhoff was raised Roman Catholic, he and his family attended non-denominational church services.

On January 13, 2006, Hasselhoff announced that he was filing for divorce from Bach after 16 years of marriage, citing irreconcilable differences. His publicist has stated that the couple has agreed to an amicable settlement. However, on March 9, 2006, Bach accused Hasselhoff of violent behavior towards her. Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Mark A. Juhas signed the order March 6, 2006 ordering the former "Baywatch" star to stay at least 100 yards (91 m) from Bach except for 'peaceful contacts related to court ordered visitation' of their children. Pamela is seeking sole custody of their two daughters.

Hasselhoff's autobiography "Making Waves" was released in the United Kingdom in September 2006. (In an interview in April 2006,) he promised that the book would present the 'last chapter' regarding controversial elements of his personal life.

Regarding his popularity, David Hasselhoff has said: 'There are many dying children out there whose last wish is to meet me.? (... more)

On June 29, 2006, Hasselhoff suffered an injury when he hit his hand on a glass shelf (some reports say a chandelier) while shaving in his London hotel's gym bathroom. The broken glass severed a tendon in Hasselhoff's right hand, and surgery was performed that day to repair the damage. Hasselhoff was released from the hospital the following day and was reported to be doing fine.

Alcohol problems

Following media attention in 2002 for drinking problems, Hasselhoff attended a rehabilitation clinic. His problems with alcohol abuse apparently continued, as he was arrested on June 5, 2004, on suspicion of misdemeanor driving under the influence. Hasselhoff received bail of $15,000 and the arraignment was postponed to October 28, 2004. On that court day, his lawyer entered a no contest plea while he was absent from the court hearing. Due to California's 'Alcohol Abuse Education and Prevention Assessment' law he was fined $390, and along with other fees, paid a total assumed to be more than $1400. He was sentenced to self-supervised probation for three years, ordered to attend Alcoholics Anonymous meetings twice a week for six months, spend six months in a DUI program (several hundred more dollars), and to perform 200 hours of community service. While his driver's license was restricted for the next 90 days, he could drive only to his work, to take his children to school, and to attend Alcoholics Anonymous meetings.

In 2006, Hasselhoff was allegedly thrown out of a Wimbledon, London court-bar for drinking and rioting. However, Katie Rowley who runs the Wimbledon Championship, denies this.

In a recent interview with the Associated Press, Hasselhoff also denied being ejected by The All England Club. 'The tabloids make so much stuff up,' he said. 'I was at Wimbledon, and they said I was escorted out drunk. ... Absolutely not. I don't drink anymore.'

On July 26, 2006, tabloids reported that Hasselhoff was publicly drunk at Heathrow Airport and was denied boarding a plane by British Airways. The airline only stated that a male passenger had been refused travel after being deemed unfit. The following day Hasselhoff's publicist denied the allegation of Hasselhoff being drunk saying antibiotics had made him sick and that he voluntarily chose not to board the plane.

That video

On May 3, 2007, a home video surfaced of Hasselhoff apparently in mid-stupor. The video showed him shirtless, lying on the floor, drunkenly trying to focus on a Wendy's hamburger in a Las Vegas hotel room. His daughter "Taylor Ann", who shot the video, can be heard saying, 'Tell me you are going to stop, tell me you are going to stop.' The daughter also warned her father that he could be jeopardizing his spot in the Las Vegas production of "The Producers". In the wake of the leaked video Hasselhoff issued a statement saying that it was released deliberately. Hasselhoff claimed that it was filmed by Taylor Ann so that he could see how he appeared and acted when intoxicated.

Hasselhoff's visitation rights with his two daughters were suspended on May 7 2007 because of the video for two weeks, at which point the video's authenticity and distributor was determined. On May 14, 2007, a news report headlined ("Pipex in a pickle: David Hasselhoff drunken antics last straw for $1 billion sale of UK ISP",) questioned whether the video had impacted negatively on the sale of Pipex, a UK broadband and web hosting company. A major TV and newspaper advertising campaign in the UK for Pipex Communications Plc featured Hasselhoff as 'The King of the Internet'. On June 15th, 2007 his attorney Melvin Goldsman, stated that Hasselhoff was awarded primary physical custody and full legal custody of the two girls.

'Get Hasselhoff to Number 1'

On April 21, 2006 fans of David Hasselhoff launched a tongue-in-cheek website 'Get Hasselhoff to Number 1' (... more) in an attempt to generate the momentum required to send the 1989 hit 'Looking for Freedom' to the top of the UK music charts based on Internet downloads of the single. The campaign is ongoing and has attracted attention on British radio and television broadcasts, the British national press (... more) (... more) and on the Internet (... more) (... more) (... more) . Over 40,000 people have signed up so far. When the total number of sign-ups on the site reaches 75,000 the owners of the site will send the 'Hoff Alert' email to all those who have registered alerting them that the time has come to purchase the single. The intention is that the surge in sales generated will propel the former hit to the top spot in the British chart ensuring radio plays and television appearances for Hasselhoff.

'Jump in My Car' in the UK, the 'Get Hasselhoff to Number 1' website switched the single it was promoting from 'Looking for Freedom' to 'Jump in My Car'. BBC Radio 1 DJ Scott Mills has now lent his support to the campaign (... more) , to get 'Jump In My Car' to number one. Since this announcement, Scott Mills has played the record again, whilst describing the accompanying tongue-in-cheek music video.

On October 3, 2006 the Hoff Alert was mailed out to over 40,000 subscribers, instructing them to buy the song in hopes that it would top the UK Singles Chart. Although this did not happen, Hasselhoff promptly gained his highest ever UK chart entry (#3) on October 8, 2006.

Hasselhoff Candid Interview

On 1 September, 2006, Hasselhoff gave a candid interview to "The Guardian". The interviewer wrote 'To spend an hour or so in the company of 'The Hoff' is to feel as if one is inadvertently playing a bit-part in a daytime television soap opera. It is unclear whether this has more to do with the cliched dialogue - 'Life is something that happens when you're making plans', for example - or the way the lines are delivered with either brow-furrowed gravitas or uproarious laughter.'

Hasselhoff spoke of his religious beliefs - 'Amid all the adversity, whenever I had problems, God always said 'Here's "Chicago", here's a book, here's the No. 1 TV show, here's the No. 1 movie, here's a recording deal, here's two million downloads. I'm gonna make you the biggest star in the world, David, and I'm going to give you responsibility with that, and you can either take it or you can fuck it up.' I fucked it up, I've taken it.'

On why his fans warmed to his shows, Hasselhoff stated 'Because I believe the camera photographs your aura, and it also photographs your heart. And I cast "Baywatch" that way. If you look at "Baywatch", just about everybody on that show - even Pamela Anderson - has got a great heart.'

On "Knight Rider" he stated that it was more than a TV show, 'It's a phenomenon. It's bigger than "Baywatch" ever was.' On its success - 'It's because it was about saving lives, not taking lives, and it was how one man can make a difference. And we had a blast making it, and we made sure nobody died on the show. We made sure nobody ever drowned on "Baywatch".'

He describes the acting he has done as 'a little more difficult than if you had a regularly well-written script - like, if I was going to be in, say, "Reservoir Dogs", or "The Godfather", or "Dances with Wolves" or "Lawrence of Arabia" or "ER". I had to talk to a car.'

Filmography

"The Lion Roars Again" (1975) (short subject)

"Revenge of the Cheerleaders" (1976)

"Starcrash" (1979)

"Strong Times" (1988)

"Three Crazy Jerks II" (1988)

"Witchery" (1988)

"Bail Out" (1989)

"The Final Alliance" (1990)

"Neon City" (1992)

"Dear God" (1996)

"Legacy" (1998)

"The Big Tease" (1999)

"The Target Shoots First" (2000)

"Welcome to Hollywood" (2000)

"Layover" (2001)

"The New Guy" (2002)

"Fugitives Run" (2003)

"Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story" (2004)

"A Dirty Shame" (2004)

"The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie" (2004)

"Click" (2006)

"Kickin' It Old Skool" (2007)

"Anaconda 3: The Offspring" (2008)

Stage work

"Chicago" (as Billy Flynn) (London)

"Jekyll & Hyde" (as Dr. Jekyll/Hyde) (Broadway)

"Grease" (as Danny Zucco)

"Jesus Christ Superstar" (as Judas Iscariot)

"The Producers" (as Roger DeBris) (Las Vegas)

"The Rocky Horror Show" (as Doctor Frank N. Furter) (Los Angeles)

Television work

"The Young and the Restless" (cast member from 1975-1982)

"Griffin and Phoenix: A Love Story" (1976)

"Pleasure Cove" (1979) (unsold pilot)

"Semi-Tough" (1980) (unsold pilot)

"Knight Rider" (1982-1986)

"The Cartier Affair" (1984)

"Bridge Across Time" (1985)

"Perry Mason: The Case of the Lady in the Lake" (1988)

"Fire and Rain" (1989)

"Baywatch" (cast member from 1989-2000)

"Knight Rider 2000" (1991)

"The Bulkin Trail" (1992)

"Ring of the Musketeers" (1992)

"Avalanche" (1994)

"Baywatch Nights" (1995-1997)

"Gridlock" (1996)

"Night Man" (1997) (pilot for series)

"Nick Fury: Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D." (1998)

"One True Love" (2000)

"Jekyll & Hyde" (2001)

"Shaka Zulu: The Citadel" (2001)

"Baywatch: Hawaiian Wedding" (2003)

"Still Standing" (2006)

"America's Got Talent" (2006-present)

Discography

Albums released include:

(2005) "David Hasselhoff Sings America Gold Edition"

(2004) "The Night Before Christmas"

(2004) "David Hasselhoff Sings America" - Germany #27, Austria #11

(2000) "Magic Collection"

(1997) "Hooked on a Feeling" - Switzerland #41

(1995) "David Hasselhoff" - US Billboard New Artists #2

(1995) "Looking for ... the Best"

(1994) "Du" - Germany #43, Switzerland #41

(1993) "You are Everything" - Germany #20, Switzerland #27

(1992) "Everybody Sunshine" - Germany #21, Switzerland #17

(1991) "David" - Germany #12, Switzerland #7

(1990) "Crazy for You" - Switzerland #1

(1989) "Looking for Freedom - Germany #1, Switzerland #3

(1989) "Knight Lover" - Switzerland #17

(1985) "Night Rocker"

(1984) "Don't Hassel The Hoff"

Singles released include:

(2006) "Jump in My Car" - Australia #50, UK #3

(1993) "If I Could Only Say Goodbye" - UK #35

(1993) "Wir zwei allein" (Duet with Gwen) - Germany #9, Switzerland #10

(1992) "Everybody Sunshine" - Switzerland #27

(1991) "Do the Limbo Dance" - Germany #12, Switzerland #19

(1990) "Crazy for You" - Germany #18, Switzerland #21

(1989) "Is Everybody Happy?" - Germany #14, Switzerland #8

(1989) "Our First Night Together" - Switzerland #14

(1989) "Looking for Freedom" - Germany #1, Switzerland #1, Austria #1, Netherlands #22

Additionally, the single 'More Than Words Can Say', a duet with Regine Velasquez, was released in the Philippines.

External links

(David Hasselhoff) - Official website

(Hasselhoff-Friends) - Official fan club

Credit

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article about David Hasselhoff.