Joachim Kerzel

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Joachim Kerzel in March 2007

Joachim Kerzel (born December 10, 1941 in Hindenburg ) is a German actor , dubbing , radio play and voiceover speaker . As the German voice of international character actors such as Jack Nicholson , Dustin Hoffman , Dennis Hopper , Robert Wagner , Harvey Keitel , Jean Reno and Anthony Hopkins , he is one of the most prominent speakers in German-speaking countries. He is also known as an audio book interpreter and as an off-speaker in numerous cinema trailers and documentaries. For his synchronization of Jack Nicholson in About Schmidt , Kerzel received the 2003 German Synchronous Award .

Live and act


After fleeing in 1945, Joachim Kerzel grew up in Augsburg and trained as a locksmith and oil heating fitter from 1958 to 1961 . He then did his military service as a radio operator in the German Navy . From 1963 to 1966 he attended the state universities for music and theater in Hanover , where he trained as an actor. In 1965 he made his debut as Lionel in Schiller's tragedy The Maiden of Orléans as part of the Feuchtwangen Cloister Play . After passing the stage maturity examination, a two-year engagement at the Hildesheim City Theater followed . There Kerzel acted as the eponymous protagonist in Wilhelm Tell , as Tellheim in Minna von Barnhelm and in Von Mäusen und Menschen . From 1969 to 1978 he was a member of the State Drama Theaters Berlin and stood there among other Tusenbach in Chekhov's drama Three Sisters and Domingo in Schiller's play Don Carlos . In connection Kerzel worked as a freelance actor and entered as such in particular in the Theater am Kurfürstendamm on , including in comedies such as Friends in Need (1979) and Three Bedrooms (1980) by Alan Ayckbourn , which were directed and televised by Wolfgang Spier . Directed by Rolf von Sydow , Joachim Kerzel starred in Laus im Pelz (1987) alongside Dieter Hallervorden . In 1996 he played Theobald Mask in Carl Sternheim's comedy Die Hose at the Berlin grandstand . From 1989 to 1992 he directed the Intime Theater in Berlin .

Movie and TV

Parallel to his stage work, Kerzel was also sporadically active in front of the camera from the beginning of the 1970s, for example in Wolf Dietrich's multi-part series The Century of Surgeons (1972), in The Purpose Sanctifies the Means (1973), directed by Fritz Umgelter , No detection dogs for den Fiskus (1974) by Thomas Fantl and in Hartmut Griesmayr's literary film adaptation Meister Timpe (1980). In the twelve-part ZDF series Lukas und Sohn (1989) Kerzel portrayed the figure of Karl, he took on episode roles in Café Wernicke (1978), Berliner Weisse mit Schuß (1985), Weiberwirtschaft (1987), These Drombuschs (1992), among others. and most recently in the crime series In the Name of the Law (1996) and Behind Bars - Der Frauenknast (2002).


February 9, 2007: Joachim Kerzel setting the N24 report “Rogue Waves” to music in an editing room.

During the 1980s, Kerzel increasingly shifted his theatrical focus to film dubbing and, through numerous leading roles in commercially successful cinema productions, developed into one of the most famous and high-profile speakers of the present day. Since The Witches of Eastwick (1987) he has been used regularly for the dubbing of Jack Nicholson , since Hook (1991) for Dustin Hoffman and since the early 2000s for Anthony Hopkins . Kerzel has also lent his voice to Dennis Hopper , including in Mad Dog (1976), Blue Velvet (1986), Speed (1994) and Apocalypse Now (2001, Redux version). A selection of other dubbing roles includes Fredric March in the television dubbing of the film adaptation, first performed in 1931, of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde , Harvey Keitel in Die Duellisten (1977) and Das Piano (1993), Jean Reno in Léon - The Professional (1994) and The Purple Rivers (2000) as well as Robert De Niro in Once Upon a Time in America ( 1984) and The Untouchables (1987).

He took on leading series roles for Robert Wagner as Jonathan Hart in Hart but cordially (1979-1984 and 1993-1996) and as Al Mundy in your appearance, Al Mundy (1968-1970), Lloyd Bochner as Cecil Colby in The Denver Clan (1981 –1982) and Vul Kuolun in the 40-part cartoon series Captain Future (1980). Kerzel directed dialogue in the crime series Twin Peaks (1990–1991) and the films Rendezvous with Joe Black (1998), Spy Game - The Final Countdown (2001) and The Manchurian Candidate (2004).


In addition to the dubbing, Kerzel, as an off-speaker, shaped a good two thirds of the German-language cinema trailers as well as numerous documentaries. Since 2005 he can be heard regularly in the kabel eins magazines K1 Extra and K1 Doku , in 2010 he made his voice available to the documentary Untergang der Republik, among other things . In the past, Kerzel also acted as voiceover in the science fiction television series Babylon 5 (1994-1998) , Outer Limits - The Unknown Dimension (1995-2002) and the pseudoscientific magazine offshoot Galileo Mystery (2007-2009).

Audio books

As an audio book interpreter, Kerzel received particular attention with the bestsellers The Leopard (2002), The Pillars of the Earth (2006) and The Gates of the World (2008) written by Ken Follett . In 2008 he was awarded the Audience Award Hörkules and a gold record for Die Säulen der Erde . Another common readings are The Exorcist (2001) by William Peter Blatty and The Fall Mauritius (2003) by Jakob Wassermann and of Stephen King wrote works The Girl (2001), breathing techniques from Different Seasons (2002) and night shift (2008). In the publications Feuerreiter (2004) and Mond und Sterne (2004) Kerzel set ballads and poems by important writers such as Johann Wolfgang von Goethe , Friedrich Schiller and Theodor Fontane to music . Since the mid-1990s, Kerzel has also been reading in all of the works of the French thriller author Jean-Christophe Grangé , e. B. The purple rivers .

Audio and computer games

In the radio play area , Joachim Kerzel is particularly known for the new edition of the radio play series Geisterjäger John Sinclair , which has appeared since 2000 , in which he was engaged as a narrator until episode 46. Health reasons forced a reshuffle in the following eight episodes; Wolfgang Pampel took over the representation . In September 2009 Joachim Kerzel reported back to the audience with a short video message and continued his involvement since episode 55. From episode 71, however, he was replaced by Alexandra Lange . Kerzel was used as a narrator in the radio plays for Star Wars . In the ten CD audio play adaptation of the thriller Der Schwarm (2004) written by Frank Schätzing , he spoke as biology professor Sigur Johanson one of the main characters. The media satire Pitcher ( WDR , 2000), conceived by Walter Filz and awarded the war blind radio play prize , in which Kerzel ironically took on the role of a “worn-out voice actor” , also attracted attention . Joachim Kerzel has been the narrator of the radio play series Takimo - adventures of a star traveler since 2012 .

Kerzel also uses his voice to set computer games to music, including as Archdemon Legion in Shadow Man ( Nintendo 64 ), as Brian Westhouse and Q'aman in The Longest Journey , as Emperor Uriel Septim in The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion , as Lorewalker Cho in World of Warcraft: Mists of Pandaria and as Dr. Blackter in Baphomet's Curse 2.5 .

Private life

Joachim Kerzel was married to the actress Maria Körber until her death in 2018 and lives in Berlin.

Filmography (selection)

Radio plays (selection)

  • 1973: Rolf Dieter Brinkmann : Visit to a dying city - Director: Ulrich Gerhardt ( WDR )
  • 1978: Robert Ivan McKenna: Before Tomorrow Morning (Gary) - Director: Erika Reichenbach ( RIAS Berlin)
  • 1979: Albertine Junker: A man for nuts. Back then it was - Stories from old Berlin (Dr. Cäsar Zeisig, doctor) (story No. 31 in 12 episodes) - Director: Paul Esser (RIAS Berlin)
  • 1982: Johanna von Politz: Glück im Winkel. Back then it was - Stories from old Berlin (Uncle Oskar Neese, criminal investigator) (Story No. 35 in 6 episodes) - Director: Horst Kintscher (RIAS Berlin)



Web links

Commons : Joachim Kerzel  - Collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. Page no longer available , search in web archives: Programs of German-speaking theaters In: Die Zeit . November 2, 1979. (accessed September 27, 2010)@1@ 2Template: Dead Link /
  2. Familiar voices. In: Tagblatt. April 13, 2010 (accessed September 27, 2010)
  3. spokesperson, accessed on January 8, 2012.
  4. The fall of the republic. ( Memento from February 6, 2011 in the Internet Archive ): German synchronization., accessed on January 8, 2012.
  5. Winner of the Hörkule at Hörjuwel (accessed on September 27, 2010)
  6. Report on hö (accessed on September 27, 2010)
  7. Joachim Kerzel is back Video on, accessed on April 6, 2013.
  8. Walter Filz receives the most important radio play award from Deutsche Welle, September 26, 2001 (accessed on September 27, 2010)
  9. Official site (accessed on September 27, 2010)
  10. a b Thomas Nagel: Back then it was - stories from old Berlin. Retrieved July 26, 2020 .
  11. Gold / platinum database of the Federal Association of the Music Industry, accessed on February 21, 2019