Werner Klemperer

Trivia and Quotes

Quotes (13)

  • (on accepting the Klink role) Klemperer: I had one qualification when I took the job. If they ever wrote a segment whereby Colonel Klink would come out the hero, I would leave the show.

  • (his father had asked about Werner's role on Hogan's Heroes) Klemperer: How do you explain? Then he asked me to send him a script. I didn't dare.

  • Klemperer: [My father] believed in the good old-fashioned idea that a son should learn and learn and learn. Acting was not in the learning category, and it took him a long time to accept the idea.

  • Klemperer: For fifteen years I was cast as a villain. My stock in trade a German officer's uniform and a monocle. It helped that I could click my heels smartly and say 'Achtung!' when necessary -- which was almost always. I achtunged my way to the bank.

  • (on Hogan's Heroes) Klemperer: What we are all doing is parody. For an actor, my role is satisfying because it challenges me to develop new little facets of the character. Here and there I can extend his pomposity while never forgetting that he is, basically, just a scared little man. Or, again, I can extend his naivete, or go further with what he believes is cunning. If he were a total idiot, the whole show would fall like a house of cards.

  • (on working with John Banner) Klemperer: We both had little ego trips, but mainly we got along well.

  • Klemperer: There is this musical addiction that I have. It always seems to come to the foreground. Music has always been a conflict. I've always been a frustrated musician.

  • (on typecasting) Klemperer: Sure, an actor takes a chance associating himself with a role for a long time, but I'm a character actor. Character actors usually survive that sort of risk better.

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Trivia (18)

  • Klemperer is portrayed by Kurt Fuller in the movie "Auto Focus."

  • Werner Klemperer was the only member of the Hogan's Heroes cast to win an Emmy.

  • Klemperer is renowned for his work narrating orchestra concerts. Some of these stints were captured for TV, such as PBS's 1990 The Mostly Mozart Festival, 1993's PBS Barenboim Conducts Strauss and a recording with the Milwaukee Symphony in a 1994 performance of Berlioz's Lelio.

  • Klemperer first acted professionally at the Pasadena Playhouse in a production of The Trojan Horse.

  • Klemperer served as a United States Army military policeman in the second World War.

  • Werner Klemperer's immediate family includes his daughter Erika Klemperer Webster, son Mark, and sister Lotte.

  • Klemperer debuted on Broadway in 1947's Heads or Tails.

  • When CBS offered Klemperer the role of Colonel Klink in "Hogan's Heroes," he agreed only if Klink would never succeed in any of his schemes to undermine the Allies.

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