German thesp to star in ZDF's 'Family'

BERLIN — Veteran German thesp Hardy Kruger, who despite being a member of the Hitler Youth enjoyed a post-war career in Europe and Hollywood, will make a comeback in a ZDF pic after a 13-year absence, the German pubcaster announced on Wednesday.

The 82-year-old Kruger, who co-starred with John Wayne in “Hatari!” (1962) and had a leading role as a Nazi general in “A Bridge Too Far” (1977), will star in the ZDF pic “Die Familie — Blut ist dicker als Wasser” (The Family — Blood Is Thicker Than Water), produced by Oliver Berben’s shingle, Moovie.

Pic began lensing in Berlin, Kruger’s home town, this week.

Kruger, whose blond hair and blue eyes gave him a stereotypical German look, was required to join the Hitler Youth at age 13, like all boys at the time. He turned 17 just before the war ended and spent some time as a POW. After the war, the multi-lingual Kruger became a popular choice of producers from the U.K., France, the U.S. and Germany.

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