Hoppe, Rolf


Rolf Hoppe was born in Ellrich, Germany, on December 6, 1930. Though his acting talent was recognized early on, he had to work at his family’s bakery. In his free time, he acted in a small theater group. In 1946, he co-founded a local amateur theater, where his talent as a comedian emerged. Hoppe took private acting classes and was finally accepted at the Staatliche Konservatorium in Erfurt in 1949.


His debut as a professional actor was at the theater in Erfurt in 1950. He then worked at theaters in Halle, Greifswald, Leipzig, Gera, Berlin and Dresden. In the 1980s, Hoppe shared the stage with the famous Austrian actor Klaus Maria Brandauer in Jedermann, at the Salzburger Festspiele.


From the early 1960s on, Hoppe also appeared in East German film and television productions. He was mainly typecast as evil, heavy-weight characters—such as villains in East German Westerns—and he rarely received the opportunity to play more sympathetic roles. In 1965-66, the banning of three films in which he was cast—Fräulein Schmetterling, Der Frühling braucht Zeit and Karla—was a blow to his career.


Hoppe was known for filling both minor and major roles with life. The characters he played—such as King Don Carlos IV, in Konrad Wolf’s film Goya, and the Justice of the Peace in Jede Woche Hochzeitstag—were celebrated by critics as being rich and multi-faceted. He also played as a bank robber in Frank Beyer’s post-WWII comedy Der Bruch alongside Götz George and Otto Sander. After acting in numerous East German film and television productions, Hoppe became internationally known for his performance as the diabolical General Göring in István Szabó’s Academy Award-winning drama, Mephisto, based on Klaus Mann’s eponymous novel. He worked with many important directors, including Klaus Maria Brandauer (Mario und der Zauberer), Peter Schamoni (Frühlingssinfonie), Joseph Vilsmaier (Comedian Harmonists), Michael Haneke (Wer war Edgar Allan?), and Dani Levy (Alles auf Zucker!). His oeuvre includes more than 400 film and television productions.


In 1995, Rolf Hoppe fulfilled one of his dreams: he founded and became the director of the Hoftheater Dresden in his hometown of Weißig. Hoppe, who was also known for his audio plays, died on November 14, 2018.



2017 Zwischen Tod und Leben (Between Life and Death, TV)
2016 Die Blumen von gestern (The Flowers from Yesterday)
2016 Die Pfeiler der Macht (A Dangerous Fortune, TV)

Ohne Dich (Without You)

2011 Niemandsland - Kein Ziel ist zu weit (No Man’s Land: No Goal Is too Far)
2011 Bittere Kirschen (Sour Cherries)
2009 Eine Liebe in St. Petersburg (A Love in St. Petersburg, TV)
2008 Der Besuch der alten Dame (The Visit, TV)
2004 Alles auf Zucker! (Go for Zucker!)
1999 Klemperer – Ein Leben in Deutschland (Klemperer – A Life in Germany, TV mini-series)
1997 Comedian Harmonists (The Harmonists)
1992 Schtonk
1992 Mario und der Zauberer (Mario and the Magician)
1991 Bronsteins Kinder (Bronstein’s Children)
1988 Der Bruch (The Break-In)
1987 Johann Strauss – Der König ohne Krone (Johann Strauss – The Uncrowned King)
1984 Hälfte des Lebens (Half of Life)
1984 Die Grünstein-Variante (The Grünstein Variant)
1983 Frühlingssinfonie (Spring Symphony)
1983 Ärztinnen (Women Doctors)
1981 Die Gerechten von Kummerow (The Just People of Kummerow)
1981 Mephisto
1980 Pugowitza (Pugovitsa)
1977 Jörg Maler, Ratgeb (Joerg Ratgeb, Painter)
1976 Jede Woche Hochzeitstag (A Weekly Wedding Day, TV)
1976 Beethoven – Tage aus einem Leben (Beethoven – Days in a Life)
1974 Hans Röckle und der Teufel (Hans Roeckle and the Devil)
1974 Kit & Co.
1973 Leben mit Uwe (Life with Uwe)
1973 Ulzana
1973 Drei Haselnüsse für Aschenbrödel (Three Wishes for Cinderella)
1973 Die Brüder Lautensack (The Lautensack Brothers, TV mini-series)
1973 Orpheus in der Unterwelt (Orpheus in the Underworld)
1972 Leichensache Zernik (Murder Case Zernik)
1972 Eolomea
1971 Goya (Goya)
1971 Die gestohlene Schlacht (The Stolen Battle)
1969 Tödlicher Irrtum (Fatal Error)
1968 Weiße Wölfe (White Wolves)
1968 Spur des Falken (The Falcon’s Trail)
1968 Hauptmann Florian von der Mühle (Captain Florian of the Mill)
1967 Frau Venus und ihr Teufel (Lady Venus and her Devil)
1967 Ich war neunzehn (I Was Nineteen)
1965-66/2020 Fräulein Schmetterling (Miss Butterfly)
1965 Der Frühling braucht Zeit (Spring Takes Time)
1965/90 Karla (Carla)
1965 Die besten Jahre (The Best Years)

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