Austria: Ottfried Fischer

There have never been any lean years for Ottfried Fischer, a true heavyweight in the acting business, above all in the field of political reviews. His many leading roles in TV series have won him a spot in viewers' hearts.

Born on November 7, 1953 in Ornatsod in the Bavarian Forest (near the border to Austria's Muhlviertel), Ottfried Fischer grew up on his father's farm and attended the Furstenzell Monastery boarding school near Passau. He began a degree in law in Munich, but abandoned it after a year or two in favour of the stage. In 1978, with a few friends, he founded the "Machtschattengewachse" cabaret in the Hinterhoftheater in Munich, from then on pursuing a career mainly as a review artist. Together with the satirist Jockel Tschiersch, he was a huge success in the Munich "Wirtshaus am Hart" in the 1980s, for which he was awarded the international "Salzburger Stier" prize in 1985 by the German-speaking radio stations in Europe, followed by the "Deutscher Kleinkunstpreis" award in 1986.

Since 1989, Ottfried Fischer has also had his own solo shows ("Schwer ist leicht was!"/"WAS TUN."). In the mid 1990s he was given his own TV show under the name "Ottis Schlachthof", a political review which he still presents on Bavarian Television, interviewing review artists and giving many a rising talent the first opportunity to appear on TV. It was thanks to the director Franz Xaver Bogner that Ottfried Fischer was given his first major role on TV, in the Bavarian cult series "irgendwie und sowieso" (1986). His reputation beyond the borders of Bavaria was established with the SAT1 series "Ein Bayer auf Rugen" (from 1993 on), in which he played a leading role together with fellow-Bavarian Wolfgang Fierek for many years. 1995 saw the start of "Der Bulle von Tolz", which made Fischer one of the most successful TV detectives. Even when repeated for the fourth time, his performances as Benno Berghammer always lead to a jump in the ratings. Since then he has always had roles that are somehow related to crime-hunting, whether as the reporter in the "Pfundskerl" series or as Father Brown in a German adaptation of the G.K. Chesterton Father Brown stories.

Ottfried Fischer is married with two daughters, and lives in Gauting near Munich. At the Munich Oktoberfest, he is always to be found as guest of honour in the Hacker brewery tent.

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