• Germany's news in English
 
app_header_v3

Tom Hanks slates top German TV show

The Local · 5 Nov 2012, 17:25

Published: 05 Nov 2012 11:22 GMT+01:00
Updated: 05 Nov 2012 17:25 GMT+01:00

The Hollywood star, who appeared on Saturday's show along with co-star Halle Berry to promote their new film Cloud Atlas, said afterwards he had never wished for something to be over quicker than he had the current US election campaign - until he was on that show.

Speaking on RBB 88.8 radio station on Sunday, he said anyone in the US who had been responsible for a television show that ran for more than four hours would have been fired.

And on Monday he told Der Spiegel online, "Let me sum it up in one sentence - at one point I was standing around with a funny cat hat on my head and watched as the host hopped around me.

"And the translator was literally saying 'blah blah blah' in my ear. He had given up trying to explain to me which famous German comedian was imitating which other famous German comedian. 'You don't need to know this,' he told me.

"I don't think anyone... wanted to be there for three, four, five hours. How long did it last in the end? But hey it was fun nonetheless."

It was the second outing for the new host of the show Markus Lanz, who Hanks described on air as looking like a greasy banker he could not trust. At the time this was assumed to be an amusing form of joshing with the host, but his comments afterwards made them seem acidic in retrospect.

He told the Hannoversche Allgemeine Zeitung he had no idea what the show was about. "I was on this show a couple of years ago, that time with Leonardo DiCaprio. I didn't understand the show then, and I understand it even less now," he said.

Berry said she could not understand what was going on - not just the concept of celebrities sponsoring weird challenges, such as a woman who said she could distinguish between hundreds of different kinds of nail polish - but because the interpreter speaking through a microphone into her ear was unclear.

She was left even more puzzled by a comment from Lanz, who asked her whether or not it was true that she had a passion for the smell of freshly-cooked meat. "Where did you hear that?" she asked him, only for a co-host to suggest that Lanz stop reading rubbish on the internet.

Hanks was assigned a dentist who said he could tell the difference between 50 different drills - and managed to do so on the television.

The stars - and their publicists - were undoubtedly drawn to the show by its unmatched audience figures - nearly 11 million people tuned in on Saturday, a figure representing a third of the television market. Wetten, dass...? has been running since 1981 and is broadcast live across Germany, Austria and Switzerland. Until last year it was hosted by Thomas Gottschalk, but he left after a contestant was paralysed when his bet, of jumping over a car being driven at him, went wrong.

Story continues below…

Hanks and Berry are in Germany for the European premiere of Cloud Atlas - the most expensive German film ever made. Directed by one of Germany's favourites, Tom Tykwer, along with Lana and Andy Wachowski of Matrix success, the film cost €110 million of largely German money to make and was filmed in Babelsberg studios in Potsdam.

The Local/DPA/hc

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Your comments about this article

13:01 November 5, 2012 by BobbyBaxter
Unfortunately Mr Hanks, this is about as good as German television gets ......
13:47 November 5, 2012 by misschrissy
After living here for 8 years, this is the reason I have no TV. Not all, but most German programming is embarassing and unwatchable!

Tatort excepted, of course.
14:08 November 5, 2012 by steve_glienicke
Been here 22 years, i dont even bother to plug in the antenna for german TV, it's more fun on a friday and saturday evening to watch the grass growing in my garden :)
14:15 November 5, 2012 by Berlin fuer alles
This is not news. It is widely accepted that German TV is unwatchable. Why are we reading about it now? I try to put it out of my mind rather than let IT put me out of my mind.
16:32 November 5, 2012 by reallybigdog
And I hope it remains so as the more people who turn the TV off the healthier they become in mind and spirit!!
21:08 November 5, 2012 by romber58
What can one say.

Any ex pat who has lived here for years like I have has got used to or learned to live with the fact that German humour is crap and watery and childish and only has fans in the other German speaking nations.

Thank goodness that in daily life you can meet individuals who don,t fit the cliche...If it is a cliche.....
Today's headlines
Germany sees 'turning point' in birth rate decline
Children at a a kindergarten in Swabia. Photo: Nikolaus Lenau/Flickr

Is Germany's three-decade decline in birth rate now over?

Trump protesters rebuild and tear down 'Berlin Wall'
The 'Stop Trump' protest at the Brandenburg Gate. Photo: DPA.

US expats gathered at the Berlin's iconic Brandenburg Gate on Friday "rebuild" the Berlin Wall and protest US presidential candidate Donald Trump's own proposed wall-building.

Accusation of sexism within Merkel's party creates uproar
Defence Minister Ursula von der Leyen and Chancellor Angela Merkel, two leading women in the CDU party. Photo: DPA.

A young politician from the ranks of Angela Merkel's Christian Democratic Union (CDU) has caused a storm by suggesting that the party is institutionally sexist.

EasyJet 'in talks to buy German airline' to duck Brexit
Photo: DPA

EasyJet is in talks to acquire TUIfly, a board member of the German carrier said Friday, as the British no-frills airline looks for ways to keep flying freely within the EU after Britain quits the bloc.

Symbols of migrant plight to go on show in Bonn museum
Photo: DPA

A people smugglers' car, a dinghy and a life jacket are among items related to Europe's migration crisis due to go on display at a German museum.

Brexit
Green party demand 'quick and easy' citizenship for Brits
Photo: DPA

The Green party has called for Brits living in Germany to be offered a painless path to obtaining dual citizenship as to "reassure them over the future".

Berlin the new London? 10m2 flat to rent for €750 a month
Photo: Immonet.de.

This shoebox apartment in the gentrified Bergmann-Kiez neighbourhood may be a sign that the tides are turning for Berlin’s comparatively cheap housing market.

Far-right AfD reach record high in national poll
AfD leader Frauke Petry. Photo: DPA.

The Alternative for Germany (AfD) was backed by 16 percent of respondents in a new poll, which was a new high for the upstart populist party.

Bautzen youth beat up pensioner in racist attack
Photo: DPA

In the Saxon town of Bautzen, which has become a byword for racism and anti-migrant sentiment, two youths have attacked a 72-year-old man, shouting 'foreigners out'.

German lawmakers ratify landmark Paris climate accord
The German parliament (Bundestag). Photo: DPA.

Germany's lower of house of parliament on Thursday ratified the Paris agreement on climate change, following in the footsteps of 60 other countries that have committed to the landmark agreement designed to stem the planet's rising temperatures.

Sponsored Article
The Inner Circle: the secret to dating in Berlin
Lifestyle
6 things about Munich that’ll stay with you forever
Sponsored Article
Why Jordan is the ‘Different’ East
Lifestyle
10 pieces of German slang you'll never learn in class
National
Seven great reasons to stay in Germany this September
National
Ouch! Naked swimmer hospitalized after angler hooks his penis
Sponsored Article
Retiring abroad: ensuring your health is covered
National
Six reasons why Berlin is now known as 'the failed city'
National
15 tell-tale signs you’ll never quite master German
Culture
7 American habits that make Germans very, very uncomfortable
Rhineland
Story of a fugitive cow who outwitted police for weeks before capture
Sponsored Article
Life in Jordan: 'Undiscovered treasure'
Culture
Eleven famous Germans with surnames that'll make your sides split
Lifestyle
The best ways to get a visa as an American in Germany
Sponsored Article
The Inner Circle: the secret to dating in Berlin
Gallery
Germany's 17 Olympic gold medals in pictures
14 facts you never knew about the Brandenburg Gate
Society
Ten times Germans proved they really, really love beer
National
Six things you need to know when moving to Germany
Travel
These 10 little-known German towns are a must see
International
German scientists prove birds can sleep while flying
Technology
London v. Berlin: Which is better for startups?
Lifestyle
13 mortifying mistakes German learners always make
Travel
Enter if you dare: Berlin's best abandoned haunts
Lifestyle
10 rookie errors all Brits make when they arrive in Germany
5,682
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd