German actor and comedian Hape Kerkeling reigned for over two decades as one of his homeland's most popular funnymen. He first earned attention via appearances on German radio outlets WDR and BR. In 1984, he was cast in the television sketch comedy series Känguru, and in the role of the irritating child Hannilein emerged as the show's breakout talent. His own television series followed, the media satire Total Normal, which even launched a pop music hit when its theme, "Das Ganze Leben Ist ein Quiz," crossed over into the German charts. Unceremoniously outed by a gay-rights activist, Kerkeling nevertheless did well with feature films like 1992's Kein Pardon. He kept busy during the 2000s as well, hosting Let's Dance, the German spinoff of the Dancing with the Stars reality franchise. ~ Jason Ankeny
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