Klaus Maria Brandauer (born 22 June 1944) is an Austrian actor, film director, and professor at the Max Reinhardt Seminar in Vienna.
Brandauer was born as Klaus Georg Steng in Bad Aussee, Austria. He was the son of Maria Brandauer and Georg Stenj, a civil servant. He subsequently took his mother's maiden name as part of his stage name, Klaus Maria Brandauer. He was married to Karin Brandauer from 1963 until her death in 1992; they had one son.
Brandauer began acting onstage in 1962. After working in national theatre and television, he made his film debut in 1972. In 1975 he played in Derrick - in Season 2, Episode 8 called "Pfandhaus". His starring and award-winning role in István Szabó's Mephisto (1981) as a self-absorbed actor playing an actor, launched his international career.
Following his role in Mephisto, Brandauer appeared in his first English-speaking role in playing Maximillian Largo in Never Say Never Again (1983), a remake of the 1965 James Bond film Thunderball. Roger Ebert said of his performance, "For one thing, there's more of a human element in the movie, and it comes from Klaus Maria Brandauer, as Largo. Brandauer is a wonderful actor, and he chooses not to play the villain as a cliché. Instead, he brings a certain poignancy and charm to Largo, and since Connery always has been a particularly human James Bond, the emotional stakes are more convincing this time.". He then starred in Out of Africa (1985), for which he was nominated for an Oscar and won a Golden Globe, and Szabó's Oberst Redl (1985) . In 1988 he appeared in Hanussen opposite Erland Josephson and Ildikó Bánsági. Brandauer was originally cast as Marko Ramius in The Hunt for Red October. That role eventually went to Oscar winner Sean Connery, who played James Bond to Brandauer's Largo in Never Say Never Again (1983). He co-starred with Connery again in The Russia House (1990).
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