Curd Jürgens

Curd Jürgens Biography

Karl Stromberg in The Spy Who Loved Me

Curd Jürgens, born Curd Gustav Andreas Gottlieb Franz Jürgens, was a talented German-Austrian stage and film actor who made a significant contribution to the world of cinema.

He was born on December 13, 1915, in the Munich, and he had a rough start in his career when he was involved in a car accident that left him unable to have children. But his life took a dramatic turn when his wife, actress Louise Basler, encouraged him to pursue acting.

u started his acting career on stage in Vienna, where he quickly made a name for himself as a talented and versatile performer. Jürgens’ outspoken criticism of the Nazi regime in his native Germany led to his imprisonment in a labor camp in Hungary. But he managed to escape after a few weeks and became an Austrian citizen after the war.


Ironically Curd Jürgens went on to play soldiers in many war films, including his breakthrough role in Des Teufels General (The Devil’s General), a fictional portrayal of World War I flying ace and World War II Luftwaffe general Ernst Udet. He also appeared in Hollywood films, such as The Enemy Below and The Longest Day, where he played the German general Günther Blumentritt.

Curd Jürgens biggest role in English speaking films was for his casting as Bond villain Karl Stromberg in The Spy Who Loved Me. This was coming towards the end of his illustrious career, and Jürgens’ last film appearance was in the spy-thriller Teheran 43. He made two more appearances in TV films German film Collin, and BBC TV film Smiley’s People in 1982 was his last ever role.

Although he appeared in over 100 films, Curd Jürgens was also a notable stage actor. He played the title role of Hugo von Hofmannsthal’s play Jedermann at the Salzburg Festival from 1973 until 1977, which was arguably the most high-profile role for a German-speaking male actor. Jürgens’ last stage appearance was with the Vienna State Opera as Bassa Selim in Mozart’s opera Die Entführung aus dem Serail.

Apart from acting, Curd Jürgens also directed a few films with limited success and wrote screenplays. He was a talented journalist and provided the German voice of the journalist in the 1980 German dub of Jeff Wayne’s Musical Version of the War of the Worlds.

Curd Jürgens was married five times, but his last marriage to Margie Schmitz lasted until his death on June 18, 1982, in Vienna, from a heart attack.