Christoph Waltz: 5 Things You Didn't Know About the Actor

8:00 AM 10/4/2015

by Natalie Stone

And they might surprise you.

Christoph Waltz
Christoph Waltz
AP Images/Invision

The German, Austrian-born actor has garnered global attention for his Oscar-winning roles in Inglourious Basterds and Django Unchained, and will soon command the big screen again when he stars in November’s release of Spectre as Franz Oberhauser opposite Daniel Craig as James Bond.

But beyond his recognition as the bad guy in an array of films (including Water for Elephants), The Hollywood Reporter looks at five facts you probably didn't know about Waltz.

See more Daniel Craig and Christoph Waltz Spar in Final 'Spectre' Trailer

  1. 1

    Born Into "The Business"

    Getty Images

    Waltz was born into a family who worked in the entertainment industry. Two of his grandparents were actors, his mother worked as a costume designer and his father, a stage builder, according to IMDb.

    "The one advantage of having grown up in the business is that you don't romanticize it. 'Oh, isn't it wonderful?' Blah, blah, blah. No, it isn't!," he told Cannes Film Festival. "I've never romanticized it. But on the other hand, the conviction, the dedication that you see here, is tremendous. It would be awful if the whole business consisted of grouchy farts like me." 

  2. 2

    Father of Four

    Getty Images

    The actor has four children: three daughters and a son. In his first marriage to psychotherapist Jackie, the couple raised Miriam, Leon and Rachel. He is now married to Judith Holste, a costume designer; the couple has one daughter together.

  3. 3


    The European actor can include trilingual talents to his resume. The languages he speaks fluently? English, French and German. "I grew up German speaking in Austria and then I learned English and French, then I picked up this fake Italian accent," he told Ask Men.

    Read more Michael Keaton: 5 Things You Didn't Know About the Actor

  4. 4

    Was “Giving Up” on American Cinema

    Before garnering recognition in the United States, European actor Waltz was "giving up" on his dream of trying to make it in Hollywood. "I had been trying for years. I was already giving up. I lived here in New York when I was very young. I went to Lee Strasberg’s theater hoping that I could break in. Well, that turned out to be impossible," he told Daily Actor.

    "Inglourious Basterds kind of brought me back. Now, I am not entirely uncritically throwing myself into anything that comes my way. But the fantastic thing is I don’t have to because so much comes my way that, on top of getting to do it, I get to choose what it is I do," he said. "The moment I start to think about it, I want to fall on my knees and thank my creator that he has opened this opportunity for me."

  5. 5

    Opera Enthusiast

    Frank W. Ockenfels 3

    "The field of music that I am interested in might not be the most popular right now," Waltz admitted to Rogers Movie Nation of his love for opera music, singing and Stephen Sondheim musicals. According to the site, he is a lyric baritone and has directed opera in Europe.