Great Danes and Half Danes in Hollywood

by pictura@mail.dk | created - 06 Jan 2014 | updated - 27 Oct 2018 | Public

Actors with some Danish background acting in Hollywood productions.

1. Jean Hersholt

Actor | Greed

If ever there was a Great Dane in Hollywood it was Jean Hersholt - and one of its great hearts as well. He was from a well-known Danish stage and entertainment family that had toured throughout Europe performing with young Jean as an essential cast member. He graduated from the Copenhagen Art ...

Father of Jean Hersholt jr. and uncle of Leslie Nielsen. Father in law of Osa Massen.

2. Allan Hersholt

Actor | Sky Liner

Allan Hersholt was born on December 4, 1914 in San Francisco, California, USA as Allan Eigil Hersholt. He was an actor, known for Sky Liner (1949), The Adventures of Frank Merriwell (1936) and Forgotten (1933). He was married to Marjorie Fay Sanft, Janet R. Russell and Osa Massen. He died on ...

Son of Jean Hersholt and married to Osa Massen.

3. Osa Massen

Actress | Rocketship X-M

Osa Massen (born Aase Madsen Iversen) was a newspaper photographer with an ambition to become a film editor. Prolific Danish film director Alice O'Fredericks gave her a role in her film Kidnapped (1935). After only two films in Denmark, she was given a screen test by 20th Century Fox and arrived in...

Married to Jean Hersholt jr.

4. Leslie Nielsen

Actor | Airplane!

Leslie William Nielsen was born in Regina, Saskatchewan, and raised in Tulita (formerly Fort Norman), Northwest Territories. His mother, Mabel Elizabeth (Davies), was Welsh. His father, Ingvard Eversen Nielsen, was a Danish-born Mountie and a strict disciplinarian. Leslie studied at the Academy of ...

Nephew of Jean Hersholt.

5. Torben Meyer

Actor | Judgment at Nuremberg

Torben Meyer was born on December 1, 1884 in Århus, Denmark as Torben Emil Meyer. He was an actor, known for Judgment at Nuremberg (1961), The Last Warning (1928) and Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea (1964). He died on May 22, 1975 in Hollywood, California, USA.

Maybe not big, but busy and great.

6. Viggo Mortensen

Actor | Eastern Promises

Since his screen debut as a young Amish farmer in Peter Weir's Witness (1985), Viggo Mortensen's career has been marked by a steady string of well-rounded performances.

Mortensen was born in New York City, to Grace Gamble (Atkinson) and Viggo Peter Mortensen, Sr. His father was Danish, his mother ...

Certainly great and certainly considered Danish by the Danish.

7. Connie Nielsen

Actress | Gladiator

Danish beauty Connie Nielsen consistently lights up the screen with an eclectic bevy of film roles. She was born in Frederikshavn, Denmark, to a mother who worked as an insurance clerk, and a father, Bent Nielsen, who was a bus driver. Nielsen began her acting career working alongside her mother on...

A very beautiful and tasty piece of Danish.

8. Nikolaj Coster-Waldau

Actor | Game of Thrones

Nikolaj Coster-Waldau (born 27 July 1970) is a Danish actor, producer and screenwriter. He graduated from the Danish National School of Theatre in Copenhagen in 1993. Coster-Waldau's breakthrough performance in Denmark was his role in the film Nightwatch (1994). Since then he has appeared in ...

Ready to take over, if Viggo Mortensen should turn ill......

9. Sven-Ole Thorsen

Actor | Gladiator

Born in Denmark, Sven-Ole Thorsen has a remarkable sporting background as a champion bodybuilder, champion power-lifter, and karate black belt that made him an obvious choice for movies roles as "muscle for hire." The hulking 6' 4" actor first came to attention as one of Thulsa Doom's bodyguards......

Do NOT mess with this great Dane!

10. Brigitte Nielsen

Actress | Red Sonja

Actress, model, presenter and singer Brigitte Nielsen was born July 15, 1963 in Rødovre, a little place near Copenhagen in Denmark. At the end of high school when she was sixteen, Gitte (her given name) left her family to begin her modeling career. She worked for top fashion designers like Giorgio ...

A tall piece of Danish.

11. Victor Borge

Actor | Higher and Higher

Pianist, composer, songwriter, entertainer and actor, educated at Borgerdydskolen and the Conservatory of Copenhagen. He studied with Egon Petri and Frederic Lammond. His concert career began in 1922, and he performed in a musical revue in 1934, and in films by 1937. Arriving in the US in 1940, he ...

Hillariously great Dane.

12. Nina van Pallandt

Actress | The Long Goodbye

Nina Van Pallandt became famous in the United States in the early 1970s as the mistress of hoaxer Clifford Irving, who went to jail when his biography of Howard Hughes, allegedly written with Hughes' co-operation, proved to be a fake when Hughes himself came out of seclusion to repudiate the work. ...

Clifford Irving's piece of Danish.

13. Karl Dane

Actor | The Big Parade

Born Rasmus Karl Therkelsen Gottlieb in Copenhagen, Denmark, on October 12, 1886 the future Karl Dane had a rough childhood. His father was an alcoholic and spendthrift. At a young age his parents divorced. To escape his unhappy home he took a great interest in the arts, particularly puppeteering (...

The forgotten great Dane.

14. Carl Brisson

Actor | Murder at the Vanities

Carl Brisson was born on December 24, 1893 in Copenhagen, Denmark as Carl Frederik Ejnar Pedersen. He was an actor, known for Murder at the Vanities (1934), The Ring (1927) and All the King's Horses (1935). He was married to Cleo Willard Brisson. He died on September 26, 1958 in Copenhagen.

The great singing Dane. Father-in-law of Rosalind Russell.

15. Frederick Brisson

Producer | Damn Yankees

Frederick Brisson was born on March 17, 1912 in Copenhagen, Denmark as Carl Frederick Brisson. He is known for his work on Damn Yankees (1958), The Pajama Game (1957) and Five Finger Exercise (1962). He was married to Arlette Janssens Josephson and Rosalind Russell. He died on October 8, 1984 in ...

The great producing Dane. Married to Rosalind Russell.

16. Gale Sondergaard

Actress | The Mark of Zorro

Sly, manipulative, dangerously cunning and sinister were the key words that best described the roles that Gale Sondergaard played in motion pictures, making her one of the most talented character actresses ever seen on the screen. She was educated at the University of Minnesota and later married ...

The great "evil" piece of Danish.

17. Scarlett Johansson

Actress | Her

Scarlett Johansson was born in New York City. Her mother, Melanie Sloan, is from a Jewish family from the Bronx, and her father, Karsten Johansson, is a Danish-born architect, from Copenhagen. She has a sister, Vanessa Johansson, who is also an actress, a brother, Adrian, a twin brother, Hunter ...

The most tempting and tasty piece of Danish ever!

18. Ann Forrest

Actress | Love's Boomerang

Ann Forrest was born on April 14, 1895 in Sønderho, Denmark as Anna Kromann. She was an actress, known for Love's Boomerang (1922), The Rainbow Trail (1918) and The Grim Game (1919). She was married to F. Steel Bain and Mr. D'Lisle (third). She died on October 25, 1985 in San Diego, California, USA.

Another great, delicious, soggy, but forgotten, piece of Danish.

19. William Orlamond

Actor | Camille

Born into a family of touring actors, Orlamond went to America at the end of the 19th century and started playing comedy roles onscreen for the Lubin Company in Philadelphia in 1912. Toward the end of the decade he joined with Metro and stayed with the company for many years. With the advent of ...

Another great, forgotten, silent Dane.

20. Asbjørn 'Bear' Riis

Actor | The 13th Warrior

Asbjorn Riis is a Danish professional wrestler, actor and TV personality, who is most famous internationally for portraying the role of the 10th warrior, Halga the Wise, in the movie The 13th Warrior featuring Antonio Banderas. He is also known for a Hulk Hogan look a like in the early 1990s, where...

Do NOT wrestle with this Viking-great Dane!

21. Anders Randolf

Actor | The Viking

Anders Randolf was born Anders Randrup in Denmark 1870.

His parents were Matthius Randrup and Kristine Jensen. He had a number of siblings - two of which were sisters Kirstine Randrup born in 1884 and Jensine Marie Randrup born 1880. He grew up on Old Rybjergaard farm, living with an Aunt rather ...

Another great, silent Dane with a great bark!

22. Caspar Phillipson

Actor | Mission: Impossible - Fallout

Caspar Phillipson was born in 1971 in Copenhagen, Denmark, the oldest of four children to Dane Helle Vibeke Brinch and Brit Robert Phillipson. He was raised bilingually in Yugoslavia, England, and Denmark, and studied acting at the National Danish Drama School at Aarhus Theater, Denmark. The first ...

A Dane playing a great US President. How great can you get?

23. Olaf Wieghorst

Actor | El Dorado

Olaf Wieghorst was born on April 30, 1899 in Viborg, Denmark. He is known for his work on El Dorado (1967) and The Mike Douglas Show (1961). He died on April 27, 1988 in El Cajon, California, USA.

Famous American West painter. Played a Swedish gunsmith in "El Dorado" (1966) with John Wayne.

24. Gwili Andre

Actress | Roar of the Dragon

Danish-born Gwili Andre was a blonde beauty who had the talent and the looks necessary for the big time, but somehow just couldn't put everything together and was mired in B pictures (e.g., Secrets of the French Police (1932), Roar of the Dragon (1932)) for most of her career. After retiring from ...

A tasteful piece of Danish.

25. Camilla Overbye Roos

Actress | Titanic

Camilla Overbye Roos was born in Copenhagen, Denmark. Born into a family of three generations of filmmakers, she spent most of her childhood at a film studio in Copenhagen. Always interested and observing, it soon became part of her life as well. Growing up she worked every job behind the camera as...

Another tasteful piece of Danish that went down with the Titanic.................. in James Cameron's movie.

26. Mads Mikkelsen

Actor | Hannibal

Mads Mikkelsen's great successes parallel those achieved by the Danish film industry since the mid-1990s. He was born in Østerbro, Copenhagen, to Bente Christiansen, a nurse, and Henning Mikkelsen, a banker.

Starting out as a low-life pusher/junkie in the 1996 success Pusher (1996), he slowly grew ...

By some female fans considered a very tasteful piece of Danish.

27. Pilou Asbæk

Actor | Ghost in the Shell

Pilou Asbæk graduated from The Danish National School of Performing Arts in 2008. In the same year, he played the leading role in Niels Arden Oplev's drama Worlds Apart. In 2010 he had his breakthrough as the inmate Rune in Lindholm & Noer's prison drama R for which he won the price for Best actor ...

By some female fans considered an even more tasteful piece of Danish.

28. Greta Thyssen

Actress | Three Blondes in His Life

The enticing, voluptuous European beauty Greta Thyssen filled out the pages of movie magazines everywhere during the 1950s. Born on March 30, 1927, she was a freshly-scrubbed brunette when she was crowned Miss Denmark in 1952. The subsequent attention had her packing her bags for Hollywood. At that...

Great measurements and great piece of Danish.

29. Bodil Rosing

Actress | Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans

Bodil Rosing was born on December 27, 1877 in Copenhagen, Denmark as Bodil Hammerich. She was an actress, known for Sunrise (1927), You Can't Take It with You (1938) and Why Be Good? (1929). She was married to Einer Jansen. She died on December 31, 1941 in Hollywood, California, USA.

Warm and hearty piece of Danish.

30. Carsten Norgaard

Actor | The Man in the High Castle

Carsten Norgaard was born on March 3, 1963 in Frederiksberg, Denmark as Carsten Nørgaard. He is an actor and producer, known for The Man in the High Castle (2015), The Three Musketeers (2011) and Alien vs. Predator (2004).

A great Dane working in both Hollywood and Denmark.



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