Profile - Sebastian Koch
German star of coming-of-age Brit comedy Albatross
Name Sebastian Koch
Born Karlsruhe, Germany, May 31 1962
Background Koch has worked solidly in European films and TV for over 25 years, but it was his terrific performance in The Lives of Others (2006) that made him recognisable to cinema audiences worldwide. His role as blocked writer Jonathan in this month’s Albatross is only the second English-speaking film role of his career.
On his acting process ‘I’m a teamworker. I love to talk a lot before shooting, to read a lot, to go through [the script] like ‘OK, we don’t need this sentence, let’s change that’, so that on the day we know exactly what we want. And then we can try things, because when you’re actually on set it’s different; new ideas come, and you can take them, because you know exactly what you’re looking for.’
On choosing roles ‘I always want to do things that really have to be done, something that’s a challenge – and I’m trying not to repeat myself. I have no "dream role". It just comes to me; it’s very intuitive, and I say, "OK, I have to do this now". It’s not logical, just, "I have to jump into this very strange character" or something like that, I can’t even explain it. But mostly, it makes sense when I look back.’
What he says about his Albatross co-star Jessica Brown Findlay ‘She started with this film, and did it wonderfully – just to see these first steps was wonderful for me, and perhaps to help and support her a bit. She’s really brilliant in the film; she’s Emelia, exactly what the script wanted.’
Interesting fact When he was 18 years old, Koch went on a motorbiking holiday in the Scottish Highlands.
Albatross is on general release from Fri 14 Oct.