He was the voice of Arnold Schwarzenegger, Terence Hill and Adriano Celentano: The busy voice actor Thomas Danneberg is dead. This was confirmed to the German Press Agency in Berlin from industry circles.

Several media outlets had previously reported, including the “Bild” newspaper. “Thomas died on Saturday in my presence in our house on Wannsee as a result of a stroke,” said widow Leni Danneberg to “Bild”. He was 81 years old.

The Berliner completed his theater training at the end of the 1950s and then performed on stages for many years. In the mid-1960s he began working as a voice actor and became one of the most popular voices of screen stars and a sought-after speaker for commercials. He also appeared in radio plays. He was also occasionally seen as an actor, for example in the action film “Secret Code Wild Gänse” (1984) or the Edgar Wallace crime thriller “The Blue Hand” from 1967.

From Travolta to Stallone

His friend and colleague Charles Rettinghaus paid tribute to the deceased in a video on Instagram as “one of the greatest German dubbing voices (…). He dubbed so many people and breathed such great life into them: Travolta, Nick Nolte, Terence Hill, Schwarzenegger, Stallone and and and,” said Rettinghaus. For him, Danneberg was always “a legend”.

A few years ago, Danneberg retired for health reasons. His widow said in the “Bild” interview: “Unfortunately, he was recently unable to fulfill any of the fans’ many wishes and sign autographs. We regretted that because Thomas never wanted to disappoint any of them who showed him so much love.”

Danneberg’s voice was simply unique, said Rettinghaus, who himself speaks the German soundtrack by Jean-Claude Van Damme. He appealed to distributors and dubbing studios not to specifically cast speakers who imitate Danneberg, or even to use artificial intelligence for this purpose. “Many can perhaps try to imitate him. But no one has the soul that Danneberg had.”