„Der Beischläfer“ (the philanderer) – a rascal from Munich conquers Amazon Prime

By Katrin Baumer

Markus Stoll usually turns YouTube videos or stands on big live stages. With his character Harry G he has brought a typical Bavarian grumbler beyond the regional borders. For the first time he plays the leading role in a series – the Bavarian Amazon original “Der Beischläfer”. In the following interview Markus Stoll explains what car mechanic Charlie Menzinger has in common with Harry G, what joys and sorrows came up during the shooting and what Heino Ferch in his cowboy hat has to do with all that.

Mr Stoll, what excites you most about this new challenge?

Markus Stoll: I love acting. So far I have only worked for my own videos or played small guest parts. To play the main character in a series is a dream come true.

You are very strongly associated with your character Harry G. Who plays Charlie Menzinger – Markus Stoll or Harry G?

Stoll: Markus Stoll of course. He is not as grumbly as Harry G and can also be quite pensive. But sometimes – especially when it comes to justice – there is a bit of Harry G coming through.

The character is compared to Baby Schimmerlos and Monaco Franze. You are following great footsteps. Do you feel intimidated by that?

Stoll: It raises the bar very high and therefore I don‘t like such comparisons. We have created our own series, which, except for the reference to Munich, does not make use of older series. However, Charlie often reminds us of a typical Munich grumbler, as we know them from the popular series mentioned above. “Der Beischläfer” is modern and contemporary, which clearly makes a difference.

You have already been in front of the camera for "Dahoam is Dahoam" (DiD). How does the shooting of a soap differ from that of an exclusive Amazon series?

Stoll: I love both productions. “Der Beischläfer” was much more dynamic regarding the timing and the shooting. DiD is an established production where spontaneous actions are often difficult or not feasible.

Was there a really "lousy" moment during the shooting of "Der Beischläfer"?

Stoll: Oh yes! During the last shot of the series we stood in front of the court at a late hour. It was freezing cold and the scene just didn't want to work. When it was finally done, the cameraman had a problem with the memory card and we had to start all over again. That was really hard.

What was the most memorable experience?

Stoll: The whole shoot was a wonderful experience for me, the team was great and we had a lot of fun. Heino Ferch in the role of the stoner with a leather coat and a cowboy hat was of course very funny.

„Der Beischläfer“ starts starts on May 29th on Amazon Prime, ©2020 Amazon and its affiliates

The producer Thomas Peter Friedl is pleased to be able to show the city of Munich in the series. What makes Munich special for you?

Stoll: Munich has an absolutely unique flair. You can not only shop and show off, but also enjoy your time in beer gardens or take a quick trip to the mountains. There is hardly any other city that combines so many beautiful features.

Why is the series interesting for a nationwide audience?

Stoll: Because Munich – and Bavaria – are of nationwide interest (laughs). Many aspects of the city are appreciated worldwide. And the series isn't just a slapstick comedy, it's about more. It's about friendship, in good times and in bad. It's about being true to yourself and standing up for your beliefs. It's about life, even if it can be hard to see the funny side of it. The fact that “Der Beischläfer” sometimes represents Bavarian stereotypes makes him of course charming and funny.

As Harry G you are known for your grumbly manners and your Bavarian way of living. What things does Markus Stoll grumble about?

Stoll: Markus Stoll likes to grumble about traffic, construction sites and traffic jams in Munich. About gentrification, crazy cyclists etc. These topics are so inexhaustible that Harry G can make a stage program out of them.

Now you play the main character in a German series. Next step Hollywood?

Stoll: The next step will be my stage show “Hoamboy”, I’m really excited about that and I hope that we will shoot another season of “Der Beischläfer”. Hollywood has to wait for now (laughs).

The first season of "Der Beischläfer" starts on May 29th on Amazon Prime. The Bavarian original focuses on car mechanic Charlie Menzinger (Markus Stoll) who is appointed as a lay judge by the Munich District Court. In the future, Charlie will not only have to deal with his life as an honorary judge, but also with judge Dr. Julia Kellermann (Lisa Bitter) who has been transferred from Berlin to Munich. One thing is certain – the decisions Charlie makes, sometimes base on his very own sense of justice.