Carel Struycken is a Dutch actor who is known for his work in films, TV, as well as theatre. Known for his unusual height of seven feet, he has starred in a lot of films where his height plays an important part. He became popular after playing the role of The Giant in the mystery drama TV series ‘Twin Peaks’. The show revolved around an FBI agent investigating the murder of a homecoming queen. The show was a huge success and won several Emmy Awards. He also played a supporting role in ‘Star Trek: The Next Generation’. He has appeared in several TV films such as ‘Ewoks: The Battle for Endor’ and ‘Journey to the Centre of the Earth’. His works on the big screen include his role of the butler Lurch in the film ‘The Addams Family’. He also played a supporting role in the hit sci-fi comedy film ‘Men in Black’. He has made appearances in two music videos as well. His most recent works include his role in the psychological horror film ‘Gerald’s Game’. Coming to his hobbies, he is an avid photographer and has a blog dedicated to photography.
Childhood & Early Life
Carel Struycken was born on 30 July 1948 in The Hague, The Netherlands. Along with his family, he moved to an island in the Caribbean at the early age of four. Later, he returned to his country at the age of sixteen. He then finished high school and attended the film school in Amsterdam, where he studied directing.
As a young man, he went to Los Angeles where he studied at the American Film Institute for a year. Initially he collaborated with writer and director Rene Daalder with a few projects.
He was “discovered” in an interesting way. His career as an actor began after he was approached by a woman in the middle of a street, telling him that he was needed for a movie!
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Carel Struycken made his film debut playing a supporting role in the musical comedy film ‘Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band’ (1978), where he portrayed a henchman of a character named Mr. Mustard. The film was directed by Michael Schultz. It was a commercial success but received negative reviews from critics.
His first major role was in the 1984 film ‘The Prey’. The film was about a group of campers who are stalked and killed by an unknown culprit. The film was directed by Edwin Brown and was met with mixed reviews. The following year, he was seen in an important role in the TV film ‘Ewoks: The Battle for Endor’. The show earned an Emmy Award.
Carel Struycken played a small role in the sci-fi TV series ‘Star Trek: The Next Generation’ from 1987 to 1992. He also appeared in the films ‘The Witches of Eastwick’ (1987), ‘Night of the Kickfighters’, (1988) and the TV movie ‘Framed’ (1990).
His popularity increased after he started appearing in the popular TV series ‘Twin Peaks’. The series followed the FBI investigation of the murder of a homecoming queen. It was a huge success, winning multiple Emmys, Golden Globes and also a Grammy Award.
After playing a supporting role in the 1991 horror film ’Servants of Twilight’, he gained additional attention for his role in ‘The Addams Family’. Directed by Barry Sonnenfield, the film was a huge commercial success. Two years later, he reprised his role in the sequel ‘Addams Family Values’.
He appeared in many feature and TV films over the next two decades, such as ‘Oblivion’ (1994), ‘Oblivion 2: Backlash’ (1996), ‘Men in Black’ (1997), ‘Enemy Action’ (1999), ‘Fatal Kiss’ (2002), ‘The Fallen Ones’ (2005) and ‘Trophy Heads’ (2014). He was latest seen in the 2017 psychological horror film ‘Gerald’s Game’.
Carel Struycken is known for his supporting role in the 1991 American film ‘The Addams Family’. Directed by Barry Sonnenfield, the film also starred Anjelica Huston, Raul Julia, Christopher Lloyd and Christina Ricci. The film was a huge commercial success, earning more than six times its budget. A sequel ‘Addams Family Values’ was released two years later, where Struycken reprised his role.
Struycken played a supporting role in the hit sci-fi action comedy film ‘Men in Black’. Directed by Barry Sonnenfield, the film was a huge commercial success. It also received critical acclaim. The film was nominated for three Oscars, out of which it won one. The film revolved around two agents of a secret organization whose goal is to supervise extraterrestrial life forms on Earth, as well as hide their existence from the common public.
‘Gerald’s Game,’ an American psychological horror film, is the most recent work in Struycken’s acting career. It was based on a novel of the same name by Stephen King. Directed by Mike Flanagan, the film also starred Carla Gugino, Bruce Greenwood and Henry Thomas. The film was released in September 2017 and was met with positive reviews.
Carel Struycken lives in Los Angeles with his American wife and two children. He is the brother of renowned Dutch Artist Peter Struycken.
His unusual height is because of a disorder named acromegaly, which is a result of excess growth hormones.
He also has a keen interest in photography and gardening.