‘Baywatch’ Legend David Hasselhoff on His Iconic Nickname, Staying Present, and Fighting Kangaroos

David Hasslehoff
 Jason Koerner / Stringer / Getty

The lead-up to the premiere of the summer’s hottest, most scantily-clad film—yes, we’re talking about Baywatch—has been lengthy. We took a look at how Zac Efron works out to get a beach-ready Baywatch body, the ridiculously good-looking cast, and, of course, the beautiful women.

But we can’t talk about Baywatch without mentioning David Hasselhoff. Here, six questions with the man, the myth, the legend himself. 

1. Who or what is “The Hoff?”

“The Hoff” is a personification, a complete blown-out version of what people think I am. It was created by secretaries back when I was 50. In fact, I hardly ever get “David Hasselhoff” anymore. Everywhere I go I get “The Hoff,” or even “Mr. Hoff.”

2. Is it true you once fought a kangaroo?

[Pause] No. What happened was a kangaroo tried to mate with my assistant, Buddy. I helped the kangaroo’s trainer pull its claws out of Buddy’s forearms, at which point the kangaroo backed up and shot sperm all over him. We [males] don’t know what we’re doing when we’re in that passionate moment. But don’t ever F’ with a ’roo.

3. Your co-star on Knight Rider was a Pontiac Trans-Am with a mind of its own. Any advice on self-driving cars?

Sergey [Brin], who runs Google, picked me up in a self-driving car, and I’ve never felt more anxiety. Driving a car with your hands off the wheel, going 65 miles an hour…it freaked me out! I hope to live long enough to see flying cars, like The Jetsons, man.

4. What was it like to stand on the Berlin Wall singing “Looking for Freedom” during communism’s last days?

It was fuckin’ unbelievably unbelievable. A million people were by the Wall, all singing in English. Nobody spoke English, because they weren’t allowed to speak it [in East Germany]. But they knew the word “freedom.” Other than having my children, that was the highlight of my life.

5. Did you get a chunk of the Wall?

Oh, I have much more than a chunk. I chopped down a bunch of the Wall and brought it back with me. I gave most of it to the Baywatch cast with a plaque that says, “A Little Piece of Freedom.” I’ve still got bags of it up in the attic. Each piece is probably worth a thousand dollars now.

6. Do you relate at all to Alexander the Great, who, it is said, “wept when he beheld the breadth of his domain, for there were no more worlds to conquer”?

No! There are worlds still to conquer. I’m living in the present, because when I do, it all unfolds. Shit happens when I try to push it around. I’m going forward with a smile on my face, saying, “Thank you.” As far as I’m concerned, I’m just beginning.

Batwatch hits theaters May 25.