28 October 1957 (Berlin, Germany)
Playing Dr. Ernst-Günther Schenck in Downfall
Berkel was born in Berlin, Germany. His father was a military doctor. Berkel's mother was born into a jewish family that was almost murdered entirely during World War II, as he states in the behind-the-scenes material of Downfall. From the age of 14, he lived in Paris where he took drama lessons with Jean-Louis Barrault and Pierre Berlin. He then trained at the German Film and Television Academy in Berlin and appeared on stage in Augsburg, Düsseldorf, Munich, Vienna and at the Schiller Theatre, Berlin.
He has appeared in many German television productions and secured a major role in the Academy Award-nominated film Downfall as Dr. Ernst-Günther Schenck. He has followed this with significant roles in the Paul Verhoeven directed Dutch movie Black Book and the big budget United States movies Flightplan, Valkyrie (in which he portrayed Colonel Albrecht Mertz von Quirnheim) and the Academy Award-nominated Inglourious Basterds.
He lives in Berlin with the actress Andrea Sawatzki, with whom he has two sons. He is also fluent in French and English.
- Der Mann mit dem Fagott (2011) .... Heinrich Bockelmann
- Das dunkle Nest (2011) .... Dr. Gabriel Reinberg
- Der letzte Angestellte (2010) .... David Böttcher
- Inglourious Basterds (2009) .... Eric
- Valkyrie (2008) .... Colonel Mertz von Quirnheim
- Haber (2008) .... Fritz Shimon Haber
- Mogadischu (2008) .... Bundeskanzler Helmut Schmidt
- Flammen & Citronen - Flammen (2008) .... Hoffmann - Gestapo leader
- Andere Junge, Der (2007) .... Jakob Wagner
- Baum, Der (2007) ....
- Zwartboek - Lista Neagra (2006) .... General Käutner
- Kriminalist, Der (Serial TV) (2006) .... Kriminalhauptkommissar Bruno Schumann
- Sturmflut, Die (2006) .... Innensenator Helmut Schmidt
- Frage des Gewissens, Eine (2006) .... Martin Beltz
- Zwartboek: The making of (2006) .... (unconfirmed)
- Helen, Fred und Ted (2006) .... Eduard 'Ted' Fröhlich
- Hexenküsse (2005) .... Herbert Zauner
- Flightplan - Jurnal de bord (2005) .... Mortuary Director
- Vater meiner Schwester, Der (2005) .... Dr. Klaus Merbold
- Downfall (2004) .... Prof. Dr. Ernst-Günther Schenck
- Lautlos (2004) .... Lang
- Bella Block - Das Gegenteil von Liebe (2004) .... Thomas Engler
- Männer wie wir (2004) .... Rudolf
- Tatort - Teufel im Leib (2004) .... Dr. Alfred Waller
- Feuer in der Nacht (2004) .... Karl Winkler
- Laissez-passer (2002) .... Dr. Greven
- Erste Liebe (2002) .... Rolf Drost
- Unbestechliche, Der (2002) .... Harald Kittler
- Rosa Roth - Geschlossene Gesellschaft (2002) .... Maiwald
- Das Paradies ist eine Falle (2002) ....
- Doppelter Einsatz - Im Visier der Bestie (2002) .... Sebastian van Leuyen
- The Experiment (2001) - Robert Steinhoff Nr. 38
- Christian Berkel at Internet Movie Database.