Bio of Carel Struycken
I was born in the Hague, Holland. My parents moved to Curacao, an island in the Caribbean, when I was four years old. When I was sixteen, the family moved back to Holland, where I finished high school There, I was almost expelled from school because of a play that I wrote and staged, but was saved by an un-solicited, glowing review from one of the parents, who happened to be a psychiatrist. The psychiatrist lady and I shared a certain innocence about the soap bubbles and 1000 balloons that were used in the play: We were apparently some of the very few who had NOT interpreted them as prophylactic devices.
I graduated from the directing program at the film school in Amsterdam, followed by a year at the American Film Institute in Los Angeles. In the years that followed, I collaborated on a number of projects of writer/director Rene Daalder: "Population One", a musical feature; "Centipede", a TV drama about a TV talk show host and true electronics Pied Piper, who entices his audience into forming an electronically linked group mind, and "A Second Chance", a short movie that explores the more whimsical possibilities of Nano-Technology.
My acting career came about quite incidentally, when I was "discovered" at the corner of Hollyvood and Vine by a lady who had abandoned her car in the middle of the street, calling after me: 'We need you for a movie!". The movie was 'Sergeant Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band"
It took a number of films before I realized that acting could be a very enjoyable challenge. The turning point was '"Ewoks II", a George Lucas film in which I play a lizard-like Tyrant, who rants and raves in his castle about wanting "The Power"
Other features I have appeared in since then are "Die Laughing", "Witches of Eastwick", "TheNight Raiders", "Servants of Twilight", "The Addams Family", "Addams Family Values"; "Men In Black", to be released this summer; "Oblivion I & II" in the role of Gaunt, a clairvoyant mortician, who always arrives on the scene moments before someone dies; "Out There" a science fiction movie for one of the cable stations about abductees, also as mortician; "Under the Hoola Moon" as rural postrnan who participates in a camouflage sunscreen product test;
TV work includes "Hunter", "St. Elsewhere", "Framed", "Twin Peaks", "Journey to the Center of the Earth", "Babylon 5", and a number of Star Trek, the next generation episodes.
The last few years I havc concentrated on the hardware and software development of Virtual Reality systems. Our first "product" is a VR system for physical therapy. In one of the exercise programs the patient has to avoid being sucked dry by a vampire bat, while the patient at the same time needs to score points by chasing and catching fireflies. In another exercise program the patient has to cross a floor of hot lava, jumping from disappearing tile to tile. There is also a Human pinball machine for two players; a game with deadly balls called "Ninja Ball"; and an interactive dance floor.
At the moment I am working on a proposal for a series of TV documentaries on Science and Science-Fiction. The program explores science and engineering projects that will have far reaching consequences for our ftiture. The show turns to Science-Fiction to examine the effects these innovations may have on Society.