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Michelle Hunziker
Hunziker at the Frankfurt Book Fair in 2018
Born
Michelle Yvonne Hunziker

(1977-01-24) 24 January 1977 (age 45)
Sorengo, Switzerland
NationalitySwiss, Italian
Occupation
  • Television presenter
  • former model
  • actress
Years active1994–present (model)
1996–present (TV host)
1998–present (actress)
Height1.70 m (5 ft 7 in)
Spouse(s)
(m. 1998; div. 2002)
Tomaso Trussardi
(m. 2014; div. 2022)
Parents
  • Rudolf Hunziker (father)
  • Ineke Hunziker (mother)

Michelle Yvonne Hunziker (Swiss German: [miˌʃɛl ˈhʊntsɪkər], Italian: [miʃˌʃɛl ˈ(h)untsiker]; born 24 January 1977) is a Swiss-Italian[a] television hostess, actress, and model.

Early life

Hunziker was born in Sorengo, Lugano, in the Italian-speaking part of Switzerland. Her mother Ineke Hunziker is Dutch and her father Rudolf Hunziker, who died of a heart attack in 2001, was a German-speaking Swiss. He was a painter but worked as a hotel manager. In 1983, the family moved to Ostermundigen, a suburb of Bern in the German-speaking part of Switzerland. In Ostermundigen Hunziker attended elementary school. After moving to Milan with her mother, she became a fashion model and was hired by Riccardo Gay, an agent. At 17 she posed for Armani, Rocco Barocco, La Perla, Colmar, Fuerte Ventura, Lovable and Swish.

Career

As she was Eros Ramazzotti's fiancée, Hunziker was discovered by an Italian TV producer. In 1996, she presented the Rai Uno-show I cervelloni with Paolo Bonolis. In summer, she presented the prime time comedy show Paperissima Sprint (Canale 5) with Gabibbo. Because of her popularity, she hosted the afternoon show Colpo di Fulmine (Italia 1) in 1997. She attended the professional academy Music Art & Show in Milan with her choreographer Susanna Beltrami.

In 1998, the Italian film director Vincenzo Verdecchi offered Hunziker her first film role in the TV series La Forza dell'Amore (Canale 5). Afterwards she took the leading female role in Fammi stare sotto al letto. She was also in the documentary The Protagonist and in another film, Alex l'Ariete, where she acted with ex-skiing star Alberto Tomba. Hunziker and Pippo Baudo hosted the Canale 5 show La festa del Disco. From 1999 to 2001, she presented the late-night show Nonsolomoda (Canale 5) where she reported about fashion and lifestyle.

In 1999, TV3, the first Swiss private television station, was founded in Zürich, and Hunziker hosted a show called Cinderella, where a hair and make-up artist, as well as a styling adviser, helped both a celebrity and a viewer have a makeover. After the first episode, Hunziker was caught in the crossfire. The Swiss newspaper Blick even wrote: "Cinderella, TV3's new lifestyle show is not bad. It is catastrophic". Later, Hunziker was interviewed by the Swiss-German magazine Schweizer Illustrierte and said that she could not speak German anymore after having lived in Italy for many years. After TV3 had changed the concept, the show became more popular.

A tile of the wall of Alassio, Italy, autographed by Hunziker
A tile of the wall of Alassio, Italy, autographed by Hunziker

After hosting the Swiss show Cinderella, Hunziker was discovered by German TV producers. In 1998, she presented the Goldene Kamera awards show with Thomas Gottschalk (a very well-known presenter in Germany). A year later, she co-hosted the show Michael Jackson & Friends (ZDF) in Munich. After she had been on various talk shows, she presented her first in Germany: Erstes Glück (SWR/Das Erste). She co-hosted the show with Thomas Elstner and interviewed celebrities about their first love. The show was not very popular though and ultimately axed. When she returned to Italy, she presented the shows Donna sotto le stelle and Piazza di Spagna (Canale 5) with Gerry Scotti and Tacchi a spillo (Italia 1) with Claudio Lippi. In 2002–2004, Hunziker and Carsten Spengemann presented the first and second season of Deutschland sucht den Superstar, the German version of the British TV show Pop Idol.

Hunziker joined ZDF's Wetten, dass..?, Germany's most popular TV show in October 2009. The show was also syndicated live on the Austrian ORF and SF1 in her native Switzerland.

In 2006, she released an album in English, Lole, that was available only in German-speaking countries; the only single off the album was "From Noon Till Midnight".

Hunziker co-hosted the Italian comedy shows Zelig (Italia 1) and Scherzi a parte (Canale 5) in 2001. Zelig is one of the most famous Italian TV shows. Later that year, she received the Italian TV Oscar in the category "Discovery of the Year". She also co-hosted the Italian open-air music show Festivalbar with Daniele Bossari and Alessia Marcuzzi.

She has also starred in the musicals directed by Saverio Marconi The Sound of Music (playing the role of Maria von Trapp) and Cabaret (playing the role of Sally Bowles); both had huge success in Italy.

In 2007, Hunziker and Pippo Baudo hosted the Italian song contest, the Festival di Sanremo, on Rai Uno. Later, she co-hosted Striscia la notizia again with Ezio Greggio and Paperissima with Gerry Scotti.

In 2018, she hosted the Sanremo Music Festival on Rai 1 with Claudio Baglioni and Pierfrancesco Favino In 2020, she appeared in a video posted by Mimmo Modem, with the renowned neomelodic song by Niko Pandetta, Marco Calone and Pino Franzese called "Danza".[1]

Personal life

Hunziker in 2006
Hunziker in 2006

She was married to Italian singer Eros Ramazzotti from 1998 to 2009 (separated since 2002, divorced 2009) and therefore also has Italian citizenship. They separated in 2002 and have one daughter together. Hunziker announced her engagement to the Trussardi-heir Tomaso Trussardi in 2013, and together they have two daughters.

In 2017, Hunziker blamed a cult for her divorce from her former husband Eros Ramazotti. She said that the cult tried to persuade her that he was a bad influence on her and to isolate her from her family. This statement caused an outcry in her homeland of Italy.[2]

In 2021, she stated that she has distant Indonesian ancestry.[3]

Filmography

Films
Year Title Role Notes
1999 Voglio stare sotto al letto Paola
The Protagonists Sue
2000 Alex l'ariete Leva Bottazzi
2005 Madagascar Gloria (voice) Italian dub
2007 Natale in crociera Michela Bacci
2008 Natale a Rio Linda Vita
2009 Natale a Beverly Hills Serena
2011 Amore nero Laura Short film
2017 Super vacanze di Natale Various Anthology film
Television
Year Title Role Notes
1997 I misteri di Cascina Vianello Gaia Episode: "Un matrimonio e un funerale"
1998 La forza dell'amore Tiziana Miniseries
2004 Love Bugs Michelle Main role (season 1)
2018–2019 Idol x Warrior Miracle Tunes Goddess of Music Recurring role

Television programs

Year Title Role Notes
1994–1995 Buona Domenica Contestant Variety show (season 7)
1995 Mai dire Gol Co-host Comedy program (season 6)
1995–1996 Numero Uno Reporter Game show (season 2)
1996 I cervelloni Co-host Game show (season 3)
1997 Paperissima Sprint Presenter Comedy program (season 3)
1997–1998 Colpo di fulmine Presenter Reality show (season 3)
1999 La Partita del Cuore Presenter Special
2000–2003, 2014 Zelig Co-host Variety show (seasons 5–7, 17)
2001 Tacchi a spillo Co-host Talent show
2002 Scherzi a parte Co-host Prank/candid camera program (season 7)
Festivalbar 2002 Co-host Annual music festival
2003 Superstar Presenter Talent show (season 2)
Festivalbar 2003 Co-host Annual music festival
2004–present Striscia la notizia Presenter Variety show (seasons 17–present)
2004–2013 Paperissima Presenter Comedy program (seasons 9–13)
2005 Chi ha incastrato lo zio Gerry? Co-host Comedy program
2006, 2008 Telegatto Presenter Annual cerimony
2007 Sanremo Music Festival 2007 Co-host Annual music festival
2012–2013 Striscia la domenica Presenter Sunday version of Striscia la notizia
2016 Bocelli & Zanetti Night Presenter Special
House Party Guest host Variety show, episode 2
2018 Vuoi scommettere? Presenter Variety show
2019 Amici Celebrities Guest host Talent show (replacing Maria De Filippi for 3 episodes)
2019–present All Together Now Presenter Talent show
2021 All Together Now Kids Presenter Talent show
2022 Michelle Impossible Presenter Variety show

Notes

  1. ^ Second citizenship obtained with marriage.

References

  1. ^ Michele di Croce (1 September 2020). Trash (Instagram). Italy: Mimmo Modem. Archived from the original on 24 December 2021.
  2. ^ "Buch über Sex, Sekte und Einsamkeit – Wie sich Michelle Hunziker rettete" [How Michelle Hunziker escaped]. Focus Online (in German). 14 November 2013. Archived from the original on 6 December 2017. Retrieved 7 December 2017.
  3. ^ "Michelle Hunziker: «Ecco perché mia figlia Aurora ha i tratti asiatici»" [Michelle Hunziker: «That's why my daughter Aurora has Asiatic traits»]. Vanity Fair (in Italian). 20 April 2021. Retrieved 21 April 2021.