David Hasselhoff proud of his cheesy TV shows
80s icon-turned-cruise ship host David Hasselhoff explains appeal of his old TV shows
David Hasselhoff has made a career out of cheesy TV shows and movies, and you can bet he is proud of it.
"So many people grew up watching me on TV and it affected their childhoods in a positive way," the 64-year-old US actor and star of guilty pleasures like lifeguard drama Baywatch and crime-fighting series Knight Rider told The New Paper over the phone from Los Angeles.
"The shows I've been in are not brilliant, incredible shows, but they're upbeat. Baywatch, for example, is full of fun and sunshine, and everyone loves that. And I got to drive a really cool car in Knight Rider.
"I'm proud of the fact that my shows were about saving lives, not taking them," he said.
And after more than 40 years in showbiz, Hasselhoff hasn't stopped churning out his special brand of cheese.
His next project is It's The Ship, a four-day, three-night electronic dance music (EDM) cruise festival which he will host as its "Captain".
This year's cruise departs from our shores on Nov 4, sails to Penang and returns to Singapore on Nov 7. Guest performers include international EDM acts Knife Party and Far East Movement, and local hip-hop artist Shigga Shay.
"Fans can party, watch me perform songs and chat with me. It's The Ship is going to be a crazy fun train, and people will be trapped with me for four days," he said with a laugh.
The star, who's known as the Hoff, seems to have a love for the sea. Besides guest-starring in TV series The Love Boat and The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie, he also has a cruise themed after him next year on the Italian Riviera, where guests can watch him perform on stage and view scenes from his films.
"What I love about cruises is that I get to have a relationship with my fans. I'm not going to just see them once, I get to run into them maybe 10 times, while going to my cabin (or) going to dinner," he said.
He also has a cameo in next year's Baywatch movie, which stars Dwayne Johnson as Hasselhoff's original character, Mitch Buchannon.
"Whenever I see dolphins at sea, I say hello to them and they'll say, 'Hello, Mitch!'" Hasselhoff joked.
"I've been friends with Dwayne for years, so it was fun hanging out on set. I went in to do a scene and was not that happy with it, but the director (Seth Gordon) let me do it the way I wanted... I hope it turns out well."
The younger generation will recognise Hasselhoff from his cameo in last year's straight-to-YouTube 80s martial arts comedy short film Kung Fury, which became a viral hit, with over 25 million views.
Hasselhoff also sang its theme song, True Survivor.
"Of all the songs I've recorded, this is the one I'm most proud of. You can really hear that 80s musical style in it," he said before obliging this reporter by singing the first line of the song.
Hasselhoff has branched out into video games, with a role in first-person shooter Call Of Duty: Infinite Warfare as a DJ character in its 80s-themed Space Zombies mode.
"The 80s were about having fun, and I think people miss that because the world is a scary place right now. Some icons like Michael Jackson and Prince have sadly left us, but those of us still alive are still going strong."
Given that he seems to love having a good time, it is surprising to hear him say he does not drink alcohol.
But, said Hasselhoff: "I'm a healthy guy and with non-alcoholic beer, I can still enjoy the taste and not wake up feeling like I'm a hundred years old. I would rather just be myself than walk around looking cool."
It’s The Ship 2016
Nov 4 to 7
Departs from Marina Bay Cruise Centre Singapore
US$588 (S$800) to $1,888 (S$2,500) from www.itstheship.com