Sounding more like an American these days, it’s hard to believe that Daniel Bernhardt was born and raised in Bern, Switzerland. Even more surprising is the fact that a guy who got his degree in architectural engineering, could wind up co-starring alongside Keanu Reeves and Lawrence Fishburn as “Agent Johnson” in the highly successful sequel…The Matrix Reloaded.
After completing his studies in Switzerland, Bernhardt decided to see a bit of the world. While living in Paris he was discovered by a modeling agent and found himself in demand by such leading designers as Montana, Mugler, Ferre and Versace to name a few. His image was soon gracing the pages of the world’s top magazines and editor’s in New York took notice.
While living in Manhattan, shooting spreads for everyone from Vogue, to Elle, to GQ, he got a call that would inadvertently change his life. Famed photographer and director, Bruce Weber, was filming a television spot for Versace. During auditions, Weber was so impressed with Bernhardt’s natural screen presence and his exceptional skill as a martial artist, he immediately cast him as to co-star in “Looking for Kicks.” A new career was just around the corner.
The movie producer that had launched Jean-Claude Van Damme's career was looking for a new action star. After years of searching he finally got his man. Daniel was signed on as the lead in Bloodsport II. The film was released theatrically in the U.S. the following year. Having successfully made the part his own, he went off to Sri Lanka to complete the next installment.
Bernhardt spring boarded his Bloodsport notoriety into starring rolls in Perfect Target, Bloodsport III and IV Global Effect, Strike Force, Tornado and the feature films, Children of Wax with Armand Assante and Sony Pictures’ The Cutter with Chuck Norris.
Bernhardt also starred in the television series Mortal Kombat Conquest as “Siro”, produced by Warner Bros. and New Line Cinema, based on the popular video game and movie franchise and in the television network series "Desire" for My Network
His enormous drive and his desire to constantly grow and improve have led him to study with an impressive list of tutors. Acting coach Cameron Thor, dialect coach Robert Easton and martial arts instructor Grand Master Hee Il Cho.
After having co-written his first script, The Lightning Kid, Daniel went on to develop Fetch and Bloodsport: New Beginning to add the title of producer and director to his resume.
Bernhardt passion for cinema led him behind the camera writing, directing and producing his first short film entiled "Fetch", that has been excepted into twelve International film festivals, including the Rhode Island International Film Festival, the Raindance Film Festival in London, the Los Angeles International Short Film Festival and won the Santa Monica International Film Festival for best short film and won the Gold Ticket audience award at the Long Island Film Expo.
Daniel is currently in negotiations to produce and second unit direct Bloodsport: The new Beginning.
Daniel’s many accomplishments worldwide have led to a certain amount of notoriety in his homeland of Switzerland where he's featured in magazines and on television on a regualer basis and in 2004 was named one of the 100 most important Swiss. Carl-F- Bucherer the renowed Swiss Watch maker took notice and signed Bernhardt to be there international Ambassador for the brand. Bernhardt is also an ambassador for Alfa Romeo in Switzerland.
Bernhardt who’s also a passionate photographer and shot the last three International campaigns and an editorial spread for the renowned European fashion line Strellson. Bernhardt also just finished shooting Swiss Celebrities for an AD campaign, for the launch of the new Alfa Romeo "Mito" in Switzerland.
After having tried his hand behind the camera, in 2008 Bernhardt went back in front of the camera and was cast to star in the television presentation "Dragonfire" by writer, director and producer Michael Campus. The show is being packaged by CAA and is scheduled to start production in spring 2010 in Malasia.Next up for Bernhardt, he is currently producing the reinvention of the new Bloodsport movie with a major company and studio in Hollywood. He’s also developing the short film Fetch into a feature film.