Hannes Messemer (May 19, 1924 – November 2, 1991) was a German actor best known for his role as the commandant in The Great Escape (1963). The movie had a star-studded cast, but it was the relatively unknown Messemer who uttered the film's most famous line (to Steve McQueen/Capt. Hilts): "It looks, after all, as if you will see Berlin before I do."
Born in Dillingen an der Donau, Bavaria, Messemer served on the Eastern Front of World War II and was eventually captured by Soviet soldiers. He died of a heart attack in Aachen.