Dieter Brummer dead at 45: Actor's veil of privacy pierced by THAT clash with Melissa George

Brummer, who was a major Australian heartthrob, was never once linked romantically with anyone throughout his career

                            Dieter Brummer dead at 45: Actor's veil of privacy pierced by THAT clash with Melissa George
Dieter Brummer's off-screen clash with on-screen wife Melissa George was something that their 'Home and Away' co-stars were all too aware of (Photo by Patrick Riviere and Pascal Le Segretain for Getty Images)

It's a sad day for fans of Australian soaps after charmer Dieter Brummer was found dead in his Sydney home on Saturday, July 24. Police are not suspecting any foul play in Brummer's death. However, his untimely passing at 45 continues to align with the mysterious private nature of his personal life. Brummer, who was known for playing the insanely attractive Shane Parrish on the hit Aussie drama 'Home and Away' had not been romantically linked, even once, to anyone throughout the course of his career.

There are no verified reports of Brummer even dating someone, let alone tying the knot or having a family. Even his Wikipedia page does not have a 'Personal Life' section like most celebrities. The only time Brummer was linked to someone, it was his on-screen lady love Melissa George who played the role of Shane's wife, Angel Parrish. And the reason behind Brummer and George making headlines with their relationship wasn't positive at all.


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Dieter Brummer as Shane and Melissa George as Angel in 'Home and Away' (Channel 7)

Born in Sydney and of German descent, Brummer made waves after joining the primary cast of 'Home and Away. After several Logie Awards nominations and becoming fan favorites, he and Melissa George established Shane and Angel as TV's super couple by the 90s. Brummer went on to star in popular mainstream TV series after his character was written out of the soap via death from blood poisoning. This came after Brummer had already been voted as 'The Prince of Soap' by readers of the popular Dolly magazine. Years later, when he opened up about the off-screen tension between him and George, there was speculation that their fights were the reason Brummer exited the show.

Brummer had apparently requested creators of the show to write him off, Woman's Day reported in 2012. George too left the show shortly after with an exit arc that saw her character leave for England with her kids and new boyfriend. Speculation surrounding the exits of such a hit couple continued till 2018. This was when Brummer decided to shed some light on what went wrong between the two. During the 30-year-anniversary special of 'Home and Away', long after Brummer had quit the show, the Aussie heartthrob opened up about the clashes of interest between him and his on-screen lady. The friction between the two was so blatant that their co-stars were aware of it too.

“There was a lot of pressure on us,” Brummer recalled in the reunion special titled 'Home and Away: Endless Summer', adding: "We had to look like the perfect darling couple in public. It wasn’t like anything off screen. It was all on screen.” Ray Meagher, who still plays Alf on the soap, also confirmed that things were definitely not alright between the two in real life. "I'm not sure that they got on personally 100 percent of the time." 

Dieter Brummer and Melissa George in 'Home and Away' (Channel 7)

The reason behind the conflict? Not jilted love, for sure. Brummer, who had been described by friends and family as a “free spirit”, had bagged the role of Shane at the young age of 15. It was perhaps his free nature that didn't quite match with George's 'ambitions', as revealed by him in the Women's Day interview years ago. Brummer also dissed the chemistry between their two former characters, claiming: "We may have been love interests on the show but the chemistry was far from real." Hinting that it was probably George's ambition to blame, Brummer added: “Mel was incredibly ambitious right from the outset. I think she wanted to be the next Kylie Minogue.” 

But Brummer wasn't passing comments without provocation. Just months ago, George had publicly slammed the soap during an appearance on Channel 7's 'The Morning Show'. When referred to as a 'Home and Away' actress, George had snarked: "My next call will be to Home and Away to ask them to pay me because nobody does more promotion for that f***ing show than me." She added: "I don’t need credibility from my country anymore. I just need them all to be quiet,” George had told hosts, adding: “If they have nothing intelligent to say, please don’t speak to me anymore. I’d rather be having a croissant and an espresso in Paris or walking my French bulldog in New York City.”

Brummer is survived by his unidentified family members, who issued a statement after news of his death broke. "We lost our handsome, talented, funny, complicated and beloved Dieter on Saturday morning," the statement read. Brummer was never married, but the touching note from his family is indicative of how tight they were. "He has left a massive hole in our lives and our world will never be the same," the statement added, concluding: "Our thoughts go out to all of you who knew him, loved him, or worked with him over the years."