Eric Braeden (b. 1941) is a German character actor best known for his work in American television series. Originally billed under his birth name, Hans Gudegast, he became an American TV star in the mid-1960s as Captain Dietrich on The Rat Patrol. After changing his name to Eric Braeden he appeared in the 1971 film Escape from the Planet of the Apes and appeared on dozens of US TV series, including an appearance as villainous Arlen Findletter in the Six Million Dollar Man telemovie, Wine, Women and War.
Braeden's most prolific work, however, has been in his role as Victor Newman in the soap opera The Young and the Restless, a role he has played continuously since 1980. He has taken time out from his soap opera duties to make the occasional film appearance, however, most notably playing John Jacob Astor in the 1997 blockbuster, Titanic.