David Hasselhoff's dad calls him Michael after his 'Knight Rider' character.

The 'Britain's Got Talent' judge is so well-known for playing crime-fighter Michael Knight in the 80s TV series - which featured David driving a super-powered talking car - that people still call him by the name of the show's protagonist, including his own father Joe.

David said: "My dad still calls me Michael, because of Michael Knight. A lot of people do - I even used to be Michael Knight on my Answering Machine."

Although the 58-year-old actor - who also starred in 'Baywatch' and has judged 'America's Got Talent' - has enjoyed The Benefits of fame he admits it is exasperating being recognised wherever he goes.

He explained: "You get the best seat in the restaurant but everyone watches you eat.

"I like it when people don't know who I am. It makes for a great conversation because it's not about me. But I've only ever met two who don't know me.

"If I could do it again I wouldn't have the fame as much. It's intrusive and it takes a huge emotional toll."

The star - who is currently dating Welsh blonde Hayley Roberts - also admits he sometimes "can't handle" being approached by excited fans although he knows they don't mean any harm.

During an interview on TV show 'Piers Morgan's Life Stories', he said: "Sometimes I can't even walk out of my hotel room because I can't handle it. And people aren't being nasty, they're just being people. Freaking out because they saw David Hasselhoff."