Alexander Skarsgard Talks Fame, Movies and True Blood

July 8, 2010 by  

Alexander Skarsgard sat down with Situation Stockholm Magazine and talked about a wide variety of subjects including his new movie “Puss“, his famous father and of course True Blood.  Johan Kling’s “Puss“, Skarsgard‘s first Swedish film in three years, co-stars his brother Gustaf and premieres in August.  Alex left Sweden a few years ago due to the lack of quality films that were being produced in Sweden at the time but as a fan of Darling he was excited to work with Johan.  He tells the magazine:

“My moving was also about the Swedish films being made at that time. Nothing stood out. It was as if the same movie was being made over and over and I was only getting offers to play the same part over and over. Now it’s completely different. 10 years ago we made the worst films in Scandinavia but today I’m proud to be Swedish when I travel the world meeting people from the film industry. People are impressed over what’s happening in Sweden. We have a lot of new, young and interesting film makers that all have a different story to tell. Johan Kling is far from being a teenager, but he definitely belongs in the new crowd of Swedish film makers, all with their own unique style and vibe. I call them “auteur”. I was a huge fan of Darling, an incredibly touching movie. For me, there was never any doubt that it was the right thing to go home and work with Johan. And if you haven’t read Johan’s book “Människor helt utan betydelse”, go out and get it immediately!”

It is inevitable that there would be comparisons with Alex and his father Stellan Skarsgard, but Alex says he does not feel pressured to be more successful than his father.  Earlier this year when it was revealed that we would be seeing flashbacks of Eric Northman‘s father on True Blood there were a lot of fans hoping that Stellan would be cast to play the part.  According to Alex:

“You have to understand that it’s not anything that is holding us back. It’s always about how good the script is. Usually when a producer has been interested in casting us together it’s because they’ve seen it from a PR perspective. I mean, they’ve probably been hoping for higher ticket sales if there is a gang from the Skarsgård Family in the same movie. As an actor that isn’t flattering at all and I don’t like it. However, if the offer to play a part comes to me because it’s a good script with a good character, I wouldn’t hesitate for a second to work together. And of course, it would be great fun for all of us. But it has to be the right thing. And of course, we are doing “Long day’s journey into night” someday, speaking of great material….”

The LA Times have called him “anti Hollywood” because of his lack of ego and the fact that he doesn’t have a big entourage and one of the side effects to the fame that Alex has found that he doesn’t enjoy is the paparazzi.  On his last trip to Sweden Skarsgard was surprised at the lack of courtesy of the paparazzi. While he understands that they have a job to do, he also feels that they could be more respectful about it.  When his mother knows a play by play of his day thanks to the reporters that is where he draws the line.

True Blood recently finished filming the season three and HBO has ordered a fourth season much to the delight of the fans.  As filming of the show takes place in Los Angeles Skarsgard has now “officially” relocated there.  While he is not sure if he will stay in LA once True Blood has finished filming he says:

“It’s taken me a couple of years to realize that this is my home. I’ve spent time here before but always moved on. Now that we are shooting True Blood in LA, I’m here for six-seven months of the year. After that when I get time off between seasons I go back home to Sweden to visit family and friends or to film Puss or I go to Shreveport to shoot Straw Dogs. I live in LA now but every time I touch ground in Stockholm I can feel that is my true home. That is where I have my roots, my family and my old friends”

Alex arrived in Los Angeles in 2004 and struggled to find work as an actor.  While he never considered giving up his dream there were times that he asked himself why he was doing this.  In 2007 he got his big break when he landed the role of Sargeant Iceman in “Generation Kill“.  The show was filmed in Africa for seven months and was mentally and physically draining for the cast and crew.  It was while he was in Africa that he was offered the part of Eric Northman in HBO‘s True Blood.  When asked about True Blood and why he thinks it is such a hit Alex said:

“I was unsure myself when I was offered the part to play a Viking Vampire. But when I heard that it was Allan Ball, who made Six Feet Under and American Beauty, I got very interested.  And when we finally met and he told me about his ideas I thought it sounded fantastic.  The Series is over the top, with a twitch and completely insane with elements that are both funny and exciting.  It’s extremely graphic.  But Allan Ball and the other writers have a talent for finding a balance so that everything makes sense. It’s about our society of today; it starts in how you can see parallels in current events. The fantasy is grounded in reality.”

Alex‘s film “Straw Dogs” which releases in 2011 is a remake of Sam Peckinpah’s 1971 film.  When asked if the remake would be as violent as the original Alex replied “Yes its going to be violent but at the same time different from Peckinpah’s”.  The script was re-written in full so while it will maintain the key elements we can expect some surprises.

Puss” will be called “Trust Me” for North American movie goers and will be released August 20, 2010.  Alex is currently filming “Battleship” in Hawaii which will be released May 2012.


Photo Credit:  Situation Stockholm Magazine