Stellan Skarsgård

Stellan John Skarsgård is a Swedish actor. He is known for his roles as Jan Nyman in Breaking the Waves, Captain Tupolev in The Hunt for Red October, Professor Gerald Lambeau in Good Will Hunting, Bootstrap Bill Turner in ' and ', Bill Anderson in Mamma Mia! and the sequel Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again, Commander Maximilian Richter in Angels and Demons, Martin Vanger in The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, Dr. Erik Selvig in the Marvel Cinematic Universe films Thor, The Avengers, ', and ', The Grand Duke in Cinderella, and Boris Shcherbina in the HBO/Sky UK television miniseries Chernobyl. He is set to star in the untitled Cassian Andor series.

Early life

Skarsgård was born in Gothenburg, Sweden, the son of Gudrun and Jan Skarsgård. He moved often in his childhood and lived, amongst other places, in Helsingborg, Totebo, Kalmar, Marielund and Uppsala.

Acting career

Skarsgård started his acting career early; and, by the age of 21, his experience in film, TV and stage was considerable. Most of his early roles were in Swedish television and films. Of Skarsgård's work in Swedish film, he is perhaps best known for Good Evening, Mr. Wallenberg, where he portrays Swedish diplomat Raoul Wallenberg, who worked to save Holocaust victims.
Skarsgård is particularly associated with director Lars von Trier and has appeared in six of the Danish auteur's features: The Kingdom, Breaking the Waves, Dancer in the Dark, Dogville, Melancholia and Nymphomaniac. His most personal working relationship, however, is with Norwegian director Hans Petter Moland, who has directed the actor in Zero Kelvin, Aberdeen, In Order of Disappearance, and A Somewhat Gentle Man. Skarsgård considers Moland a close friend and, in 2009, he said of their relationship: "We're like an old married couple and I get separation anxiety." Another Scandinavian work that he is known for is the 1997 Norwegian film Insomnia, in which he plays the guilt-ridden policeman Jonas Engström.
Skarsgård's first American film was the 1985 film Noon Wine, directed by Michael Fields, in which Skarsgård played a mentally-disturbed immigrant farmhand being chased by a bounty hunter. He acted opposite Fred Ward, who portrayed the farmer. In 1990, he starred in another American film, The Hunt for Red October, playing the character of Captain Tupolev, a Soviet submarine commander.
He was considered for the role of Oskar Schindler in Schindler's List. Skarsgård has said that people often mistook him for Liam Neeson, who portrayed Schindler in the film, and Skarsgård later replaced Neeson in the 2004 film '. He appeared as a guest star on the HBO TV Series Entourage, as Verner Vollstedt, the German director of the fictional film Smokejumpers, who has a bias against the main character Vincent Chase, one of the stars of the film. Skarsgård appeared as Bootstrap Bill Turner in both ' and '. In 2008, he starred as Bill Anderson in Universal Pictures' Mamma Mia! and reprised the role 10 years later in its sequel Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again.
Skarsgård played Dr. Erik Selvig in Marvel's 2011 film Thor, and then reprised the role in the 2013 sequel
', as well as 2012's The Avengers and 2015's . Skarsgård reteamed with Thor director Kenneth Branagh for the 2015 live-action adaptation of Disney's Cinderella, in which he played The Grand Duke. On 9 January 2018, it was announced that he will star as the villainous Vladimir Harkonnen in Denis Villeneuve‘s upcoming Dune adaptation.
Skarsgård has also appeared in music videos alongside fellow Swedes. He was in Eva Dahlgren's "Vem tänder stjärnorna" in 2009 and Lykke Li's 2011 music video, "Sadness Is a Blessing".

Personal life

He married My Skarsgård, a physician, in April 1975; together they have six children: Alexander, Gustaf, Sam, Bill, Eija, and Valter. Alexander, Gustaf, Bill, and Valter are also actors, while Eija is a former model. Skarsgård and My divorced in May 2007. Stellan married Megan Everett in January 2009. The couple has two sons together, Ossian and Kolbjörn. Skarsgård has had a vasectomy, stating that he felt eight children was enough.

Views on religion

Skarsgård was brought up by humanist, atheist parents, and had an atheist grandfather and a deeply religious grandmother. According to Skarsgård, this never led to any problems because of the family's mutual respect for each other's opinions. After the September 11 attacks, Skarsgård set out to read the Bible and the Quran, both of which he condemns as violent. Skarsgård is also a critic of religious independent schools in the Swedish educational system. He has said he considers the notion of God absurd and that if a real God were actually so vain as to constantly demand worship, then he would not be worthy of it.
In 2009, Skarsgård, along with other non-religious artists, authors, and entrepreneurs including Christer Sturmark, Björn Ulvaeus, and Christer Fuglesang, wrote an article in Dagens Nyheter stressing the importance of secularity. The group also criticised the UN for its stance on blasphemy laws.




Awards and nominations