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Alexander Johan Hjalmar Skarsgård, born August 25, 1976, is a Swedish actor. He was born into an acting family in Stockholm, Sweden. Alexander made his acting debut in the 1984 Swedish drama film Åke och hans värld (Åke and His World). He is best known for portraying Eric Northman in the HBO series, True Blood. In 2016, Alex portrayed Tarzan in the film The Legend of Tarzan. More information...
09/29/2010

Alexander Skarsgård is big. Very big. But that much was apparent even before GQ.com meets all 6’4″ of him in the flesh at a central London hotel, because when we announced on Twitter we were set to interview him we received an astonishing number of replies – mostly, it has to be said, from would-be fangbangers. Zoolander aside, the towering Swede first came to our attention as Sergeant Brad “Iceman” Colbert in the exceptional Iraq war miniseries Generation Kill, adapted from Evan Wright’s book by The Wire alumni David Simon and Ed Burns. But it wasn’t until his turn as the broodingly menacing 1,000-year-old vampire sheriff Eric Northman in another HBO must-see, True Blood, that we really bit. A peripheral but compelling presence in season one, Eric comes to the fore with arguably the most satisfying character arc in season two, currently airing on Channel 4 ( season three has just finished in the States). He’s since been shot by Annie Liebovitz for American fashion brand Hickey Freeman, crippled Lady Gaga in the video for “Paparazzi” and is now starring opposite Rihanna in upcoming big-budget blockbuster Battleship. “It’s pretty exciting. It’s a crazy production. I’ve never worked on anything of this magnitude. It’s so big. We’re shooting at Pearl Harbour on big ships. It’s a lot of fun.” Not least because he’s filming in Hawaii. “I went up to the North Shore and took a surf lesson and it was amazing. That’s definitely something I’m going to pick up. I’ve lived in California for for six years and I’ve never surfed.” Despite having been up since 4am (on account of jetlag rather than any nocturnal bloodsucking), he mainlined coffee and talked to us about fame, season four and why he “loves being naked”…

The books vs the series
We’re starting season four in two months. People are always like, “Tell us something, give us a spoiler.” And they think we’re lying when we say we don’t know but we honestly don’t! We get the scripts two weeks before we start shooting and then I just get episode one. While we’re shooting episode one, I get episode two. The show has got to take on a life of its own. There are tons of fans of the books out there, we want to entertain them, but if we did scene-by-scene or episode-by-episode following what happened in the books, then they wouldn’t be entertained. You want them to be on their toes! Plus for us working on the show we need to feel that the show is alive. It’s not like we know exactly what’s going to happen for the next seven years because things will change and things that might work great in the books but not on the set. Lafayette died in the first book but towards the end of season one everyone realised, “We can’t kill this character, he’s too good.” So they brought him back and he’s now one of the main characters.

Eric vs Bill (who Skarsgård auditioned for)
The thing with Bill Compton is – this is a year before I started, so very early on – they weren’t auditioning for other characters, they were only auditioning for Bill. So you’d have to ask Alan but I’m pretty sure that he didn’t have Bill in mind when he brought me in to read. Eric shows up later, he’s not in the pilot. They were auditioning for the pilot. So I’m pretty sure Alan already knew that I was better for Eric than Bill. It wasn’t really a case of me and Stephen for Bill. I think Alan was just scanning the market and meeting actors and everyone read for Bill. But of course I couldn’t play him. I’m definitely not right for Bill.

Read the whole article at GQ official site.



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