Priyanka Roy of India's edition of The Telegraph recently spoke to Stellan over the phone for an interview. Here are the more interesting excerpts:

"Honestly, I never look back at what I’ve done. I just approach every project as if it’s my first and my last. I don’t watch my own films very much. I really enjoy my work, but I don’t see it as a "body" of work or anything that’s monumental by any means. Though I have never been interested in a career, I have always loved being an actor. When I work with other actors, I always look at what they give me and what I can give them and what we can create together. I am as happy as a child in a sandbox when that happens."

"The wonderful thing about working with him [Lars Von Trier] is that he always makes films no one has seen or attempted before. He doesn’t copy anyone… everything he does is original. Whether you like his films or not, they all have a distinct voice. Also, it’s the most relaxed set you can be on. He’s the friendliest man and there’s no hierarchy on his set. Everybody is allowed to say what they think. On his set, it’s like being with siblings — good siblings — and you just enjoy the process. And I know that I can always trust him with the final product."

"I went to India to do a film ("The Perfect Murder", 1987) with Naseeruddin Shah several years ago. I come from a very secluded and unpopulated part of the world — Sweden — and it was a shock to see the crowds in India. But I really loved it. I met Madhur Jaffrey on that trip and she cooked some of her recipes. I have those recipes and I cook them sometimes. India is not a country… it’s a continent, and it’s fascinating."

In another interview, Stellan looked back at the time when work brought him to India, and he saw a world embracing diversity in its true sense.

"When I was working in Mumbai, it was in the 1980s... What I loved about the city and India was that it was not very violent. You could walk in the middle of the night and didn't have to fear of getting attacked or robbed or anything. There were a multitude of different approaches of religion and approaches of life and they were all tolerated."

He knows his political opinions have created trouble for him in the past, but that doesn't deter him. Recalling an incident, he said: "I always say what I have on my mind. And it is not always appreciated. I did an American horror film and on the premiere at the red carpet, somebody asked me 'What scares you?', and it was at the time of George W. Bush. I said the reign of this country scares me and that had repercussions... But you still have to express yourself."

Personally, I would prefer Stellan to keep his political opinions to himself. He embarrasses himself with his naiveté. Voicing whatever is on your mind is behavior that can lead to hostility and disharmony.

Here are some new recent photos:

With the celebration of the 100th anniversary of Ingmar Bergman's birth around the corner, Stellan was asked how he sees the person who for decades was Sweden's by far the most influential film maker. He says, "I despised him as a person."

He continues, "I worked with Bergman twice. The documentary, which premiered in Cannes, reflects very much my view on him. It shows a fantastic creative man. But it also shows a man who could be extremely brutal and behave in a way no one should behave. Had it been today, I'm not sure that he would have been able to get away with his behavior. However, I was very impressed with him as a filmmaker."

With this interview was this photo of Stellan with Aftonbladet's Magnus Sundholm.


The DVD and Blu-ray release date for "Borg vs McEnroe" is set for July 3, 2018. It became on Digital HD from Amazon Video and iTunes on April 12. When asked about the two famous tennis players, Stellan told the press, "They’re very much alike, actually. But they handle their poor sportsmanship in different ways. Bjorn puts a lid on it, partly thanks to his coach Lennart Bergelin, the part I’m playing. McEnroe doesn’t. But Bjorn, when he was younger, behaved exactly the same way as McEnroe did. It’s something. If winning is the most important thing in your life, you become an anti-social person. In that way, I think McEnroe and Borg are very much alike." You can watch a video interview with Stellan at this youtube link. The second photo below shows a make-up artist working on Stellan for his role.

Who knows for sure if this is for real, but I came across a web site that sells these sweatshirts with different celebrities skateboarding. What next!


A new indie film! Stellan will star in a Norwegian film called HOPE, directed by Maria Sødahl. The film, which is based on a true story, follows Anja, who comes home for Christmas after touring around the world with her dance company. Her companion, Tomas, their three children and other children from previous relationships are having a pre-Christmas celebration. Anja suddenly finds out she has a life-threatening brain metastasis. Her relationship with Tomas is put to the test as both try to find medical miracles. Andrea Bræn Hovig will play Anja while Stellan will play Tomas. TrustNordisk has picked up the film for world sales. Filming is scheduled to begin in mid-January 2019 with a release date set for October 2019.


After so many years, against all odds, Terry Gilliam ultimately succeeded in bringing THE MAN WHO KILLED DON QUIXOTE to the big screen. The film premiered at the closing ceremony at the Cannes Film Festival on May 19th. Attending were the director and cast members Jonathan Pryce, Jordi Molla, Rossy de Palma, Adam Driver, Olga Kurylenko and Stellan. Typically the day included a press conference, photo call and then the screening. Check out the Cannes photo gallery.

Gilliam told the press, "I met Stellan for the first time at the European Film Awards in Copenhagen. He gave such a funny speech to Mads Mikkelsen that I immediately knew that one day I would work with him." Stellan's comments included, "'Don Quixote' is a fantastic book. I find it very human, understandable and quite beautiful. I don't think it has aged that much. We constantly have discussions about the importance of alternative realities and alternative facts... The script was very Terry. Of course, I liked it. I like Terry's universes. He makes films that don't look like anybody else's. I would probably have taken the role even if I hadn't liked the script, just because I wanted to work with Terry."

When Stellan returned from Cannes, Aftonbladet asked him about how he landed this role and he replied, "I do not remember if Terry rang or not. It was no remarkable role but I have admired him ever since Monty Python. He is a f**king funny guy."

Aftonbladet also questioned about an old friend in the movie business. At the time that 86-year-old Hans Alfredson passed away last September, Stellan laid low but now he says he can talk about Hasse commenting, "It's awful when funerals become like red carpet funerals". How true! Stellan told the newspaper, "I met him the last time on his 80th birthday. Even then he wanted to die. He did not have fun anymore and he was one who had the need to have fun. Hasse was very important to me. We made several movies together. And wrote one together - 'Jim and piraterna Blom'. And 'The Simple-Minded Murderer' was the film that got me an agent and started my international career."

Finally, Stellan recalled his presence at Cannes through the years saying he'd gone "more than five times, less than ten". He continued, "The first time was for 'Breaking the Waves'. Emily Watson called up Lars von Trier so he could hear the standing ovation on the phone as he had left before the gala show ended. It's a nice memory."


WHERE IS MERYL? The final trailer has arrived for the "MAMMA MIA" sequel at this link.  Scott Medelson of Forbes writes, "Meryl Streep is still nowhere to be found in the 'present-tense' footage of this new trailer. It’s a little ghoulish to consider that Universal/Comcast Corp.’s marketing campaign is essentially using 'Is Donna dead and how did she die?' as a kind of mystery to drive interest in this musical sequel."

Chris Evangelista of Slash Film writes, "Based on this trailer, I’m assuming Meryl Streep’s character is dead, or possibly in the witness protection program. Perhaps the actress was too busy to film a full part... There’s approximately .03 seconds of Ms. Streep, while the rest of the original cast (and some new faces) dance their asses off. "

Finally, Yohana Desta of Vanity Fair writes, "What’s going on with Meryl Streep’s character in 'Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again?' This trailer focuses mostly on flashbacks to Donna in her younger years as she first journeyed to the Greek isle of Kalokairi... As the trailer flashes back and forth between the past and present, we also get a look at certified daddy Andy Garcia, who’s joining the sequel to play a character named Fernando. Though the corresponding ABBA song “Fernando” is about two old friends reminiscing about war and life on the battlefield, it seems like the film will remix its meaning and turn it into a lovelorn ballad sung by Cher (who plays Sophie’s domineering grandmother, Ruby). Fernando and Ruby also do a sort of gentle two-step together as fireworks go off in the distance, further evidence that something romantique is brewing between these two. All in all, everyone is having the time of their life in this trailer—except for Donna. Who’s definitely dead. Right?"


The film page for THE PAINTED BIRD has been posted along with several new production photos, some featuring co-stars Harvey Keitel and Julian Sands. The black & white WW II drama will be released next year. Here's a photo of Stellan taken last year in the Czech Republic outside the Lowenstein Hotel where he stayed.      

Son Bill has just been cast in "Villains", a darkly comedic thriller, written and to be directed by Dan Berk and Robert Olsen. The film follows a pair of amateur criminals who, after breaking into a suburban home, stumble upon a dark secret and two sadistic homeowners who will do anything to keep it from getting out. The cast also includes Maika Monroe. No release date has been announced.


Stellan and Emily Watson have been cast in HBO’s miniseries CHERNOBYL, a co-production between HBO and Sky to be directed by Johan Renck. Written by Craig Mazin, the five-part miniseries dramatizes the true story of one of the worst man-made catastrophes in history — the April 26, 1986 explosion at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant in then-Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic — and tells of the brave men and women who sacrificed to save Europe from unimaginable disaster.

Skarsgård will play Boris Shcherbina, the Deputy Chairman of the Council of Ministers and head of the Bureau for Fuel and Energy of the USSR. A relatively minor figure in the Kremlin, he is assigned to lead the government commission on Chernobyl in the early hours following the accident, when the government was still unaware the reactor had exploded. As the ranking official in charge of the effort to confront an unprecedented disaster, Shcherbina finds himself trapped between the realities of the political system he serves… and the brutal human costs of battling an escalating nuclear nightmare.

Watson will portray Ulana Khomyuk, a Soviet nuclear physicist committed to solving the scientific mystery of what led to the disaster at Chernobyl, so that it can be prevented from ever happening again. Her efforts put her on a collision course with those who have buried a terrible secret, and she must risk her freedom… and her life… to see that the truth is told, and justice is done.

Jared Harris plays Valery Legasov, the Soviet scientist chosen by the Kremlin to investigate the accident.

The series will reunite Stellan and Emma who starred together in "Breaking the Waves". Stellan told the press, "Nobody would see it as a privilege to spend five months in a dilapidated nuclear plant, unless it was to play in a script like this by Craig Mazin, work with a director like Johan Renck, collaborate with a producer like Jane Featherstone, jam with an actor like Jared Harris and finally be at the feet of Emily Watson whom I have been missing for some twenty years."

Emma said, "This is a significant piece of work and I’m honored to be part of it. I can’t wait to get started with this amazing group of people, and am especially excited to be working with Stellan again."

Filming will begin in Lithuania this spring. It will air on HBO in the US, on Sky Atlantic and NOW TV in the UK and Ireland, and on Sky Atlantic in Italy, Germany and Austria.


A Berlinale interview just appeared online with Stellan discussing several subjects - the importance of taking children to the cinema,  the positive messages in "Gordon & Paddy", why he never looks back across his illustrious career and why he doesn't like America. Of course, he continues to show how naive he is when he rejects the idea of good guys and bad guys. I'm not talking about the fictional bad guys in Hollywood movies. The real bad guys live among us and you don't have to be a rocket scientist to recognize evil. But Stellan is an actor so we'll give him some slack.

There's a second interview from Filmink in Australia where "Return to Montauk" is playing. We, in the States, are still awaiting its arrival either at the cinema or on DVD. Stellan says he often gets the question - "Are there any films you made that you regret?" He responds, "I made quite a few really, really bad films, but I do not regret them, because…I’m the sum of all the mistakes I’ve made, as well as I’m the sum of all the good decisions I’ve made. Looking over his filmography for bad films, I would certainly point to Waz, Dogville, Time Code, Passion of Mind, Deep Blue Sea, Frankie and Alice and Boogie Woogie. At the top of the list for best films, I would select Oxen, Zero Kelvin, Kongen av Bastøy, Breaking the Waves, Aberdeen, God afton, Herr Wallenberg and Den Enfaldige mördaren. As a rule, I much prefer Stellan in foreign films and rarely in American films except for Ronin.


Stellan was back at the Berlinale, the 68th edition, as the voice of a frog in the children’s animation film GORDON & PADDY, screening in the Generation Section. In this podcast, Stellan describes how different and more natural it is to go back to acting in his mother-tongue. Giving his voice to Gordon the detective frog gave him the opportunity of working with two women he had successfully and happily worked with before: director Linda Hamback and actress Melinda Kinnaman. Stellan also talks about how it was to go back to the "Mamma Mia!" set after 10 years and the fun they all had in continuing this film’s journey. He ends with comments on the #Metoo movement, its positive effects and its negative sides.


TrustNordisk have acquired sales rights to OUT STEALING HORSES  from writer/director Hans Petter Moland with Stellan in the lead role. Bjørn Floberg  and Anders Baasmo  have also been cast.  Based on Per Petterson’s novel of the same name, the film has Stellan playing 67-year-old Trond, who must recall difficult experiences affter meeting a face from the past. Petterson’s book was named one of the New York Times’ Five Best Fiction Books" in 2007. Shooting begins on February 19th, with the final shooting phase in June or July.


Stellan, along with actress Alicia Vikander,  joined Swedish and English royalty on Tuesday evening at a black-tie dinner at the home of the British Ambassador. This marked the first day of a four-day tour of Sweden and Norway by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. Joined by Swedish politicians, businessmen and a television host, the guests dined on a starter of Scottish smoked salmon with quail egg, horseradish cream on a bed of salad, followed by guinea fowl with stir-fried vegetables and mashed potatoes. For dessert, they enjoyed blackberry soufflé with chocolate ganache, before a selection of British cheeses.

At the table, the Duchess was placed between the ambassador, David Cairns, and Stellan while the Duke was entertained by Alicia and the ambassador's wife, Sharon Cairns.


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The Skarsgård family was well represented at the Sundance Film Festival last week with both Bill and Valter in attendance for their respective premieres. Bill was in the cast of  "Assassination Nation" and Valter for "Lords of Chaos".



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