Alexander Skarsgard doesn’t need to broadcast his wealth: ‘That radiates insecurity’

Alexander Skarsgard is currently promoting The Northman, a big-budget Viking action-drama which also stars Ethan Hawke, Nicole Kidman and Anya Taylor-Joy. They made the film during the height of the pandemic, and all of the actors seem very proud of it. This is one of Alex’s rare attempts to helm a big-budget studio film. His most recent role was a guest-starring arc on Succession, where he played a bored Swedish billionaire who easily out-maneuvered Logan Roy (Brian Cox). He was great, honestly. Anyway, Alex recently chatted with the Times of London about The Northman, Succession and Sweden. Some highlights:

On Greta Thunberg: Skarsgard cycled past Greta on his way to meet me; she was on a protest. “She’s how we sell our country now. And I almost hit her with my bike… Greta is like a modern-day Viking — and, like Greta, the Vikings refused to fly.”

Working with Brian Cox on Succession: The men discuss takeovers until Logan begins a monologue about America . . .“And Matsson drifts off,” Skarsgard says, laughing. “He is bored. There are all these sycophants in Logan’s life, including his kids — he is a demigod. So what is funny is when he talks about America, instead of going, ‘Tell me more!’ Matsson goes, ‘He talks a lot. I don’t really need him. He’s old and kind of boring.’”

Why his career didn’t really get going until his 30s: Charlize Theron once said that it is hard for an actor to be hot. “When meaty roles come through,” she explained, “pretty people get turned away first.” Did Skarsgard have that experience? “As a good looking blonde woman, I can relate… I don’t really know if that was the reason I wasn’t getting roles… Starting out in Sweden, there was stuff about being tall and blond … But most people here are tall and blond. Still, after my first job I was on a stupid ‘sexy hunky hot list’ and then people didn’t take me seriously. If you want characters with depth but have been labelled ‘a dude who takes his shirt off’, you’re not going to get those offers.”

He’s not on social media and eschews the Hollywood lifestyle: “This industry is incredibly ridiculous. In meetings people are really insecure and eager to please. But it’s a strict hierarchy. If people at the top say something is good, people fall in line. Also, menial trivial bullsh-t stuff becomes very important to people. As an actor the value placed on how important something is can become laughable to me.” His real ambition is to have lots of kids. His twice-married father has eight. He wants nine.

Whether he knows people like the Succession characters: “A little — Stockholm’s a hub for people who start ridiculously successful companies. A lot are programmers, not dudes who got the girl. They sit in the basement and drink Dr Pepper then, suddenly, like the Minecraft guy, outbid Beyoncé on a house in the Hollywood Hills. I like the idea of Matsson being in that rat race of the ultra-wealthy, because it never ends. I’ve been on yachts and seen owners glance at the yacht next door, because it’s 5ft longer. It never ends, does it?”

His privileged life: “I live an incredibly privileged life… I don’t really have to work — I’ve made enough. I could retire, which is extraordinary. But I don’t feel the need to broadcast that with expensive clothes or cars. That radiates insecurity. When you see somebody with a $1 million watch? That’s peacocking. It can feel like they’re overcompensating.”

[From The Times]

I do feel like his baseline moral or social conscience is just very Swedish. The anti-peacocking thing, the refusal to “show off.” While he’s lived and worked in America for the better part of two decades, he judges the American excesses, especially Hollywood excesses. But it also sounds like he appreciates the opportunities he’s gotten and he just does what he likes now, career-wise. Like, sure, he’ll take a small guest-arc on an HBO show in between filming a $90 million studio film about Vikings. Why not? I’m also surprised that he wants nine kids?? He’s 45 years old, if he really wants that many kids, he should probably get started now. Ugh, he’ll probably start with, like, a 22-year-old.

Photos courtesy of Instar.

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23 Responses to “Alexander Skarsgard doesn’t need to broadcast his wealth: ‘That radiates insecurity’”

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  1. Sonia says:

    He’s been with his girlfriend Tuva Novotny for like three years and she’s pregnant and probably due in the next couple months going by recent pictures.

    • Trina says:

      Oh really? That is amazing that he kept that undercover. I love that actually, if true. I looked her up she’s 42. So he would definitely be joking about the 9 kids then.

      • Sonia says:

        He always jokes about having 9 kids “to beat his dad” who has 8. He’ll probably have one or two and that’s it. Tuva has two daughters already.

      • Trina says:

        She’s very age appropriate and talented, and I’m happy to hear this.

    • FeministYeah says:

      You mean he’s been cheating??!!
      I’ll go cry about this on the shoulders of my side boo, Keanu Reeves.

    • Minx says:

      @Sonia I was just going to say the same thing. Alex and Tuva have been really low-key and off the radar this whole time, although he did recently confirm when asked in a NY Times article if he was single with “a resounding NO”.

      I agree that she looks like she could be due very soon judging by recent pictures from her premiere of Diorama. I’m really happy for them, and Alex, but I’m guessing we won’t see that kid until it has a drivers license! 😆

  2. Trina says:

    He’s ridiculously beautiful, and he’s a really good actor and funny too. So I like him. A lot. And I am going to see The Northman this weekend. But he’s gotten to the age where I start to side-eye. Like, you want kids? Who you having these kids with because you are at the age where you can no longer marry someone your own age to have these kids. Unless maybe you only wanted one, right? He has an off-beat sense of humor and is likely joking about wanting 9 kids. But assuming he wants any of them, the clock’s ticking on reaching the point where you are going to make a very age-inappropriate choice in partners. I feel the same about Chris Evans, whom I also love and who also talks about the kids he wants to have. Do they hear this ticking clock, or is that something only women hear?

    • Jan90067 says:

      Sadly, no. They don’t hear it. While we *know* they have one (increased chances of autism, physical and mental birth defects are also associated with male sperm), most men really *aren’t* aware, and there’s not *anywhere* near the talk about it like female fertility issues. For men, they think they’re Charlie Chaplin, and can have kids into their 90s w/out a problem.

    • Jan90067 says:

      Sadly, no. They don’t hear it. While we *know* they have one (increased chances of autism, physical and mental birth defects are also associated with older male sperm), most men really *aren’t* aware, and there’s not *anywhere* near the talk about it like female fertility issues. For men, they think they’re Charlie Chaplin, and can have kids into their 90s w/out a problem.

  3. Maggie says:

    He has time! He has a 9-year old brother!

  4. Nicole says:

    I like this man. He’s ridiculously hot too, but I feel like we could be friends if I was in his orbit.

  5. Lucía says:

    Agreed that his take on displaying his wealth is probably a very Swedish thing. His brother Bill said something similar a few years ago, specifically about how he felt uneasy about the amount of money and attention he earned for being a famous actor. It is a very Skarsgard-esque take at the very least.

  6. Lucy says:

    Did he really say “as a good looking blonde woman, I relate” to Charlize Theron? That’s hilarious 🤣. He is really, ridiculously good looking. I’d hit it.

  7. Nyro says:

    I love Sweden and that’s nice and all. But I’m American. So if I ever get rich, I will stunt on all of you.

  8. ConcernFae says:

    With The Essex Serpent coming out, I feel like Tom Hiddleston would do his career a lot of good by taking some meaty supporting roles. He would be a fantastic one season villain on a big show.

    I remember an interview with Jack Nicholson back in the day that asked him why he was doing a smaller role when he was such a big star. He said that everybody has to start taking smaller roles at some point in their career and if you’ve been doing it all along it will be far less noticeable.

  9. Lightpurplei says:

    I love him.

  10. potatoe says:

    Never found him attractive, never will.

  11. Kaye says:

    I would definitely like to see more articles on Mr. Skarsgard. I’ve thought he was hot since True Blood.

  12. Dee Kay says:

    The line about the 9 kids is a joke. Just like the line about almost running over Greta Thrunberg and being a good-looking blonde woman. I love A Skars as an actor and this interview makes me think he’s a funny, down-to-earth person. I know he’s very handsome objectively but I never found him attractive, it’s really more that he’s a terrific character actor.

  13. Ameerah says:

    He was joking about the nine kids. He’s said in other interviews thar he doesn’t know if he even wants kids.

    • Kkat says:

      His long term girlfriend is very pregnant, so he’ll be having at least one.
      She is 42 before anyone side eyes him