Mads Mikkelsen: Harrison Ford ‘is a monster of a man, a very nice monster’

Mads Mikkelsen had a lovely interview in the Hollywood Reporter to promote the latest Fantastic Beasts movie, where he has taken over the role originally played by Johnny Depp. Since I know nothing about this series or any JK Rowling series, I won’t say anything notable other than I appreciate the fact that they didn’t style Mads to look like Depp in way, shape or form. Mads is very good at promoting this kind of tricky project too, he manages to show respect to Depp as an actor while remaining noncommittal on why Depp was fired from the franchise. Mads also keeps it cute when talking about Rowling. Some highlights:

He was a gymnast & ballet dancer for years before he became an actor: “Dancing has helped when it comes to my awareness in a room — how heavy or light is a character, slow or fast — but I rarely think about it. Gymnastics, on the other hand, is quite clearly coming in handy when it comes to doing stunts.”

The film never addresses the actor change: “That was very deliberate. Everybody knows why [the actors changed]. The entire world knows why. It would almost be like an Easter egg to reality to point out we swapped actors. Hopefully we drag them in with the first scene and from there they accept this world.”

He wasn’t desperate to talk to Depp: “I wasn’t like, ‘Oh please let me talk to him.’ It would have been great to touch bases, ‘clean the room’ in a sense. Maybe I’ll see him in the future.”

He didn’t speak to JK Rowling either: Mikkelsen says he wanted to ask Rowling why, exactly, the fascistic Grindelwald hates non-wizards so much that he wants to subjugate all “muggles.” “I’d like him not just to be instantly demagogic,” he says. The actor invented his own backstory for the character instead. “My reason is that something happened to his entire family when he was a child that explains the hate he carries around. It’s a fantastic, detailed, complex universe [Rowling’s] created, and I’d love to hear her thoughts on it. I hope I will do more than this one [film].”

Social media: While he has an official Twitter account and a strong online following, he won’t be reading social media much, either. “It’s insanity in there. You get into discussions where everything is black and white, nothing is nuanced and even the smallest word can turn your world upside down. I’m staying away from it.”

He plays the villain of the fifth Indiana Jones movie: “[Raiders of the Lost Ark] was one of my favorite films, and it just oozed that golden period of serials from the 1940s — and that’s in the fifth film as well. They’re going heavily back to the first and second film and getting that original feel, the original Indy, something dense and epic.”

He’s so impressed by Harrison Ford: “It was the first time I met him, and he’s an insanely powerful person. Not just as an actor, but physically. I remember the first day we were shooting, it was a night shoot, then we stopped at 5 a.m. — and then he got on his mountain bike and went biking for 50 kilometers [31 miles]. Harrison is a monster of a man, a very nice monster.”

He doesn’t feel stressed out: “If it’s pressure, it’s a positive pressure. If I got nothing offered from the States, there would be a different kind of pressure.”

His love for working in Danish films, like the Oscar-winning Another Round: “It traveled tremendously around the world because of the lockdown, millions of people watched it. Obviously there are people who don’t know what I have done besides the franchises. They might see me in one way, but I don’t. And, luckily, directors don’t.” A remake is being developed by Leonardo DiCaprio. “If an American version of Another Round will make more people see the film than saw the original, I say, bring it on. Leonardo is a fantastic actor, so they are off to a great start.”

[From THR]

Something I enjoy about Mads is that it’s very clear, in his interviews, that he cares deeply about his films and the stories he’s telling, but he also has such maturity and perspective on everything. He doesn’t whine, he doesn’t get obsessed, there are no stories of his “Method” antics (he’s not a Method actor). He just… enjoys his job, loves the work, then he goes home and lives his life. I love that he’s on Twitter but he’s like “wow, those people are crazy.” And I also think he will be PERFECT as an Indiana Jones villain. Come on, that’s magnificent casting.

Photos courtesy of Avalon Red.

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43 Responses to “Mads Mikkelsen: Harrison Ford ‘is a monster of a man, a very nice monster’”

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  1. Harla says:

    I have an entire Pinterest board dedicated to Mads😊😊

  2. ABB says:

    I don’t feel this with every actor but there are some who play FANTASTIC villains whom I get the sense are just really lovely, kind folks in real life. He seems one of them.

    • Anners says:

      I agree! He seems like such a genuinely decent human, but plays phenomenal villains. He should be in everything. Basically just here to honk for Mads.

    • Eggbert says:


    • Lynn says:

      I had the pleasure of meeting Mads at a convention a few years ago, he was really lovely, took time to speak with fans. Very down to Earth. And just as handsome in person.

  3. GR says:

    Sigh – LOVE Mads.

  4. Luna17 says:

    I have such a crush on him and find him so sexy. He has such a presence. I’m excited for the Indiana Jones and loved them as a kid. I even asked my husband if we can name our baby on the way Indi and he said no!

  5. Lightpurple says:

    Another Round does NOT need to be remade. And Mads’s dance scene is one of the best on film. No way can DiCaprio recreate that.

    • Juju says:

      Thank you, celebitchy commenters!! I was only vaguely familiar with the movie and definitely not aware of the scene you referred to. After reading this article & comments I found the dance scene on the internet and it’s amazing. (Of course, I had to follow that up by during a search for articles and interviews too). Now
      I have got to see the movie in its entirety. Dance has played an important role in my life and this scene will be on my mind for a long time!!

      • Christine says:

        Speaking for myself, this is how CB works. You think you are reading a fluffy article with one eyeball, while you are arguing with your kid to brush his teeth, and the next thing you know, you are doing a deep dive on people you have never heard of.

  6. Seraphina says:

    I will echo same, I LOVE Mads. First noticed him in Dr. Strange. Didn’t know if I should dislike him (he was a villain) because he was so adorable in the role. I’ve been a fan ever since.

    • Shoop says:

      Seems like a lovely guy, and such a talent. He must be a breath of fresh air in Hollywood.

    • Deering24 says:

      Hee. He gets one of my all-time favorite MCU comebacks in Dr. Strange:

      Kaecilius: How long have you been at Kamar-Taj, Mister…
      Dr. Stephen Strange: Doctor!
      Kaecilius: Mr. Doctor?
      Dr. Stephen Strange: It’s Strange.
      Kaecilius: Maybe. Who am I to judge?


  7. Catlady says:

    I saw the film last night with a 12 year old niece. Mads is an a very handsome and well dressed villain. My niece was all about the niffler and bowtruckle who provide the comic relief.

  8. Lila says:

    HONK for Mads!!!

  9. Gil says:

    Those beautiful cheekbones need some moisturizer but he is looking gorgeous as always. I will watch this Fantastic Beast because Mads looks hot as always.

  10. Songs (Or It Didn't Happen) says:

    He seems so gracious. Was amazing in Hannibal and Doctor Strange, First thing I saw him in was Casino Royale.

  11. C says:

    Loved him in A Royal Affair!

  12. Kiera says:

    I will happily join whatever cult that man wants to start. I’ve said it before and stand by it now he plays scary dudes that you want to bang even thought you know it’s a terrible idea so well.

    And he’s right about Harrison, he has such a presence. Callista is tiny tiny in person by the way. Also super sweet. She rubbed my nose to help it warm up one day in the lift line cause it -20 and then got us all hot coco.

    • dj says:

      Agree Keira. I will join your Mads Cult as well. Holy cow, also I thought he was only my intense, scary one night stand fantasy! LOL.

      • Kiera says:

        @dj I was in after the first few minutes of him in Hannibal. Sure Hannibal is feeding you people but damn the man knows how to cook. Also he appreciates Puccini, well tailored clothes, philosophy, and you know he has a great wine collection.

        I have a problem ok. And i’m not ashamed at all.

  13. Jo says:

    Ok, ok, ok! Now I get how he could do the last scene of Another Round…. I had no idea he had been a dancer.

  14. RP says:

    Has Mads Mikkelsen and Viggo Mortensen ever been in a movie together? If not, that needs to happen like yesterday.

    • MerlinsMom1018 says:

      just got out of the shower and NOW I have to jump back in to cool off and calm down, thanks ever so much.
      On the other hand YASSSSSSSS for THAT movie

  15. Case says:

    He seems like a lovely person. I will say though that I can’t believe Fantastic Beasts is STILL going (with what, one or two more movies to go?) — I can’t imagine this is what Eddie Redmayne wanted to get tied down to for a decade of his career, lol.

  16. Nicole says:

    I loved him in Hannibal. His acting range is amazing.

  17. K says:

    That face that body that talent omg. He is magnificent.

  18. Talita says:

    When I first watched Hannibal, I put it as a background noise while I was doing the dishes (I know lol). I stopped immediately when I first heard Mads and that lion in the room dialogue. This man is fantastic as an actor and I love the way he seams to approach his work and life in general.

  19. Hell Nah! says:

    I first saw him in the 2006 Danish film “After The Wedding” and immediately fell into a stupor. Such a beautiful man with a smoldering intensity that jumps off the screen no matter what role he’s playing. I’m with you all – can’t get enough Mads!

    p.s. there was an American remake of ATW done several years later…don’t waste your time.

  20. Duchess of Corolla says:

    He is just perfect!

  21. amarie says:

    He is HOT stuff!! Oh and a good guy and a real professional.
    Best wishes to him always

  22. Deering24 says:

    And he was in Rhianna’s Bitch Better Have My Money video as a villainous accountant. Yum! 🥰👏🏾👏🏾😎😎😈🙃

  23. Greenswan says:

    Mads is the only actor who never disappoints with his performance, personal life and opinions, and of course, hotness.
    Everyone he’s ever worked with loves him and he has such a smart and uncomplicated outlook with everything so I’m not surprised he’s not diving into the method acting thing.
    He’s amazing in every role, especially in Hannibal. Everyone please go watch it.

  24. HeyKay says:

    Excellent actor, well spoken, tall, gorgeous, etc, etc.
    I have watched many films just because he was in them.
    Very, very good in Hannibal.

  25. FlachamBoden says:

    Another Round is perfect as is. Why do we need a remake? Btw he is so hot omg!

  26. Nic says:

    He’s a stunner, and I think he’s one of the best actors working today. In Arctic and Valhalla Rising he is on screen almost the entire time and doesn’t speak, but the amount he communicates with his face and body is actually hard to believe.

  27. Jules says:

    It’s interesting that whenever Henry Cavill comes up, people will drag his ass for his poor comments on MeToo and other stuff but Mikkelsen will always be celebrated with everyone just ignoring his very problematic takes. Even in his interview, he’s basically doing a “both sides have valid arguments” take which is just nonsense when it’s about topics such as hate for trans people or calling out abusers.

    In 2019, he said, and I quote: “One word wrong and you’re a dead person.” – people just love to ignore that he’s just as problematic because apparently he doesn’t fit the image.
    In 2017, he said that sexual misconduct should be seen on a spectrum.
    There’s another interview where he said he’s unsure about climate change.

    How does he get a free pass all the time? I don’t get it, the man’s politics are a mess.