Viggo Mortensen - The Anti-star

Source: Paris Match

© New Line Cinema/Warner Brothers.
Paris Match: Appaloosa is a traditional western?

Viggo Mortensen: The film paints a pictue of the relationship between two men who bring justice to towns. Their adventure occurs at the end of a way of life with the progressive arrival of civilization. It is a traditional western in which there are eternal themes, but Ed Harris has modernized the delivery of them.

Is it true that you are rather involved on a film set?

I ask questions, but I do what is asked of me, even when the answer does not satisfy me. Here, I liked the story and I knew Ed Harris' work as director (Pollock) and as an actor since we had worked together on A History of Violence. I had committed myself to accompany him and, no matter what happens, I remain faithful to my word.

Did you begrudge having to adapt to your celebrity?

It doesn't bother me that people approach me in the street as if they knew me. It is usually positive and nice. But I do not spend my time looking for the magazines to validate my existence or calling my agent to check the degree of my popularity. Celebrity does not prevent me from carrying on in the way I would like.

Do you like being alone?

I have a contemplative nature. I like to ride horses alone with nature and to walk in a city at night, when the streets are deserted. I love to drive on long roads in the middle of nowhere. I need loneliness to compensate for the social interaction which are demanded in the trade of an actor.

You were brought up overseas. Do you keep any memories?

I spent all my childhood in Argentina and I feel at home in the Hispanic countries and cultures. In Denmark, I discovered the sense of family and a certain work ethic. I am very close to my uncles, aunts, cousins and I am emotionally very open with them. I am a strange mixture of very methodical North and more chaotic South.

What is it that you do to be considered a sex symbol?

Without wanting to disrespect those which elected me among the "fifty most beautiful men on the planet", that amuses me. If I take this idea too seriously, I find it absurd, but I prefer to say thank you, it is nice.

You will be 50 years old, it that difficult to head for?

I age, but I'm starting to know myself. Today, I'm heading in a direction which is appropriate to me. I'm no longer afraid to say, no.

You are more self-assured?

Too much self-confidence leads very quickly to arrogance. But it is not necessary for doubt to prevent you from benefitting from the good moments with people whom you love. It is better to live than to watch life.

What kind of father are you to your 20 year old son, Henry?

We have been like two friends since he was very small. We discuss everything, but I don't have anything I can learn from him. He understands everything on his own. Henry is compassionate, open and very respectful of those around him.

Are you a happy man?

To be honest, this year, my personal life was painful. But I am optimistic for the future.
Last edited: 18 January 2009 10:33:15
© Paris Match.