Viggo on Hopkins

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Viggo on Hopkins

"It's based on a real person and a real horse," Mortensen says. "But we take some liberties, for a good reason. Myth-making is a way of dreaming out loud or dreaming in public. . . "

Viggo Mortensen
A Man of Many Parts
Teresa Wiltz
Washington Post, 2004




'Frank is not some kind of 'holy' person. He's a flawed person sort of stumbling around.'

Viggo Mortensen
An Interview with Viggo
by Lise Balk King and Frank J King
Native Voice, January 2004




'You can go talk to people on the Pine Ridge Reservation today, and they'll tell you many stories about Hopkins that have been handed down through generations. John Fusco learned of Hopkins on the reservation. Much of his information for writing the screenplay is from Native Americans - Lakota, Blackfeet, and others - who have no reason to promote a white guy, really. He also received a lot of validating information from white ranchers in the West who knew about him and admired his work with mustangs and in long-distance racing.

He was way ahead of his time in the way he trained horses. There's a lot made of natural horsemanship these days, but Hopkins was writing about this 70 years ago. Horse people still talk about what he wrote as being ahead of its time. I mean it's indisputable that he rode and trained and raced.'

Viggo Mortensen on the Frank Hopkins controversy
A Visit With Viggo
By Marianne Love
Sandpoint magazine, 2004




'It is good to have a movie that's old-fashioned and treats cowboys with respect. But all that can get lost when you get the 'Oh, I heard it's not true' comments. I can't believe that I had to spend half my time on the press tours dealing with that. My job became primarily to defend the movie's right to exist! It's a movie based on a true event, not a documentary. And it is a hell of a ride. That ought to be good enough - is for most movies - few of which can hold a candle to Hidalgo.'

Viggo Mortensen on the Frank Hopkins controversy
A Visit With Viggo
By Marianne Love
Sandpoint magazine, 2004




"I think that's kind of healthy, for people to see an American heroic character in a big-budget studio movie who goes to the Middle East not to blow up a bunch of stuff or instruct people in the American way," he says. "He learns along the way, not only about himself and what he and his horse are capable of but also about those he's competing against. And then he goes home. It's another story, like 'Lord of the Rings,' where the lessons learned on the journey are more important than the destination."

V IS FOR VIGGO
by Hugh Hart
San Francisco Chronicle, 2003

Last edited: 16 February 2010 11:24:37