Viggo Mortensen's South American Connections On Screen
16 June 2012
The actor takes part in two long features by two directors from the continent where he lived.
© Haddock Films.
Two feature films that will this year bring the American Viggo Mortensen back to the screen were helmed by South American directors: On the Road, by Brazilian Walter Salles, that arrives in Brazil on 13 July, and Todos tenemos un plan, by the Argentinian Ana Piterbarg, scheduled for 30 August. Last Sunday, Salles adaptation of Jack Kerouac´s novel was shown at the Sydney Film Festival in Australia, garnering praise for the 53 year old actor, who talks about a feeling of returning to the past when he comments about the two films. For Mortensen, the interchange on the set with Salles and Ana evoked memories of his childhood in the 1960s when he lived between Venezuela and Argentina.
"The contact with Walter made me remember the musicality that marks your way of talking in South America, either in Spanish or Portuguese. I am very interested in filmmakers from Latin America seeking to do personal films, without rules," Mortensen told Globo, during the Cannes Film Festival in May, where On the Road competed for the Palme d'Or.
Supporter of San Lorenzo, the Argentinian soccer team, Mortensen plays Old Bull Lee in On the Road, Kerouac's fictional version of the writer William S. Burroughs (1914-1997).
"I had already worked with a Brazilian before, Vicente Amorim, carioca [trans. note: people born in Rio] like Walter, who directed me in Good, in 2008. Walter valued our time of preparation, something quite different to the way I´ve got used to in the films of David Cronenberg, who doesn´t even rehearse," says Mortensen, referring to the Canadian filmmaker with whom he shot A History of Violence (2005), Eastern Promises (2007) and A Dangerous Method, in theaters in Brazil since March.
In Todos tenemos un plan, a project by the same producer of The Secret of Their Eyes (2009), newcomer Ana Piterbarg turns Mortensen into Agustín, a man who assumes the identity of his late twin brother, with ties to the underworld. One of the main Argentine actresses, Soledad Villamil, plays opposite Mortensen.
"As a boy in Argentina, my mother (a New Yorker married to a Dane who managed farms in South America) would pick me up at school and would take me to the cinema to see movies. There I discovered the language of art and the contradictions of a culture that welcomed me," says Mortensen, who in 2013 will film with Cronenberg the sequel to Eastern Promises, a film that brought him an Oscar nomination. "I want to film with Lisandro Alonso, the Argentinian director of experimental cinema. We are fine tuning a project."
Last edited: 27 July 2012 08:00:29