15 Movies and TV Shows That Prove Mads Mikkelsen Is a Jack of All Trades
If you’re not already a diehard Mads Mikkelsen fan, you’ve no doubt at least seen him pop up in movies and TV shows over the years. Despite the fact he’s most well-known for playing complicated villains, the Danish actor has mastered everything from delicate performances in romantic foreign films to vengeance-filled Westerns, including “Hannibal” and “Doctor Strange.” His most recent roles in “Riders of Justice” and “Death Stranding” and the upcoming “Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore” are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to this talented, dynamic actor, so check out some highlights from his extensive history in Hollywood ahead.
In what might be his most iconic role to date, Mikkelsen starred in NBC’s “Hannibal” as the brilliant psychiatrist and cannibalistic serial killer before the show was cancelled in 2015. The fandom behind “Hannibal” is incredibly strong, and when you consider just how creepy, dark, and incredible the chemistry between Hannibal and criminal profiler Will Graham (Hugh Dancy) is, you’ll get a taste for why there’s such a fervor surrounding Mikkelsen.
"A Royal Affair"
If you’re used to seeing Mikkelsen play more villainous roles, you need to check out 2012’s “A Royal Affair.” He stars as physician Johann Friedrich Struensee, who falls in love and begins an affair with Princess Caroline Matilda of Great Britain (Oscar-winner Alicia Vikander, who had to learn how to speak Dutch in just two months for her role). It’s tragic and romantic, and a must watch for anyone looking to see the actor’s softer side.
Mikkelsen is transported to the wild, wild West in this 2014 Western costarring Jeffrey Dean Morgan. He stars as Jon Jensen, an ordinary American settler in 1870s America, whose wife and child are raped and brutally murdered by a gang of outlaws. Jon tracks down those responsible and kills them as revenge, only to incite the anger of a nearby gang leader (Morgan) whose brother is one of the ones Jon kills.
"Coco Chanel & Igor Stravinsky"
This underrated French film came out in 2009, and is based on the 2002 fictional novel “Coco and Igor” by Chris Greenhalgh. The movie details the passionate affair between famed clothing designer Coco Chanel (Anna Mouglalis) and Russian composer Igor Stravinsky (Mikkelsen), who brings his ill wife and children to live in Coco’s villa outside of Paris. Though largely fictionalised, it’s their breakup that supposedly inspires Chanel’s iconic Chanel No. 5 perfume and Stravinsky to compose one of his most renowned pieces of music.
Dr. Stephen Strange faces off against Mikkelsen’s power-hungry Kaecilius in the latest superhero movie from Marvel. His role isn’t as meaty as ones he’s had in the past, but there’s a memorable (and kind of hilarious) fight scene with Strange that we can’t stop thinking about.
Is there any time period that this man has not mastered? “King Arthur” might not be the greatest movie about the Camelot-era out there, but Mikkelsen does a bang-up job as one of the knights of the Round Table, Tristan. Coincidentally, it also features his “Hannibal” costar Dancy, who plays fellow knight Galahad.
If you want to see a masterclass in villainy, Mikkelsen’s role as Le Chiffre in 2006’s “Casino Royale” is one of the best. James Bond (Daniel Craig) finds himself entangled with the French financier of terrorism in a dangerous game of cat and mouse (and Texas Hold ‘Em). At one point, Le Chiffre comes dangerously close to cutting off Bond’s manhood, and honestly we’ve never been able to look at Mikkelsen the same way since.
Mikkelsen goes full psychopath in “Charlie Countryman” as the unstable, chaotic ex-husband of a young woman (Evan Rachel Wood) who’s in the midst of falling in love with a new man (Shia LaBeouf). The 2013 indie film is uneven and kind of a mixed bag, but the cast is sharp and makes the movie worth checking out.
"Clash of the Titans"
If you’re looking for harmless fantasy fun, “Clash of the Titans” is your best bet. With Mikkelsen and Sam Worthington starring as Draco and Perseus, respectively, there’s just as much eye candy as there are terrifying mythological creatures.
"Rogue One: A Star Wars Story"
In the latest Star Wars flick, Mikkelsen will star as Galen Erso – the father of Felicity Jones’s character, Jyn – who is wanted by both the Rebellion and the Empire for his knowledge.
“Survival is its own journey” is the tagline for 2018’s “Arctic,” in which Mikkelsen plays a stranded pilot trying to survive in the Arctic after his plane crashes. In the solo survival film, he’s faced with the decision of staying somewhat safe in his crashed plane or trekking across the dangerous frozen tundra in hopes of returning to civilization.
Set in a small Danish village around Christmas time, “The Hunt” follows a kindergarten teacher after being falsely accused of sexually abusing one of his students. Mikkelsen won best actor at the 65th Cannes Film Festival for his gripping performance, and the film was nominated for best foreign language film at the 86th annual Academy Awards.