Alexander Skarsgård on how The Northman compares to other Viking-inspired movies he’s seen, including Thor: Ragnarok

We wouldn’t have guessed this years ago but, lately, the Vikings genre has had an uprising. Between the extremely popular vikings series from The History Channelto its Netflix spin-off, as well as How to train your dragon, The Last Kingdom and the Thor movies, there have been plenty of successful properties inspired by Scandinavian sailors. And this weekend, Alexander Skarsgård stars as a Viking warrior prince in The man from the northwhich stands out from other films of the genre.

The man from the north is an A24 film from writer/director Robert Eggers, who has already directed critically acclaimed favorites The witch and Lighthouse. As Skarsgård talked about his latest film, he shared the story behind the film with these words:

How this idea came about, about 10 years ago I started thinking about the fact that I had never seen a historically accurate depiction of the Viking Age. I’ve never seen a great epic viking adventure movie based on the old Icelandic sagas that captures the terse tone that’s really harsh, just like the scenery. It started to percolate in my head why I never really saw this.

Alexander Skarsgård, who is a producer on The man from the north (and got seriously torn up to play the lead role) Told Movie Slash that ten years ago he longed to see the Viking Age represented in a historically accurate way, but he had never seen it happen. Skarsgård was born in Sweden, so his ancestors may be directly aligned with the Vikings.

Of course, his father is Stellan Skarsgård, who coincidentally starred in two of Thor movies. Young Skarsgård talked about the difference between The man from the north and Marvel’s depictions of Norse mythology:

I think ‘Thor’ films are wonderful, and they obviously require a lot of creative freedom. They’re very inspired by a lot of old sagas and have elements of them, but they’ve morphed into something else. I think they are great fun. Taika [Waititi] is a dear friend of mine, he did an amazing job on his movie ‘Thor’. I loved it, I thought it was super funny, but I still wondered why there had never been a more realistic or grounded viking movie.

The man from the north features an amazing cast including Nicole Kidman, Ethan Hawke, Anya Taylor-Joy, Willem Dafoe and Björk. The film was born out of Alexander Skarsgård’s desire to make a Viking film, which then turned into a discussion with Robert Eggers, who co-wrote and directed it. The movie is a action epic that serves as a tale of revenge for a Viking prince who seeks justice for the murder of his father.

Thor, on the other hand, is based on Norse mythology and Marvel comics, which makes it a whole lot brighter than the grimy, unrelenting world of The man from the north. Chris Hemsworth’s God of Thunder will return this summer with Thor: Love and Thunder.

The movie won rave reviews from critics overall, with CinemaBlend also giving the movie a great 4.5 out of 5 stars in our review. The site’s Eric Eisenberg called the film “mesmerizing” and “special” when describing his experience with the film. The film managed to reach number four at the box office in its opening weekend, earning $12 million. It’s a special film, made all the more unique by its loyalty to Viking culture.

Discover our interviews with the cast of The man from the north and stay informed of the next 2022 movie releases coming to CinemaBlend.

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