Viggo Mortensen is awarded Stockholm Achievement Award 2020
Multiple Oscar-nominated actor Viggo Mortensen received international attention in the early 2000s with his role as Aragorn in the epic fantasy adventure trilogy The Lord of the Rings by director Peter Jackson. In the 31st edition of the Stockholm International Film Festival, Mortensen makes his debut as both director and screenwriter with the complex psychological drama Falling, where he also masters the lead role. He is now awarded the honorable Stockholm Achievement Award 2020.
Motivation: With a wide range of role interpretations such as Ben in Captain Fantastic to Aragorn and his many collaborations with Cronenberg, Viggo Mortensen has enchanted a vast audience around the world. Through an ability to express mystery, strength and sensitivity, all at the same time, his acting adds a captivating energy to the film's visual narrative. It is a great honor to honor Viggo Mortensen with the Stockholm Achievement Award 2020 – a true tribute to his influential career both as an actor and director.
Whether Viggo Mortensen plays a Russian gangster, a family father with a troubled past or Sigmund Freud, he finds methods to turn the audience's expectations. With great credibility and dedication, he creates sympathetic characters who linger for a long time. Beyond the film, renaissance man Mortensen gets an outlet for his creative ideas through photography, poetry, music and abstract art. Now, ’director’ can also be added to the list – Falling is his debut behind the camera. In addition to directing, Mortensen is also responsible for the script and acts as one of the main roles.
Falling is a complex psychological drama that depicts openly homosexual John, played by Mortensen, whose conservative and homophobic father Willis, played by Lance Henriksen, begins to show symptoms of dementia. As a direct consequence, Willis is forced to sell the old family farm and move to Los Angeles to live with John and his husband Eric. The film had its world premiere at the Sundance Film Festival and has also been screened at major film festivals such as the Toronto International Film Festival and the San Sebastián Film Festival. In a sensible way, a father- son relationship is portrayed with brilliant role interpretations by both Mortensen, Henriksen and Swedish actor Sverrir Gudnason, who has a leading role as the young Willis.
Stockholm Achievement Award is presented to an individual in honor and acknowledgement of their contribution to the world of film. Previous recipients of the award are, among others, Uma Thurman, Willem Dafoe and Ellen Burstyn. The prestigious prize, the 7.3 kilogram Bronshästen (Bronze Horse) – the world's heaviest film prize – is a paraphrase of the Swedish Dalecarlian horse and was created by Swedish designer Fredrik Swärd.