“I’m a real Swede! In fact, I’m a quarter Finnish. Here I go, exploding stereotypes.” - Alicia Vikander. The intensity and the depth of the statement sum up Alicia Vikander.
We all loved the immaculate portrayal of Gerda Wegener in “The Danish Girl” didn’t we? The sublimity through which 27-year-old Alicia Vikander emulated the iconic character of Gerda Wegener catapulted her to fame and recognition. The movie earned the Swede her first Oscar award (Best Supporting Actress); it was only the second instance since 1975 where a swede had won an Oscar, a truly fitting testament to Vikander’s soul-bearing emotional performance.
Exquisite and intriguing professionally, 5' 5" tall Alicia Vikander is as much glowing and glittering personally. Born in Gothenburg, Sweden on October 3, 1988, Vikander began acting early as a child in The Goteborg Opera and trained at the Royal Swedish Ballet School in Stockholm and the School of American Ballet in New York. It is a tale of perseverance on how Alicia Vikander transformed herself as one of the leading lady actresses in the Industry from a ballet dancer.
Alicia Vikander leads a normal and private life, full of adventures and shy from all the glitz, glamor, and clamour that make a celebrity. She is currently dating actor Michael Fassbender and she often recollects the times she spent with her mom and dad, calling it fascinating times.
Alicia Vikander’s days as a Ballerina
Alicia Vikander recalls her ballerina days as the stepping stone in her career. She trained in Ballet from the age of nine, travelled around the world for summer courses that led her once to the School of American Ballet in New York. Vikander left the Ballet school owing to injuries and her desire to focus on acting in her late teens. The decision was the best she ever made if we take into account the dizzying heights of success she has reached this early in her career. “I push myself hard,” she reminisces. “I don’t like pain, exactly, but as a ballerina, I lived in constant pain. At ballet school in Stockholm, I remember we had a locker, where if someone had been to the doctor and gotten painkillers, we divided them among us. In a sense, we were all addicted. After I quit dancing, for a while it felt strange not to be in pain. It was as if an old friend, not a good friend but a presence, always tagging along, had left me.”
Vikander’s leap from short films to mainstream Hollywood
Alicia Vikander tried her luck in the TV series after she was turned down twice by drama school. Vikander began to transform herself from a ballet dancer to professional actor. She garnered recognition after her depiction of Jossan Tegebrandt Björn in the popular Swedish drama Andra Avenyn.
It was the performance in her debut feature film ‘Pure’ (2010) that escalated her demand as an actress. Alicia Vikander bagged the Rising Star Award in 2010 at the Stockholm Film Festival, the Shooting Star Award at the Berlin International Film Festival and the prestigious Guldbagge Award for Best Actress for her performance in ‘Pure’.
Post ‘Pure’, Alicia Vikander starred in movies one after another. She started gaining popularity for her versatility as an actor and how effortlessly she walked into the shoes of any characters that were given. ‘Anna Karenina’ (2012) saw her leapfrog to international attention for her reprisal of ‘Kitty’ in the English adaptation of Leo Tolstoy’s classic story of doomed love. The film premiered at the 2012 Toronto Film Festival.
‘A Royal Affair’ (2012),’ The Fifth Estate’ (2013), ‘Hotell’(2013) are some of Alicia Vikander’s acclaimed works. Vikander also appeared in a crime thriller, ‘Son of a Gun’ (2014), but the movie received mixed reviews.
Alicia Vikander co-starred alongside Kit Harrington (Jon Snow in the Game of Thrones) in ‘Testament of Youth’ (2014). The movie received positive reviews and award nominations for the swede.
2015 was memorable for Alicia Vikander, as she won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress, her first major honor as an actress that also saw Sweden’s first Oscar since 1975. ‘Ex Machina’ (2015), ‘Seventh Son’ (2015), ‘Ingrid Bergman: In Her Own Words’ (2015) are some of her critically lauded movies.
Upon being asked about how she was feeling, she replied gazing her familiar face, with its deeply golden complexion and wide-set brown eyes, “To be quite honest, it’s nerve-racking, the way these films sort of piled up,” she says. “It’s a mixed feeling when everything you’ve ever wanted in making films is coming true, and yet you feel scared because it’s happening all at once. Suddenly you’re in rooms with people you’ve looked up to for years, the Judi Denches. You wonder if you’re good, if you have what it takes. You carry an anxiety around with you—I’ve met many actors now who will say this—and the lonely feeling that this could be your one chance.”
Alicia Vikander’s Future projects
Alicia Vikander starred opposite Matt Damon in ‘Jason Bourne’ (2016) and has several other projects lined up, while the most awaited movie of the lot is ‘The Light Between Oceans’ (2016), starring her boyfriend Michael Fassbender. The movie is scheduled for an early September release and everyone is curious to know whether the couple has gelled together on screen. Vikander’s most appealing project is’ Lara Croft’, the third Tomb Raider film, replacing Angelina Jolie.
‘Submergence’ and ‘Tulip Fever’ are the upcoming Alicia Vikander movies lined up for release in 2017.
Alicia Vikander accredits her overnight fame to her dedication, her struggling days as a ballerina and the drive and motivation to push herself beyond normalcy.
“Your job as an actor is to try to understand your character’s humanity,” Alicia Vikander’s subtle comprehension is enough to let everyone get the measure of her talent and splendour.