At 33, he is the oldest of Stellan's six children from his first marriage: three of his brothers – Gustav, 29, Bill, 20, and Valter, 14, have established acting careers. Sam, 28, has also dabbled in the family business. His sister, Eija, 18, is a model; his mother, My, a doctor. He grew up in Stockholm, on the island of Södermalm. Family life, he says, was 'pretty chaotic', the atmosphere 'very liberal'. His father strolled around naked a lot.
The sight of Alexander Skarsgård getting undressed is enough to send "True Blood" fanatics -- and, well, pretty much everyone else -- into fits of screams and squeals. At least in America, anyway.
Skarsgård, a proud native of Sweden, says that his home country is a lot more nonchalant about the human body than his adopted land. Americans, he observes in the new issue of Out Magazine, always seem enthralled or scandalized by anything non-PG on television -- at least when it comes to sex.
Despite his male model-worthy looks and popularity with the fashion community, True Blood's Alexander Skarsgård has remained a rare exception in the oversaturated world of designer-actor-musician collaborations, never formally endorsing any label or brand. Maybe he's simply been saving himself for a truly a propos opportunity, which appears to have arrived, thanks to Calvin Klein. The sexy and stern luxury empire has cast the sexy and stern Skarsgård as the face for its new men's fragrance, Encounter.
Although he is largely based in LA, it is clear that Skarsgård's heart belongs to Sweden, where he grew up in the now-popular neighbourhood of SoFo (south of Folkungagatan). His family owns a house on one of the islands in the Stockholm archipelago, and the actor makes a point of going back as often as he can.
He's almost as ice cool in person as his two most famous characters to date: Sergeant Brad "Iceman" Colbert in Generation Kill, the HBO mini-series about the US invasion of Iraq, and Eric in True Blood, currently into its second series on Channel 4.
Skarsgård was keen to work on True Blood before even seeing a script.
Acting runs in his Swedish blood -- his dad is thespian Stellan Skarsgard. He's aware of Hollywood's legacy system, but insists he's not trying to eclipse dear old dad.
"I don't think I came to acting to compete with my father. But, you know, he wasn't around as much as normal dads, and seeing his passion … Maybe it was a way to get his attention," he said.
He eventually landed a small part in the Ben Stiller comedy "Zoolander" before going on to star in HBO's 2008 acclaimed Iraq war mini-series "Generation Kill," and then "True Blood." He's now poised to make the leap to a career on the big screen with two films due out before the end of the year: Rod Lurie's remake of Sam Peckinpah's controversial "Straw Dogs" and Lars von Trier's elegiac sci-fi meditation "Melancholia," which shot in Sweden and allowed him to work again briefly with Stellan.
But it’s True Blood’s wickedly sexy vampire sheriff Eric Northman that made him a bona fide sex symbol. Now, at 33, Skarsgård is in such high demand—both here and in Sweden—he shot two films simultaneously during his last hiatus. And his chiseled, athletic frame and riveting pale blue eyes have sent fans into such a worshipful tizzy they’ve given themselves a name: Skarsgårdians.
Skarsgard's take on Eric is a little bit Gordon Gekko from Wall Street (he's so mean) mixed with a little Mr. Darcy (he's so misunderstood). His character lurked in the shadows in season one—"I was a glorified extra," he says—but he's quickly become a pivotal part of the show.
True Blood star Alexander Skarsgard had some clothes on for once today when he donned a mortar board and gown to collect an honorary degree from Leeds Metropolitan University - despite having dropped out of his studies after just six months there.
The Swedish star, 34, who is best known as vampire Eric Northman in the hit show, was presented with an honorary doctorate degree in the arts at the northern seat of learning today.