Alexander Skarsgard: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know

Actor Alexander Skarsgard attends the premiere of Warner Bros. Pictures' "The Legend of Tarzan" in Hollywood, California.  (Getty).

Actor Alexander Skarsgard attends the premiere of Warner Bros. Pictures’ “The Legend of Tarzan” in Hollywood, California. (Getty)

As The Legend of Tarzan hits movie screens, many moviegoers are wondering: Who is the impossibly athletic, handsome and stoic leading man who swings on vines so easily?

He’s Alexander Skarsgard, a Swede, whose best known role before he fell in love with Margot Robbie’s Jane was as a vampire in the television series, True Blood. He’s also from an iconic acting family.

The movie retells the old tale in a new way, by starting after Tarzan is already in England, occupying his role as John Clayton, Third Viscount Greystoke. He returns to Africa, where he was raised by gorillas, to confront an old enemy and a new one.

THE LEGEND OF TARZAN – Official Trailer 2Alexander Skarsgård stars in THE LEGEND OF TARZAN – in theaters July 2016. http://legendoftarzan.com http://facebook.com/legendoftarzan — From Warner Bros. Pictures and Village Roadshow Pictures comes the action adventure “The Legend of Tarzan,” starring Alexander Skarsgård (HBO’s “True Blood”) as the legendary character created by Edgar Rice Burroughs. The film also stars Oscar nominee Samuel L. Jackson (“Pulp Fiction,” the “Captain America” films), Margot Robbie (“The Wolf of Wall Street”), Oscar nominee Djimon Hounsou (“Blood Diamond,” “Gladiator”), Oscar nominee John Hurt (“The Elephant Man,” the “Harry Potter” films), with Oscar winner Jim Broadbent (“Iris”), and two-time Academy Award winner Christoph Waltz (“Inglourious Basterds,” “Django Unchained”). It has been years since the man once known as Tarzan (Skarsgård) left the jungles of Africa behind for a gentrified life as John Clayton III, Lord Greystoke, with his beloved wife, Jane (Robbie) at his side. Now, he has been invited back to the Congo to serve as a trade emissary of Parliament, unaware that he is a pawn in a deadly convergence of greed and revenge, masterminded by the Belgian, Captain Leon Rom (Waltz). But those behind the murderous plot have no idea what they are about to unleash. David Yates (the final four “Harry Potter” films, upcoming “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them”) directed “The Legend of Tarzan” from a screenplay by Adam Cozad and Craig Brewer, story by Brewer and Cozad based on the Tarzan stories created by Burroughs. Legendary producer Jerry Weintraub (“Behind the Candelabra,” the “Ocean’s” trilogy) produced the film, together with David Barron (the “Harry Potter” films, “Cinderella”), Alan Riche (“Southpaw”) and Tony Ludwig (“Starsky & Hutch”). Susan Ekins, Nikolas Korda, Keith Goldberg, David Yates, Mike Richardson and Bruce Berman served as executive producers. The behind-the-scenes creative team included director of photography Henry Braham (“The Golden Compass”), Oscar-winning production designer Stuart Craig (“Dangerous Liaisons,” “The English Patient,” the “Harry Potter” films), editor Mark Day (“Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Parts 1 & 2”), and Oscar-nominated costume designer Ruth Myers (“Emma,” “Unknown”). “The Legend of Tarzan” was shot at Warner Bros. Studios, Leavesden, as well as on location around the UK. A Jerry Weintraub production, “The Legend of Tarzan” is slated for release on July 1, 2016. The film will be distributed in 2D and 3D in select theatres and IMAX by Warner Bros. Pictures, a Warner Bros. Entertainment Company, and in select territories by Village Roadshow Pictures.2016-03-17T13:00:16.000Z

Here’s what you need to know:


1. Alexander Skarsgard Went on an Insane Diet to Get In Shape for Tarzan

Alexander Skarsgard's Insane Diet To Get Jacked As Tarzan – CONAN on TBSTo be the real King of the Jungle, Alexander's life revolved around eating tons of bland, flavorless protein. More CONAN @ http://teamcoco.com/video Team Coco is the official YouTube channel of late night host Conan O'Brien, CONAN on TBS & TeamCoco.com. Subscribe now to be updated on the latest videos: http://bit.ly/W5wt5D For Full Episodes of CONAN on TBS, visit http://teamcoco.com/video Get Social With Team Coco: On Facebook: ‪https://www.facebook.com/TeamCoco‬ On Google+: https://plus.google.com/+TeamCoco/ On Twitter: http://twitter.com/TeamCoco On Tumblr: http://teamcoco.tumblr.com On YouTube: http://youtube.com/teamcoco Follow Conan O'Brien on Twitter: http://twitter.com/ConanOBrien2016-06-29T18:22:09.000Z

The 6-foot 4 1/2-inch tall Skarsgard told talk show host Conan O’Brien he ate chicken breasts and broccoli for nine months straight to prepare for his Tarzan role, as well as undergoing training. He swore off sugar, cream, and processed carbs. He ate six meals a day, but the portions were extremely small, so he always felt hungry.

From the number of shirtless scenes in The Legend of Tarzan, it appears all of the work paid off. Sadly, some of the reviews are mixed or not good.


2. Alexander Skarsgard Stars as a Viking Vampire in True Blood

Alexander Skarsgard arrives at the HBO 'True Blood' season 5 premiere after party in 2012. (Getty)

Alexander Skarsgard arrives at the HBO ‘True Blood’ season 5 premiere after party in 2012. (Getty)

Fans of the Vampire television series on HBO will recognize Alexander Skarsgard for his role as Eric Northman, which Interview Magazine describes as “a millennium-old Viking vampire who favors silk robes and keeps busy with his work as both area sheriff and as a budding nightlife impresario.” Celebrity Net Worth reports his net worth at $12 million, partly due to a $275,000 per episode salary for True Blood.

Before True Blood, Skarsgard appeared In a bit part as a male model in 2001’s Zoolander. Some of his lines ended up on the cutting room floor.

Deleted alternate scene Alexander Skarsgard in ZoolanderAn alternate deleted scene from Zoolander with Alexander Skarsgard as Meekus from the collector's edition of Zoolander. Ben Stiller's commentary said that they first filmed it with everyone prefacing their lines with "Earth too…" and they thought it was really funny but others didn't so the final scene cut down on their Earth To's2009-08-17T20:06:58.000Z

His profile started to rise in America in 2008, when he co-starred in Generation Kill, an HBO miniseries in which he played a U.S. Marine Sergeant fighting in Iraq.


3. Skarsgard’s Father Is the Famous Actor, Stellan Skarsgard

Stellan Skarsgard attends the 'Cinderella' press conference during the 65th Berlinale International Film Festival. (Getty)

Stellan Skarsgard attends the ‘Cinderella’ press conference during the 65th Berlinale International Film Festival. (Getty)

Stellan Skarsgard, Alexander’s father, has starred in his own share of Hollywood blockbusters, including Thor, Good Will Hunting, and Mamma Mia! Entertainment Weekly says that Alexander Skarsgard grew up watching old Tarzan movies in his home. The magazine calls Skarsgard’s dad a “Tarzan superfan.” According to GQ, Stellan is Sweden’s biggest movie star.

Alexander was born in Stockholm, Sweden on August 25, 1976, according to IMDB.com. He grew up in a popular neighborhood called SoFo, says Marie Claire. His father’s acting breakthrough did not come until 1996, though, when Alexander was already an adult, although Stellan was a stage actor first. Alexander was raised in a working class home. His mother, My Skarsgard, is a physician.

Alexander started acting at age eight and continued working on Swedish television and in movies throughout his teenage years. He stopped acting for a time to get an education. Father and son acted together in the 2011 movie, Melancholia. He told Mr. Porter that his childhood was an idyllic one, “It was an incredible childhood, it really was. No one ever locked the doors. We didn’t even have keys.”


4. He kissed Lady Gaga in a Music Video but He Has a Girlfriend

Skarsgard can be found kissing Lady Gaga in her 2009 music video for “Paparazzi.” You can spot him at about 1:30 in, passionately making out with the singer against a balcony railing.

Lady Gaga – Paparazzi (Official Music Video)REMASTERED IN HD! Listen to brand new music from Bradley Cooper & Lady Gaga from the 'A Star Is Born' Soundtrack: http://smarturl.it/ASIBSoundtrack Follow Lady Gaga: Facebook: http://gaga.lk/facebook Twitter: http://gaga.lk/Twitter Instagram: http://gaga.lk/Instagram Snapchat: http://gaga.lk/Snapchat Spotify: http://gaga.lk/Spotify Email List: http://gaga.lk/News Music video by Lady Gaga performing Paparazzi. (C) 2009 Interscope Records #Remastered2009-11-26T01:46:17.000Z

However, UK Daily Mail says he is dating the British fashion model and “It Girl” Alexa Chung. Alexa frequently posts pictures of the couple on Instagram.

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Alexander Skarsgard and Alexa Chung? #couple #trueblood

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ENews reports the couple has been dating since 2015 but, when asked by a fan if he was planning to get married to Chung in the next year, Skarsgard said, “Not that I know of.”

He’s made similar comments to the news site Mr. Porter, saying, “I’m not married. I don’t have kids. I feel OK about it. No midlife crisis yet.”

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5. Skarsgard Said He Was Comfortable Being Half Naked in Tarzan

Alexander Skarsgard with the other cast members of The Legend of Tarzan. (Getty)

Alexander Skarsgard with the other cast members of The Legend of Tarzan. (Getty)

Alexander told Conan O’Brien that he didn’t mind spending so much time half naked in Tarzan. He said people are more comfortable with nudity in Sweden, calling his dad an “old hippie” and “Bohemian” who walked around naked. Yes, he actually said that!

Alexander Skarsgard Is Cool With Being NakedIt's a Swedish trait he picked up from his dad, who loved to cook buck nude. More CONAN @ http://teamcoco.com/video Team Coco is the official YouTube channel of late night host Conan O'Brien, CONAN on TBS & TeamCoco.com. Subscribe now to be updated on the latest videos: http://bit.ly/W5wt5D For Full Episodes of CONAN on TBS, visit http://teamcoco.com/video Get Social With Team Coco: On Facebook: ‪https://www.facebook.com/TeamCoco‬ On Google+: https://plus.google.com/+TeamCoco/ On Twitter: http://twitter.com/TeamCoco On Tumblr: http://teamcoco.tumblr.com On YouTube: http://youtube.com/teamcoco Follow Conan O'Brien on Twitter: http://twitter.com/ConanOBrien2013-06-06T09:15:34.000Z