Source: Vision Hoglandet Magazine  [edited]

Date: May 13, 2013

Our Swedish Hollywood hunk is more successful than ever and he has just released his second autobiography. He lives his dream, but as a red thread throughout his life, doubt remains no matter what success and fame he attains. There is doubt if he is really good enough but also in the brief moments of happiness when he feels he is.

It's not a flattering self-portrait that Michael Nyqvist gives us in his second autobiography "Dance for us".

At the age of 52, Michael has not managed to master his stage fright. As a little boy, he thought he looked like a semla - a cream-filled Swedish bun. Today he is one of our most engaged actors, especially in Hollywood where his career has rocketed, especially after the success of the Millennium Trilogy. Despite the successes after 30 years in the acting profession, he seeks as much confirmation today as when he was little. As a child he stood dancing and singing for the guests his parents had invited home for dinner.

"I was asked to behave. I became Jonny Rocker in the living room. It was a cool feeling..."

Imagine you're in a big Hollywood movie, sitting and sweating, dressed in a tuxedo at the premiere. You're expecting to see your performance and then you notice that many scenes are deleted.

"In the USA's major productions, it's more commercial there. They never told me that my scenes would be deleted. In my eyes, they were the best scenes, so of course I was shocked... (This is described in his book). You are in someone else's hands. Someone else has made these decisions. I think we all encounter this powerlessness a little bit everywhere, for example, in marriage or in different jobs."

"To me, doubt is an incredible rocket fuel for creativity, a necessary evil. Doubt leads to useful self-examination that we all need. Just look at the great prophets. They are all doubtless as a factor - one should doubt his God and his thesis, or else you will not develop...  From my shortcomings, I have had experiences that I have developed from. When in doubt, it's terrible, but afterwards you can see how you've developed. Two steps backwards, one step forward."

One could easily believe that Michael's sense of doubt is linked to poor self-esteem, but it is not.

"No... But to have self-esteem, be aware and dare to have shortcomings, that's another matter..."

Was the theater the world you dreamed of?

"Today I think the theater is incredibly much better than I could ever imagine. I meet so many amazing people. I run around in various hats and caps and play theater in the world's various corners with different world stars. People come up and thank me for different movies. That's wonderful."

What are you like as a father?

"I'm probably pretty shy and curious. We have fun together as a family. I can be afraid that my life takes too much focus in the family. I have felt that throughout the children's upbringing. One of my children is engaged in art and the other with music. We often say that we are proud of each other. But I think, for example, it feels awkward when I'm going to be tied to my children's exhibition. I do not want to be the focus there. It's a difficult situation when I would prefer to sneak into the swamp of anonymity."

"I bring my family as much as I can on my travels and jobs abroad. It's fun. We experience a lot together. A trip every three weeks will be enough. But the kids go to school so it's not as easy to bring them as it is to bring Catharina.

The most important thing to Michael is honesty.

"To be honest is the whole thing. That's what it's all about. I am so tired of all the attitudes in our society."

Do you have a faith?

"We must believe in a higher power. There is a big difference in faith and knowledge. I like people who believe. Faith is just about doubt.

What do you prefer film or theater?

"Movies are sad to do, but fun to watch. With the theater, it is the other way around. There is a harmony in standing on the theater stage which is unbeatable. An original ecstasy."

Is there something that scares you?

"Man's ingenuity when it comes to wounding and being stupid against others. No, I'm now pessimistic. What is amazing with man is that we all know that love is strongest. It's something outstanding."

What is the most important ingredient in a long and loving relationship?

"Crisis, scream and shout clearly at each other BEFORE you lie down. You should not go to sleep on a lot of uneasiness."

What are you most proud of?

"I'm proud that I followed a certain path. I dared to write books, that I dared to testify to people about what it's like to be human, that we all bear the same doubts. Personally, I am most proud of my family and that I actually dared meet my biological parents."

How would you describe your lifestyle?

"I think I'm very spoiled. I carry a lot of gold cards... I do not live as I wish because I think it's so hard when everyone looks at me.  But there are positive things about being a public person. The biggest advantage in my life right now is that I give myself breaks and can control my life as I want. It has meant a lot of hard working hours, but it's a luxury to be able to take vacation whenever I want to."

Michael thinks that, despite this, he works more than ever. Offers come in from all directions and besides here in Sweden, he has agents in France and the United States who help him choose roles and inform him when he needs to calm down and to what movies he should say no to.

Future Dreams?

"To continue like this, to work and do films and theater. And I have a lot of ideas for new books. For example, I'm curious about the subject of lies...  I was in a slalom competition when I was 10 years old. An absolutely awesome competition that I won. But at some point I felt that I was on the national team and competed at a high level and over the years it snowballed and the lie became bigger. The one who found me out was Pernilla August. She was good at skiing and realized that I was bluffing. This is a subject that is interesting, I think we all carry on little lies."

Michael continues to talk about different possible future topics to put his claws into.

He now stars in five major Hollywood productions that are soon on the market. One of them is a modern version of Chekhov's "The Seagull".

"I am joining Katie Holmes. I met Katie during the filming of Mission Impossible 4 with Tom Cruise when they were still a couple. I still have great contact with both of them. Katie is really a nice person with both feet on the ground. She's a little funny. I especially remember a scene where we sat on a pier and she sat with a big beer bottle at her mouth. She plays my daughter and hates me. We noticed that on the other side the lake were a lot of paparazzi in the bushes and she took the bottle and grimaced. The next day, it was over the media that she had alcohol problems."