×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Gudjonsson: From football to ‘Flags’

Berlin Film Festival: Shooting Stars 2012

A former football player, Hilmar Gudjonsson first appeared on-camera in a small role in Clint Eastwood’s “Flags of Our Fathers.” An enviable debut, but the 27-year-old shrugs it off, saying, “Well, originally I was just an extra, but I ended up getting one scene to do, in pretty odd circumstances. So I got to meet Clint, and to act opposite Ryan Philippe. It was pretty cool — though afterwards,” he laughs, “I felt like I’d had a heart attack!”

And those odd circumstances? “Well, there were about 600 extras in all, and many of them had been complaining that they weren’t being treated very well, so lots quit. After two weeks there were only about 150 left. And in fact, after another week I actually thought of quitting as well. But that same day they called me in and asked me to read. And suddenly I’m in the movie.”

After graduating from theater school in 2010, Gudjonsson was hired by the Reykjavik City Theater, and has since appeared in four productions. He took his first cinematic lead in Hafsteinn Gunnar Sigurdsson’s dramedy “Either Way,” which recently earned kudos at the Turin fest, and can soon be seen in Oskar Thor Axelsson pic “Black’s Game.” Asked whose career he would most like to emulate, he responds with a thoughtful, surprising choice: “I’m really fond of Kate Winslet, to be honest. She’s kind of my favorite — not just because she’s intelligent, but because she seems to give everything she’s got, in every role she does. And that’s fascinating and inspiring to watch.”

Return to the Berlin Preview >>

Popular on Variety

More Film

  • Born to Be Live: 'Easy Rider'

    Born to Be Live: 'Easy Rider' Gets a Concert/Screening Premiere at Radio City

    In a year full of major 50th anniversary commemorations — from Woodstock to the moon landing — why not one for “Easy Rider,” Dennis Hopper’s hippie-biker flick that was released on July 14, 1969? That was the idea when a rep for Peter Fonda, who starred in the film as the laid-back Captain America, reached out [...]

  • Costa Gavras

    Costa-Gavras and Cast on Nationality, Identity, and Cinema

    SAN SEBASTIAN  —  Though he’s been based in Paris since 1955 and came up through the French film industry, director Costa-Gavras has never forgotten his roots. “Those who are born Greek,” said the Peloponnese-born filmmaker at a Saturday press conference,  “stay Greek all their lives.” The once-and-always Greek was not just in San Sebastian to [...]

  • Lorene Scafaria, Jennifer Lopez. Lorene Scafaria,

    'Hustlers' Director Lorene Scafaria: 'We Wanted to Treat It Like a Sports Movie'

    The star-studded cast of “Hustlers” didn’t just become strippers in the empowering female-helmed blockbuster — they also became athletes. When speaking to “The Big Ticket,” Variety and iHeart’s movie podcast, at the Toronto Film Festival earlier this month, “Hustlers” director Lorene Scafaria explained the extreme athleticism required of the movie’s leading actresses, who all had [...]

  • Jonathan Van NessLos Angeles Beautycon, Portrait

    Jonathan Van Ness Reveals HIV Diagnosis, Former Drug Addiction

    “Queer Eye’s” Jonathan Van Ness is getting vulnerable in his new memoir “Over the Top.” In a preview of his book with the New York Times, Van Ness opened up about his early struggles with sex and drug addiction as well as his experience with sexual assault, revealing that he was abused by an older [...]

  • 4127_D022_00003_RC(l-r.) Elizabeth McGovern stars as Lady

    Box Office: 'Downton Abbey' Dominating 'Ad Astra,' 'Rambo' With $31 Million Opening

    “Downton Abbey” is heading for a positively brilliant opening weekend after scoring $13.8 million in domestic ticket sales on Friday. If estimates hold, the feature film version of the popular British television show should take home approximately $31 million come Sunday, marking the biggest opening ever for distributor Focus Features and beating previous record holder [...]

  • Gully Boy to represent India in

    'Gully Boy' to Represent India In Oscars Race

    The Film Federation of India has chosen Zoya Akhtar’s “Gully Boy” as its entry in the Academy Awards’ international feature film category. The picture, a coming of age tale about an aspiring rapper in Mumbai’s Dharavi slum premiered at the Berlin film festival in February before opening to a wave of acclaim at home in [...]

  • Lucy-Lost

    Cartoon Forum: 30th Anniversary, Little Giants and New Generations

    TOULOUSE, France –  Celebrating its 30th anniversary, Cartoon Forum wrapped Sept. 19 having showcased the ever-growing strength of European animation. 85 projects were pitched from 24 countries at the co-production forum platform that played host to north of 1,000 investors, distributors and producers – a record number. Falling on French-speaking Belgium – Wallonie-Bruxelles – whose [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content