Viggo Mortensen Feels Connected to A History of Violence: Ive been in probably 40 movies maybe, I think, small parts, big parts, and in terms of the process of preparing it, making it, communicating with the director and how the storytelling works on screen its probably the one that I feel the best about. The most satisfied with. I think its with no disrespect to other directors, Ive worked with a lot of talented ones but this was the best experience I had in terms of telling a story easily.
The last two jobs I had Ive been lucky him and a Spanish director I just worked with very similar. Very secure as people, not just technically but as men. And so theyre not threatened by real collaboration with people. Theyre not the kind of people who say, No, I dont do it that way, or, I collaborate. And then you get to the set and the pressures on and theyre kind of like, No, just shut up and just do it. Very open because they know theyre in charge. Its their story and they can only benefit from using you however they want, what people have to give.
Viggo Mortensen on His Approach to the Sex Scenes in A History of Violence: Mortensen confirmed they did not use body doubles in any of the scenes. Its your job, youve gotta do it. Its in the script. As far as the doing of it and how do you get through the day or the days, you know, it can be a very difficult or it can be sort of difficult. Its gonna be awkward on some level, and it should be for the audience to feel something.
David, as I said, hes very good at communicating and hes helpful and he also creates a safe and sort of humorous atmosphere on set, so you dont take yourself too seriously for one thing. You feel supported in a nice way. And then if your partner is someone like Maria Bello who is obviously a good actress, obviously talented and good looking and all of that and is also courageous you know, she is brave. She didnt play it safe and she was willing to go there together and try these things that were difficult emotionally, more than anything. That makes my job a lot easier. It was a weird day, and a difficult day on some levels, but it was exhilarating.
Viggo Mortensen on Which is Harder to Tackle Sex or Violence: I dont think I can separate them. I think there is sex in violence and there is violence in sex. On some level you could say, I suppose, and this, again, in Cronenbergs hands you get that. You get that violence isnt just one thing. Its not just overt physical aggression. Its also in how you treat people: your wife, your son, strangers on the street. Do you really listen to them or not? Do you respect them or not? Do you feel that they respect and listen to you? Do you feel dismissed? What do you feel? How do you get along? Theres always some jockeying for position in any relationship one on one or family or community. Community of nations, people have feelings and theyre complicated. I mean, just life itself. Being born is a violent happening. Maturing, growing up, adolescence, relationships, disappointments, aging, dying, suffering, seeing others die. Life is difficult and complicated, I think Cronenberg seems to say. Its also pretty damn funny sometimes. And as weird as it is, its worthwhile. Its worth going through all that, I suppose.
I think that the times when you see a movie like this, its one of those rare movies where you do come out of it having gone through the ringer a little bit. Its kind of a roller coaster emotionally and you come out really thinking about things. Not just the story, I mean, you sort of for a moment or a while youre probably going to think about yourself and your relationships and your place in society and your family whatever in a different way. Or at least youre going to think more profoundly for a little bit. Its the rare movie that does that these days and also entertains you.
Viggo Mortensen on Spending Time to Prepare for This Role: I spent a decent amount. I guess a couple of months three months. But luckily I was able to speak with [Cronenberg] as much as I wanted and we talked. Hes in Toronto and I was in California or other places I wasnt there but we spoke constantly on the phone and prepared things and wrote to each other. We really got to a place where, by the time we started shooting, we had a real shorthand. We could do it almost without talking about it sometimes.