True blood stars dating real life
But after just six months he flew home to Stockholm. She broke up with me because it wasn't working out, and I was heart-broken. I spent six months creating her in my mind.' Skarsgård stayed in Sweden and began to pick up acting jobs there.
Skarsgård says its appeal is that 'you can sit back and enjoy it, but it's also really intelligent.
I would have tried, and I would have done it for a few more years probably, but I'm absolutely sure I wouldn't be acting today.
I would have crashed and burned after a while.' He briefly considered becoming an architect – 'I spent a lot of time drawing buildings, even entire towns' – but changed his mind.
I can't really get too close to someone who's too destructive, or too dark, because then I might go down the rabbit hole myself.' It wasn't long, though, before he decided to try his luck down perhaps the biggest rabbit hole of them all, and flew out to Hollywood in 2004. 'There are a lot of great young filmmakers coming up now but 10 years ago it was very different. I didn't leave Sweden for that.' The breakthrough finally came three years ago when he landed the role of Brad Colbert (known as the 'Iceman' because of his ability to stay cool under fire), in the adaptation of Generation Kill, the journalist Evan Wright's book about his experiences as an embedded reporter during the 2003 invasion of Iraq.
I was fortunate enough to be working, but when I was 28 or 29 and the offers were still "college guy, misunderstood, wants the girl", I just needed something different.' He had had a small role in the 2001 Ben Stiller comedy Zoolander, for which he auditioned while visiting his father, who was filming in New York, but he says reality hit when he arrived in LA. After four auditions, in New York, London and Baltimore, he learnt he had got the part just 36 hours before he had to fly out to Namibia to begin seven months of filming.