Mads Mikkelsen made quite an impact with horror fans with his portrayal of the famous Thomas Harris madman, Hannibal Lecter, but since the NBC series was cancelled last year, Mikkelsen has been relatively absent from the film and television scene. That all changes with the upcoming films Rogue One: A Star Wars Story and Marvel’s Doctor Strange. While producers on either films would prefer to keep Mads’ participation as enigmatic as possible at this point, the actor seems too excited to keep a tight lid on what his involvement is in the films.
Rogue One Actor Mads Mikkelsen Leaks A Star Wars Spoiler, But Is It A Big Deal?
Recently, Walt Disney Studios and Lucasfilm released the first trailer for Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, and while that first look was an excitable glance at what can be expected in this unique Star Wars offshoot, there wasn’t much in the way of plot detail. The Rogue One trailer gives us the basics: Jyn Erso (Felicity Jones) embarks on a mission for the Rebel Alliance to steal the plans for the first Death Star. Beyond that, little else is known, and it seems there may be some twists that the filmmakers are trying to keep under wraps for this Star Wars tale.
That is, until Mads Mikkelsen joined the cast. The Hannibal actor revealed more than he should have in a recent interview when Mads spoke about his Rogue One character. To make matters worse, once Mikkelsen realized that he had let a key plot point slip, he said as much instead of moving on and letting the error slip into obscurity.
Mikkelsen was initially approached by Star Wars director Gareth Edwards to star in the Rogue One film, but Mads says he wasn’t told exactly what role the director was intending to offer.
“A little scared,” Mads says, when asked how he felt going into the project with such an uncertain set of circumstances. “I wasn’t really sure if I was wearing a Stormtrooper outfit or anything like that at that point. I wasn’t sure I could fit into that.”
Eventually, Edwards did tell Mikkelsen which character he would be playing, and that may have been the director’s own mistake, because Mikkelsen spilled it in his first interview.
“I read the script. It was very beautiful. And Felicity [Jones] is playing this lovely, strong woman, and I play her father,” says Mads. “And that was too much. I’m sorry.”
It seems clear by the way Mikkelsen reacts, after realizing his slip, that his character is much more than merely the father of Jyn Erso. Rumors suggest he is also the creator/ architect of the Death Star and that, after the fact, he realizes that he made a grave error in designing something so potentially catastrophic. If these rumors are true, Mikkelsen may play a larger role than would be implied by the spoiler that he is Jyn’s father.
Doctor Strange Recruits Mads Mikkelsen To Challenge The Hero
Unlike his Rogue One character, Mads hasn’t said much of anything about his Doctor Strange character, and Marvel is keeping this one Doctor Strange detail top secret, even though every other character has been revealed either through the trailer or in interviews. It is known that Mikkelsen will be playing a Doctor Strange villain, which seems to be a role for which he’s best suited. Even his Rogue One character seems to have questionable morals, if the rumors are to be believed. In Doctor Strange, however, there’s nothing questionable or enigmatic about the nature of evil within Mads’ character, and only the exact identity of the villain is stirring supposition and intrigue.
There are many compelling Marvel villains who might appear in the first Doctor Strange film, but Marvel fans have narrowed it down to a relatively short list. Mikkelsen may play any of them, including Mephisto, Xandu, or even Dracula, but topping the list of Doctor Strange‘s potential villains are Nightmare and Dormammu.
Relying directly on the comic books, Dormammu is Doctor Strange’s greatest foe, comparable to Superman’s Lex Luthor and Batman’s Joker. Dormammu exists in another dimension, and as the character isn’t able to take human form, he can only cross into our dimension by using a human host, which may be how Mikkelsen’s character is drawn into becoming the villain.
Finally, Nightmare also hails from an otherworldly reality, where he reigns over the Dream Dimension as a kind of an old god. As might be suspected, Nightmare preys on humankind through their dreams, capturing them and returning them to his own realm. Once there, Nightmare tortures his victims, feeding on the energy produced by their suffering. If Marvel goes with this villain, it seems Mads Mikkelsen may be asked to portray yet another incarnation of Freddy Krueger.
Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, starring Felicity Jones, Mads Mikkelsen, and Ben Mendelsohn, is scheduled for a December release.
Doctor Strange, starring Benedict Cumberbatch, Tilda Swinton, and Mads Mikkelsen, will premiere in theaters on November 4.
[Image by Clemens Bilan/Getty Images for GQ]