The M Interview: Vikander on the rise
Swedish actress Alicia Vikander continues to net the big roles
One of the fastest rising stars in Hollywood, 27-year-old Swedish actress Alicia Vikander made her English-language debut in A Royal Affair a scant four years ago.
Yet she already has a Best Supporting Actress Oscar for The Danish Girl earlier this year and has been cast as the new Lara Croft in the soon-to-be-made Tomb Raider film adaptation.
She has also netted herself a celebrity boyfriend, German-Irish actor Michael Fassbender, with whom she appears in her next movie The Light Between Oceans.
For now, the diminutive brunette's leading man is Matt Damon and we meet at The Cosmopolitan hotel in Las Vegas for Jason Bourne.
In this sequel, Vikander is a new addition as Heather Lee, a prodigy hacker with the CIA whose talents lie in predicting and analysing conflicts in the world so they can be manipulated or controlled.
BIG STAR: Alicia Vikander (left) and with Matt Damon (right) in the latest take of Jason Bourne. PHOTO: UIP
She discovers Bourne, who gets back on the grid after a long absence, and collaborates with her CIA mentor (Tommy Lee Jones) to bring him back into the fold. But her intentions are suspect when she makes unexpected choices and keeps the audience guessing about her real motivations.
Were you disappointed that you weren't required to shoot guns and kick ass in Jason Bourne?
I only got to stretch my fingers a lot in this film, which is all the computer hacking I had to do (laughs).
I danced for many years. To do something that physical would be fun. But I also thought it was interesting because in one way, she doesn't do one-on-one combats but she leads a lot of the action happening.
And that also shows how nowadays, we can sit and rule behind a computer instead of actual personal interaction or a fight and that can be as helpful or dangerous or lethal.
Did you have to do any research for the role?
I got the chance to meet people who have similar abilities as Heather Lee. One guy in London taught me it's not called A.I., it's called Computer Learning at Google. Everyone at these offices are under 30 and they have several PhDs and started several companies when they were 15, and I am the same age.
I had to try and pretend to be that brilliant, which I am definitely not when it comes to technology. It was a gift to get the chance to meet people who try to explain a lot of things that I don't understand much of.
How has your life changed since the Oscars back in February?
It still feels pretty surreal and it's the first time I am doing press again since all that. It was a memory for life, but the reality was that two days after that, I went back to the Bourne set in London. And since then, straight on. I had already decided to do a film with (German film-maker) Wim Wenders. And the project after that, before Tomb Raider, is one I have had in development for two years.
So I haven't felt a big change. It's been a lot just back on set. Sadly, I was home in Sweden for just two days, but I have been able to bring my family out and see them a bit more on my sets, which is great. I have five siblings, boys and girls, and I am in the middle.