[[quoteright:312:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/viggo-mortensen-good11_1051.jpg]]


'''Viggo Peter Mortensen Jr.''' (October 20, 1958-) is a Danish-American actor ([[RenaissanceMan and poet, painter, musician, and photographer]]) in New York City. He has been acting in movies since 1985, but is probably best known for his role as Aragorn in Creator/PeterJackson's film version of ''[[Film.TheLordOfTheRings The Lord of the Rings]]'' trilogy, a role in which he was cast at the last minute and accepted without having read the books, at the insistence of his son.

Mortensen grew up in Argentina as well as in New York and lived in his father's native Denmark for several years; he speaks Spanish and Danish fluently.
----

!Notable films:
* ''Film/{{Witness}}'' (1985)
* ''Film/{{Prison}}'' (1988)
* ''Film/LeatherfaceTheTexasChainsawMassacreIII'' (1990)
* ''Film/TheIndianRunner'' (1991)
* ''Film/AmericanYakuza'' (1993)
* ''Film/CarlitosWay'' (1993)
* ''Film/ThePortraitOfALady'' (1996)
* ''Film/GIJane'' (1997)
* ''Film/APerfectMurder'' (1998)
* ''Film/{{Psycho|1998}}'' (1998)
* ''Film/TheLordOfTheRings'' trilogy (2000-2003)
* ''Film/{{Hidalgo}}'' (2004)
* ''Film/AHistoryOfViolence'' (2005)
* ''Film/{{Alatriste}}'' (2006)
* ''Film/EasternPromises'' (2007)
* ''Film/{{Good}}'' (2008)
* ''Film/TheRoad'' (2009)
* ''Film/ADangerousMethod'' (2011)
* ''Literature/OnTheRoad'' (2012)
----

!Tropes
* {{Badass}}: Broke his toe, lost a tooth, and nearly drowned while filming ''Lord of the Rings'', did many of his own stunts, was described by legendary swordmaster Bob Anderson as "the best swordsman I've ever trained" (which is saying something in a 50-year career), and kept his sword with him at all times for the duration of the filming. Oh, and slept in the stables in order to bond with his horse. Stabbed himself in the leg while shooting ''Alatriste'', and kept filming, and in ''Fellowship of the Ring'' he deflected a thrown knife with his sword in a ThrowItIn moment. Lurtz was supposed to miss, but the actor's makeup obscured his vision and he wound up throwing it straight at Viggo, which could've seriously injured him.
* BadassLongcoat: Wore one for most of his role as Aragorn.
* BigNo / DeathWail / ThrowItIn: While filming a scene in ''Film/TheLordOfTheRings'', he broke his toe when kicking a helmet. The kick was meant to be followed by a wail out of sorrow/despair, but the one used in the movie is actually Mortensen howling in pain. It was kept because it was the best of the takes.
* BilingualBonus: Speaks Danish and Spanish fluently, he has frequently given interviews in both, as well as done shout-outs during events and in English-language interviews.
** Doubles as a CrowningMomentOfAwesome when he performs for Howard Zinn's ''ThePeopleSpeak'', [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_nxRvt5Rjx8 citing a diary entry by Bartolome de Las Casas on the horrendous treatment of American Indians by Christian settlers.]] In English ''and'' in the diary entry's original Spanish!
** Of all the actors who had lines in the Elven languages (the two used in the film being very complete constructed languages with detailed grammatical rules and thousands of known words) when filming ''Film/TheLordOfTheRings'', Mortensen made the strongest effort to ensure his dialog and pronunciation was correct. If you're trying to learn Quenya or Sindarin and have any doubts how something should sound, queue up the film and check to see if Mortensen says it.
* CloudCuckoolander: According to a lot of his co-stars. ElijahWood said that while filming ''Film/TheLordOfTheRings'', Mortensen called him and left him a five minute rambling voice-mail in a fake German accent. Wood went on to say, "Everyone talks about how much integrity he has and how brilliant he is. And itís true. Heís also completely insane."
** His ex-wife (who he's still friends with) has said that what first endeared him to her was the fact that he keeps most of his poetry in his refrigerator.
** He's also the guy who started the "tradition" of [=LotR=] stuntmen greeting each other with headbutts.
** During the credits for ''Fellowship of the Ring'''s extended edition, in the actor commentaries, the hobbit actors read the names and then give a succinct one-line description.
--->'''Billy Boyd:''' "Viggo Mortensen": mad as a fish.
* DashingHispanic: His role as Captain Alatriste.
* MrFanservice: Even his co-star Miranda Otto admitted it was going to be easy to portray falling in love with his character for her role.
* FakeNationality: Fake German (with a British accent) in ''Good'', Russian in ''EasternPromises'' (with a Russian accent) and fake Spaniard (speaking Spanish) in ''Alatriste''.
* FatalMethodActing: Fortunately averted in ''[[Film.TheLordOfTheRings The Lord Of The Rings]]'', in which he was at one point pulled under while filming the river scene in ''The Two Towers''.
* TheOtherMarty: Mortensen was cast as Aragorn when ''Lord of the Rings'' had already started filming; Stuart Townsend was originally cast in the role but was deemed too young, while Jackson wanted to keep from having to work with Creator/DanielDayLewis at all, if possible.
* RenaissanceMan: Aside from acting, he's a poet, painter, songwriter and photographer. Oh, and he owns a printing press, [[http://www.percevalpress.com Perceval Press]].
* SoMyKidsCanWatch: One of the reasons why he agreed to play Aragorn is because his son is a Tolkien fan.
* StarMakingRole: Aragorn is who he is best remembered for.
* TallDarkAndHandsome: As Aragorn. In real life, he used to have a more medium blond sort of hair color, although it's mostly gray these days.

------