Viggo Mortensen received the Joseph Plateau Honorary Award 2020 in Ghent on Sunday 18 October. With this prize for his full oeuvre, Film Fest Ghent honours his impressive track record as an actor, now director and his eminent contribution to the art of filmmaking. He received the award from the hands of Film Fest Ghent programme director Wim De Witte before the Belgian premiere of his directorial debut Falling.
For his latest project, Viggo Mortensen, born in New York, not only wrote the scenario and took up the director's role, he also played the leading role and delivered the music himself. With Falling, the Danish-American actor/director proves to be a creative multi-talent.
Viggo Mortensen started his career in 1985 with a role in Witness by Australian new wave filmmaker Peter Weir. He blew away critics with one top performance after another, for example in The Indian Runner (Sean Penn), Carlito's Way (Brian De Palma, 1993), Crimson Tide (Tony Scott, 1995), The Portrait of a Lady (Jane Campion, 1996), GI Jane (Ridley Scott, 1997) and A Walk on the Moon (Tony Goldwyn,1999).
Viggo Mortensen's most renowned performance, however, is the one in the Lord of the Rings trilogy in which he heroically interprets Aragorn on his adventure with Frodo. His role in these fantasy spectacles anchored his position in the pantheon of the Hollywood elite.
With terrific performances in Eastern Promises (David Cronenberg, 2007), Captain Fantastic (Matt Ross, 2016) and Green Book (Peter Farrelly, 2018), he was nominated three times for an Academy Award. Viggo Mortensen has proved to be vigorous and uncompromising in every role, but always brings a mysterious sense of introspection. Like no other he knows how to unite brutality and sentiment in one look or movement so that even the greatest criminal radiates a certain sentimentality. Translated to the screen, this results in a perfect actor for many top film-makers.
The annual Joseph Plateau Honorary Awards recognise guests for their eminent contribution to the art of filmmaking.
There are still a few places left for the screening of Falling on Tuesday the 20th of October. Buy your tickets here.