Max von Sydow


Max von Sydow was born Carl Adolf von Sydow on April 10, 1929 in Lund, Skåne, Sweden, to a middle-class family. He is the son of Baroness Maria Margareta (Rappe), a teacher, and Carl Wilhelm von Sydow, an ethnologist and folklore professor. His surname traces back to his father’s partial German ancestry. When he was in high school, he and a few fellow students, including Yvonne Lombard, started a theatre club which encouraged his interest in acting. After conscription, he began to study at the Royal Dramatic Theatre’s acting school (1948-1951), together with Lars Ekborg, Margaretha Krook and Ingrid Thulin. His first role was as Nils the crofter in Alf Sjöberg’s Rya Rya nur eine Mutter (1949). After graduation, he worked at the city theatres in Norrköping and Malmö. His work in the movies by Ingmar Bergman (especially Das siebente Siegel (1957), that includes the iconic scenes in which he plays chess with Death) made him well-known internationally, and he started to get offers from abroad. His career abroad began with him playing Jesus in Die größte Geschichte aller Zeiten (1965); Hawaii (1966) and Das Quiller Memorandum – Gefahr aus dem Dunkel (1966). Since then, his career includes very different kind of characters, like Karl Oskar Nilsson in Emigranten (1971); Father Lankester Merrin in Der Exorzist (1973); Joubert the assassin in Die drei Tage des Condor (1975), Emperor Ming in Flash Gordon (1980); the villain Ernst Stavro Blofeld in the James Bond 007 – Sag niemals nie (1983); Liet-Kynes in Dune – Der Wüstenplanet (1984) the artist Frederick in Hannah und ihre Schwestern (1986); Lassefar in Pelle, der Eroberer (1987), for which he received his first Academy Award nomination; Dr. Peter Ingham in Zeit des Erwachens (1990); Lamar Burgess in Minority Report (2002) and The Renter in Extrem laut & unglaublich nah (2011), which earned him his second Academy Award nomination. He has become one of Sweden’s most admired and professional actors and is the only male Swedish actor to receive an Oscar nomination. Max has been nominated twice: for Pelle, der Eroberer (1987) in 1988 and for Extrem laut & unglaublich nah (2011) in 2012. He received the Guldbagge Award for Best Director in his directing debut, the drama film Ved vejen (1988). In 2016, he joined the sixth season of the HBO series Game of Thrones: Das Lied von Eis und Feuer (2011) as the Three-eyed Raven, which earned him his Primetime Emmy Award nomination.


Movie Name Release Date
Star Wars: Episode VII – Das Erwachen der Macht 17. December 2015