An enormous thank you to the anonymous person who translated THIS amazing interview with Hanne for all of us!
Interviewer: A lot has happened since they met each other for the first time on the dance floor 25 years ago. Actor Mads Mikkelsen has become a star; he recently won the Golden Palm in Cannes. He has changed his hair and costume a lot of times for all the different roles he has played, but he wife Hanne with whom he has 2 children with has fortunately never been changed (replaced). Welcome Hanne Jacobsen.
Hanne: Thanks a lot.
I: You were with Mads in Cannes when Vinterberg (the director) showed the movie “Jagten” (the hunt) but you weren’t there when it was announced a couple of days ago that he won the Golden Palm. Where were you then?
H: I was at home, in the kitchen, looking at the screen with everyone else and was dying with anxiety. I didn’t think he’d get it so that’s why I didn’t come. I thought: Oh, there’s the travel and then there’s the kids and Viola has her exams right now, so I decided: No, I’ll stay home. But when I hear Mads’ name getting called out and I see how scared he is all I’m thinking is: Nooo, this is not good, I should have been there, I should have been there.
I: Well, it was amazing that he won. If we turn back time 25 years… I said earlier that you met each other on the dance floor, but how did you really meet; how did it all happen?
H: Well, in 1987 we were both dancers. I had been dancing for many years at that point. I meet Mads at an audition for (name of theatre play) at Aarhus Theatre. And we both – we’re both in a relationship so things were complicated – but we both fall deeply in love with each other and I just looked at him and thought: That right there; that’s the man in my life.
I: And it has lasted ever since…
H: Yes. :)
I: … for 25 years. If we look back we can easily say that a lot has happened with Mads’ career and as his wife you have witnessed a lot of different types of “Mads Mikkelsens”. Let’s take a lot at these clips of some of his different roles because I thought I’d be funny to see what the wife will say about this. First, we have this clip from “De grønne slagtere” (The green butchers – clip starts a 1.27). You probably remember this one. How did you feel when your husband came home like this while they were shooting the movie?
H: I remember particularly with that one that he called from the car before he got home, saying: “Hanne, they gave me a new haircut on set today – I look a bit funny.” “Oh well,” I thought. Then I saw him in the entrance hall and I said: “You go and put a hat on right now, Mads.” (laughs) And he slept with the hat on too, because I didn’t want to wake up with that head next to me.
I: So you let him sleep with a hat on. How long was the shoot?
H: 6 weeks.
I: Way to go. If we take a look at the very famous “Pusher” 1, the first movie. (Clip starts at 2.37.) There weren’t so many people that knew who Mads Mikkelsen was at that time. We see him here –
H: Yes, good looking guy. (sarcasm) At that time we lived on Strandvejen (street name) in Hellerup (city name) and he would walk with our pretty little daughter to the kindergarten every day and everyone was giving him very weird looks. I just did my best to smile and look like: Yeah… he’s actually a good guy.
I: They were just thinking: Who’s that creepy man walking there… The back of his neck also spelled out “RESPECT”. I believe he was also stopped by the police a couple of times?
H: He was stopped by the police every two days. They wanted to see his ID because they thought he was some sort of criminal from downtown.
I: Oh that’s not good. If only they had known who they were stopping. We also have a clip from “Clash of the titans.” (3.14) I actually remember that he was also at Cannes at the time – not with that movie – but I remember thinking: Why on earth is he looking like that?
H: I actually kind of like that look – he looks pretty hot there.
I: You also like him in James Bond as Le Chiffre. (3.33)
H: (laughs) Yes.
I: In Bond I remember him as being – maybe that’s just me…
H: Well I think he looks hot there – especially compared to De Grønne Slagtere (the green butchers).
I: (laughs) Yes, you are right, also compared to Pusher. Which Mads do you prefer out of all his different roles?
H: That’s a tough question. But Mads isn’t really all these characters; I meet Mads when he is 20 and I’m 24 and I’m just so proud of him. He’s an incredibly generous person and he’s an amazing actor. I think he’s the world’s greatest actor, I’m not afraid to say that, and I think he’s the world’s greatest dad and he’s the world’s greatest boyfriend. :)
I: But I can’t help but think that it has got to be tough sometimes. He’s not just famous here (in Denmark) anymore, he’s famous everywhere and he is a hot guy and there’s probably a lot of people who’d like to get their hands on him and perhaps aren’t afraid to shout it out either. Isn’t that tough? Don’t you ever get jealous?
H: Nope. I think it’s wonderful. I just straighten my back and think: Yes, that’s the one I got. And I really mean that, it’s not something I’m just saying. It makes me happy and proud. What if people were saying: Boo, why did you end up with that guy? That wouldn’t be fun.
I: Amazing. Then there’s the fact that he’s away a lot. That comes with the job and especially with the success. How do you tackle that?
H: Well Mads is gone a lot in periods. He’ll be gone for 3 months and he’ll be home for 4, so when he’s finally home he’ll really be at home. So I actually believe he’s more at home than other people. Of course, when he’s gone he’s gone, but when he’s home… So I actually think, compared to other fathers who will work from 8 – 4 or 8 – 5, that Mads is more at home and is spending more time with the kids in that way.
I: And fortunately there’s a lot of perks to it all also, because you get to go with him to some of these exciting experiences. I found a picture (5.24) where you’re at the premiere for Casino Royale in Great Britain. And we see here that you are meeting none other than Queen Elizabeth.
I: And you were there, right?
H: Yes, I was there. We had been briefed about how everyone had to put mints in their mouths so nobody had a bad breath when they met the Queen. Your hands had to be washed, you weren’t allowed to say anything to her and everyone had to curtsy or bow. So Mads and I were at the hotel, practicing curtsying and bowing – and if there’s something I’m good at; it’s curtsying (because I’ve been dancing). So I was curtsying so deeply and all I could think was: “Man, I can’t wait to curtsy!” So we get in the room where we’re going to meet her, and then we get briefed once more. They put me right behind Mads and I was told: “Hanne, you may only look at the floor or at Mads’ back” – so I didn’t get to curtsy, I’ll have to save that for another time.
I: How unfair. At least you’ve been a lot closer to her than most other people have.
H: Yes, you’re right.
I: How much do you – well, when Mads comes in at the door how much will you talk about his job? Will he just be Mads or do you talk a lot about what he has been doing?
H: It’s not something we talk a lot about, actually. At home we’re just Hanne and Mads, Carl and Viola. But I am with him when it comes to deciding what he’s going to do next and how it fits in with our family – so not artistically, but with the family, definitely. I sort of approve: Yes, it’s okay you do that one, too.
I: And you chose to step out of your own choreographing career 5 years ago which was something you decided to do. Why did you make that choice?
H: Well… I sort of looked at Mads whose career was going full speed after Rejseholdet (television series) and I just didn’t want to be the angry wife who’d say: “It’s your turn to empty the dishwasher!” when he came home, maybe I should relax a little and do more of that stuff. And it has been amazing – I love being around the house and I don’t feel like I’ve sacrificed my own career in any way. I have done my dancing and been very happy because of that.
I: And you still look very happy –
H: I am very happy. :)
I: I get that, and I also get why Mads Mikkelsen must be happy to have you for his wife.
H: Thank you, you’re so sweet.
I: Thank you for coming.
H: Thank you for having me.