How old is atli oskar fjalarsson
European Shooting Stars 2016: 12 questions for Atli Oskar Fjalarsson
When I meet Atli Oskar Fjalarsson, the Icelandic European Shooting Star of this year's Berlinale at Potsdamer Platz, I don't know very much about him at first. That should change soon, both for me and for a wider audience, because the likeable actor has already made his way to Hollywood.
At the age of 12, Atli Oskar lends his voice to comic characters, laying the groundwork for his subsequent career. Two years later he starred in Rúnar Rúnarsson's award-winning film 2 birds. Other roles in films, short films and television shows followed. Most recently he worked again with the Icelandic director and screenwriter Rúnarsson, for Sparrows, a movie that lasted Toronto Film Festival and in which Atli plays a frightened youth. For him, the 2016 Berlinale is a premiere in the German capital.
Cafébabel: Is it your first time at the Berlinale this year?
Atli: Yes, it is. My first time in Berlin at all. I have been to Germany twice before, but now for the first time in Berlin. I am definitely fascinated by the city and its intense history.
Cafébabel: In addition to your Berlinale appointments, have you had some time to explore the city?
Atli: Unfortunately, I've had only fleeting impressions so far, from the moving car, as I've been driven to about 15 different locations. I definitely want to come back and really get to know the city. Jella, the German shooting star, has already offered me to come and see her and show me the city.
Cafébabel: And apart from the city, how do you like the Berlinale so far?
Atli: Great so far. It's a huge festival, one of the largest in Europe. So it's really cool to come here and meet a lot of people and see all these beautiful lights and the red carpet.
Cafébabel: How does it feel to be a Shooting Star at this year's Berlinale?
Atli: It's always a great honor to be recognized and it's always nice when someone pats you on the back and says, 'Well done!' I think everyone strives for this recognition.
Cafébabel: Can you briefly introduce yourself and your career so far?
Atli:When I was 12 I did my first dubbing, then when I was 13 I made my first short film 2 birds turned. The film was shown at international festivals and got my career off the ground. When I was 16, I had my first character role and since then I've worked quite continuously in Iceland. I recently moved to Los Angeles to study acting.
Cafébabel: What school are you at, why did you choose to do so?
Atil:I decided to do a three-year bachelor's program at the New York Film Academy. I always wanted to learn how to really act. I have a natural feel for acting, but I always wanted to learn what's behind it, find out more about the founding fathers of acting and how they found their rituals. How to prepare, how to take apart a script. I want to learn all of this properly. I've been in Los Angeles for a year and a half now.
Cafébabel: So you want to conquer Hollywood, is that a goal?
Atil: The USA have always fascinated me. I applied in both New York and Los Angeles, and when I was accepted in LA, I went there. I certainly don't regret it, it's a great city. I really enjoy being there, it's always sunny. It is wonderful.
Cafébabel: How would you describe the difference between Iceland and Los Angeles or Europe and the USA? In terms of acting and working?
Atil:I think the work is very similar. The methods are similar. Acting and film speak a universal language. You go to the set and it doesn't matter if it's for a small art house film in Iceland or a big budget Hollywood movie. The methods and the way the film is shot are the same. In essence it is the same, even if one uses different names and speaks in other languages. I love working in Iceland very much, you get very close to everyone there and you grow into a family.
Cafébabel: Do you have a personal favorite actor?
Atli: I've loved Tom Hanks since I was little. I love everything he does: Forrest Gump Naturally. Cloud Atlas is my absolute favorite film. There are of course Icelandic actors that I really like. Ingvar Eggert Sigurosson, who my father in Sparrows has played. As a little boy I often saw him in films and being able to act with him in my last film was a dream come true. That was definitely one of the highlights of my career so far.
Cafébabel: What other Icelandic filmmakers or actors should you get to know?
Atil: Grímur Hákonarson is a great director and a friend of mine too. I would also name Rúnar Rúnarsson. There are many good Icelandic filmmakers, including many young talents.
Cafébabel: Your idea of bad luck?
Atil: For me, unhappiness manifests itself in loneliness. Loneliness can take so many forms. You can be in a crowd and still feel lonely and that's bad luck for me. I also think we need to start dealing with depression differently. Especially when it comes to men and young men when they feel lost. Most of the time, they cannot express their feelings. When men cry, it seems unmanly and inappropriate. This often leads to isolation.
Cafébabel: Your idea of happiness?
Atil:In the moments when I'm happiest, I don't think about being happy. I think happiness or happiness is an oxymoron. I feel like we only think about it when we don't have it and we don't enjoy it. These are the moments when we see each other for happiness. When you are really happy you don't consciously notice or think about it, you just move through life without stopping and brooding.
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