How Mads has become the master of the monocular

Musketeers appearance takes One-Eyed Mads’ tally of recent cyclopean movie roles to four

He’s known in Denmark as the country’s sexiest man, a synonym for the Danish film industry, and a knighted member of the Danish arts community. But he’s known abroad as ‘One-eyed Mads’.

Poor Mads Mikkelsen. As a foreigner trying to stamp his mark in the tough world of Hollywood surely there must be an easier way to do it than sporting either a disfigured eye or an eye patch in every role?

Now starring as the villain Rochefort in ‘The Three Musketeers’, this brings Mikkelsen’s tally of one-eyed roles up to four, following cyclopean credits in ‘Casino Royale’, ‘Valhalla Rising’ and ‘Clash of the Titans’. Maybe this is why Musketeers director Paul WS Anderson had some reservations about requesting Mikkelsen to patch up again.

“I was asking myself: does he want to be known as the actor with the messed-up eye?” Anderson told the Toronto Sun.

In fact Anderson was so scared to ask him that he just hung the eye patch on a mirror in Mikkelsen’s dressing room. An hour later Mikkelsen emerged, telling Anderson: “Paul, I’ll try it. But I’m probably not going to like it.”

At least this time the patch has an element of class to it. In ‘Casino Royale’ Mikkelsen endured a glazed-over eye with a scar running through it. Then when playing a Norse warrior named One-Eye in ‘Valhalla Rising’, it’s not surprising his character featured a hideously gruesome excuse of an eye (or lack of). And given the opportunity to play a Greek warrior in ‘Clash of the Titans’, you’d think Mikkelsen would finally live up to his sexiest man title. Not so, as the director decided he should don yet another disfigured eye.

Mikkelsen once remarked: “I’d rather be voted the sexiest man in Denmark than the ugliest man in Denmark,” so it appears he takes his good looks with a grain of salt.

However, his ‘down-eysing’ isn’t just restricted to the big screen. Danish viewers will remember the TV crime series ‘Rejseholdet’ (Unit One) in which Mikkelsen starred as ‘Allan Fisher’. Needless to say his eye was damaged in the series finale.

And Mikkelsen will soon be at it again – taking on another fiendish role in ‘The Nazi Officer’s Wife’ as Werner Vetter. He’ll be suave, broody, unpredictable, dark and … you guessed it, one eyed.