Mads Mikkelsen doesn’t need to audition anymore. He has three seasons of Hannibal under his belt, and was the all-important sacrificing father Galen Erso in Rogue One, along with the lead bad guy with the interdimensional bags under his eyes in Doctor Strange. He’s now a bonafide big-budget star and Metal Gear creator Hideo Kojima is a fan. But, there was a time when Mads Mikkelsen was a Frustrateds Mikkelsen, pretending to stretch his arms out in front of him like a low-budget Mr. Fantastic in an audition gone wrong.
According to Mikkelsen, his audition for the for 2015’s Golden Raspberry award winning Fantastic Four played out so poorly, he went full George Costanza and pulled the, “it’s not you, it’s me” line and bolted for the door. He relayed his sad tale to Shortlist:
You’ve spoken about auditioning for Fantastic Four and finding it an excruciating process. Can you remember any other particularly bad auditions?
I’ve had tons of them. We’ve all been there. We all show up and it’s a little office room with a desk and some books and they want you to do a scene where you have two lines – maybe not even two lines – maybe just “Bleurgh!” or “Get back!” And you’re hiding behind a palm tree that’s not there. It’s like, “Guys, couldn’t you have picked a different kind of scene to this? This is fucking mad.” You feel like an idiot.
Have you actually walked out of any?
I think I walked out on the Fantastic Four one. I think I actually said, “I can’t do it. It’s not about you, I’m sorry, this is wrong.”
The “it’s not about you, I’m sorry, this is wrong” excuse to leave an audition is probably only slightly more cutting than saying, “I’ve barely read the script and I can tell you it lacks soul and you’re probably going to have the lowest Rotten Tomato ratings of any Marvel movie in the history of Marvel movies, this sucks and you suck.”
It’s the politeness of it all that really hurts, you know?