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Swedish actor refutes 'ideal husband' claims

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16:41 CEST+02:00
Swedish Hollywood actor Stellan Skarsgård has taken the unusual step of refuting claims that he is a terrific husband and wonderful father.

Skarsgård, 55, responded to a glowing portrait of himself in tabloid Aftonbladet by penning an open letter to daily newspaper Dagens Nyheter, in which he speaks openly about his failed marriage.

"A tabloid newspaper has tried in a couple of articles to build me up as some sort of ideal husband and dream father - a nuclear family icon," wrote Skarsgård.

But the actor assured readers that the quotes used in the articles had been culled from old interviews and ripped out of their original context.

Skarsgård did not, as the articles seemed to suggest, wish to project an image of himself as a perfect family father. Far from living a life of marital bliss, he and his wife My had in fact long been living separate lives.

He further added that several people at Aftonbladet were aware of their separation.

"One can then ask the question as to why the newspaper in question has chosen to put me on a pedestal as a sort of superhuman husband and father. And I am struck by the suspicion that their aim is to intensify the effect of the next story: that I am no longer living with my wife," he wrote.

Skarsgård has starred in a number of major movies, including 'Good Will Hunting' and the second and third installments of 'Pirates of the Caribbean', in which he played the role of 'Bootstrap' Bill Turner.

His sons, Alexander and Gustaf, are also well-known actors.

In recent years he has made a point of not speaking to the press about his private life.

"I am writing this to avoid having to 'speak out' in the tabloids, and I will continue to endeavour to retain a private life worthy of the name," he wrote.

He concludes the letter by stating that he and his wife have remained close friends despite the break-up of their marriage.

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