In a Better World (Hämnden), a Swedish-Danish co-production directed by Danish director Susanne Bier, beat out Mexican-Spanish co-production Biutiful starring Javier Bardem, Greek submission Dogtooth, Incendies from Canda and Algerian production Outside the Law (Hors-la-loi).
It was the second time the Persbrandt vehicle, in which he plays a doctor who transitions between an idyllic home in Denmark and an African refugee camp, beat out Biutiful for a major film award.
In January, In a Better World won the in 2011 Golden Globe award in the foreign language film category.
“This means a lot for me, and it’s the biggest thing I’ve experienced in my career,” Bier told the Danish news agency Ritzau after accepting her Oscar statuette.
In other closely watched categories at the 83rd Academy Awards, The King’s Speech won for Best Picture Best Director, and Best Original Screenplay. The film’s star, Colin Firth, also won in the Best Actor category.
Natalie Portman won Best Actress for her role in Black Swan.
Inception won four trophies in primarily technical categories, while The Social Network, a story about the founding of social networking site Facebook, won three Oscars, including Best Adapted Screenplay.
Persbrandt’s next major Hollywood project will be playing the role of Beorn in The Hobbit Parts 1 and 2, the prequels to the Lord of the Rings.
He is currently filming a new installment of the Hamilton films which portray a Swedish intelligence officer and are based on a fictional character developed by Swedish author Jan Guillou.
In a Better World was released in Sweden on October 1st and recently premiered in the US at the Sundance Film Festival.
The film also won the Marc Aurelio Audience Award for Best Film at the 2010 Rome International Film Festival.