Alicia Vikander Is the Swede Hereafter

With six new movies this year alone, including this month’s Ex Machina, Alicia Vikander is Hollywood’s hardest-working ingénue. 

Those laying eyes on Alicia Vikander for the very first time are advised to savor the moment. Drink it in. Because before you know it, the girl will be everywhere. The ravishing 26-year-old actress with the dark, smoldering gaze and estimable bone structure is largely unknown outside her native Sweden, except to devotees of high-toned costume drama who took note of her winning performances in Anna Karenina and A Royal Affair. But 2015 will herald her transformation into a star, with a veritable Vikander film festival. She began the year as a bewitching femme fatale opposite Ewan McGregor in the Down Under heist thriller Son of a Gun and turned up a month later with Julianne Moore, Jeff Bridges, and a mess of dragons in the swords and sorcery epicSeventh Son. “Alicia is so lovely,” Moore enthuses. “It’s no surprise she was trained as a dancer before she became an actor; she moves with such grace and assurance.”

This month, Vikander portrays a robot – a very attractively designed robot – in Alex Garland’s AI thriller Ex Machina. August will bring The Man from U.N.C.L.E., based on the beloved ’60s TV series, with Vikander as a stylish superspy, followed by The Light Between Oceans, a windswept weepie with Michael Fassbender, about a married couple on an isolated island. Then comes Tulip Fever, a romance set amid the flower-market frenzy of 17th-century Holland, with Christoph Waltz and Dame Judi Dench, and – deep breath – last but not least, a still-untitled film directed by The West Wing’s John Wells about the creation of a high-end restaurant, costarring Bradley Cooper.

There will be more films to follow, of course, and magazine covers, red-carpet promenades and

paparazzi scrums, chat shows, and luxury ad campaigns. But for now, she’s fresh – the gorgeous and prodigiously talented newcomer from Sweden. The one you’ve never heard of. 

Photos by Dima Hohlov