Ola Rapace

Pär Ola Rapace (Swedish: [ˈûːla raˈpasː]; né Norell; born 3 December 1971)[1] is a Swedish actor.

Ola Rapace
Pär Ola Norell

(1971-12-03) 3 December 1971 (age 49)
Tyresö, Sweden
Years active1999–present
(m. 2001; div. 2011)
Sonja Jawo
(m. 2019)

Early lifeEdit

Ola Rapace was born on the 3rd of December 1971 in Tyresö, Stockholm County, Sweden and named Pär Ola Norell. Both parents were academics. He grew up mainly in Vallentuna, a middle-class suburb of Stockholm. When he was one year old, his parents separated, and he was raised by his father. He grew up playing football and listening to heavy metal.[2]

While studying philosophy at the University of Montpellier in France, he discovered acting.[3]


His first screen role was in Lukas Moodysson's film Together, a bittersweet comedy about hippie-socialist values set in a Stockholm homeshare commune. The film won several awards at international film festivals,[1] including the Paris Film Festival Special Jury Prize, and Philadelphia Film Festival Jury Award.[citation needed]

Rapace's big breakthrough came with the popular TV series Tusenbröder about a group of handymen who become involved with organised crime.[4] Immediately followed the role as Stefan Lindman in Wallander, which was based on Henning Mankell's Kurt Wallander books.[5]

He continued with several police and crime-related TV series, including portraying Daniel Nordström in the Danish police TV show Anna Pihl,[1] Crimes of Passion,[6] a crime drama set in 1950's rural Sweden, Farang[7] about a Scandinavian ex-convict living in Thailand and Hassel, an updated dark and gritty cop show based on a classic series of books from the '70s and '80s. This was a cop show he also executive produced,[8] and Section Zéro, a French science fiction influenced cop drama.

While he has worked on many cop shows, Rapace has been very critical of the genre. In 2012 he told Cafe Magazine: "All the Wallander and Beck films are worthless. There is no credibility, it does not work to investigate thousands of murders in Ystad year after year. In the end it becomes a joke, and the quality becomes so low that one has no other option but to shut down the production".[9]

His first English-language film was the 2004 independent movie Rancid starring Matthew Settle (from Band of Brothers and Gossip Girl). A much bigger project was the 2012 James Bond film Skyfall,[10] where he portrayed the hitman "Patrice".

Rapace lived in Paris from 2015-2020 and has since worked on Swedish, French and international projects. In 2016, he starred in the French science fiction film Ares and soon after followed Section Zéro, a French TV-series about a para-military police squad in the near future.

Rapace had a supporting role as Major Gibson in Luc Besson's 2017 French/American big budget comic book/science fiction film Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets.[11]

In 2018 Rapace was one of the main antagonists in series 3 of Netflix/BBC's popular Viking drama The Last Kingdom as "Jarl Sigurd Bloodhair".[12][13]

When Below the Surface (Gidseltagningen), a Danish drama about 15 innocent people held hostage underground in a subway train, returns for a second series in 2019, Rapace will join the cast as "Yusef".[14]

His new film Divertimento, an English language French thriller will be out in 2020. Rapace will star alongside Twilight and FBI: Most Wanted actor, Kellan Lutz.[15][16]

Reality televisionEdit

He will be one of 5 Swedish celebrities featured in 2020 edition of popular TV series Stars at the Castle. The basis of the show is: five famous people live together in a castle or manor house for five days. Each day focuses on one person and their career, as they eat dinners and they discuss their life and career, and the other celebrities ask questions. [17] A few months before the announcement of Rapace joining the 2020 season, he had criticized this specific reality television show. [18]

Personal lifeEdit

Rapace married actress Noomi Rapace in 2001, divorcing in 2011; they have a son, Lev, who was born in 2003.[19][20][21][22] Together they chose the surname Rapace after they were married, which means "bird of prey" in French and Italian.[1] Rapace also has a daughter, Line, born in 1999, together with the actress Malin Morgan. Rapace lived in France for several years and speaks fluent French.[1]

For years Ola and Noomi were preyed upon by Swedish tabloids. Noomi's international career was taking off, and she and Ola, who was never afraid of an argument, were frequently featured in gossip magazines and tabloids.[23] He has had several run-ins with the law, including spending the night in a jail in Austria.[24] In October 2008, he was arrested for possession of cocaine and steroids, which resulted in a fine for a minor drug offence in April 2009.[25][26]

In May 2019 he married Sonja Jawo, in Paris. Sonja Jawo is the older sister of Aino Jawo, of Swedish electropop duo Icona pop.[27][28] After living in France since 2015, he moved back to Stockholm in 2020. [29]



  1. ^ a b c d e "Ola Rapace". General-Anzeiger (in German). Archived from the original on 23 June 2011. Retrieved 8 June 2010.
  2. ^ "Den skapande mannen är en roll". 16 January 2011.
  3. ^ Spektra, T. T. (10 December 2012). "Ola Rapace siktar på Frankrike". kuriren.nu.
  4. ^ "Polisen slog till på riktigt". Aftonbladet.
  5. ^ Häggström, Andreas (20 August 2008). "Rapaces super-kropp" [Rapace' super body]. Aftonbladet (in Swedish). Retrieved 5 April 2010.
  6. ^ "Filmatiserade Langdeckare förför med nostalgi och sexiga undertoner". svenska.yle.fi.
  7. ^ "Sun, surf and sex – Farang is not your typical Scandi thriller". Guide.
  8. ^ "Ola Rapace tvekan för superrollen i "Hassel"". Aftonbladet.
  9. ^ "Ola Rapace: Alla Wallander och Beck är ju värdelösa". Aftonbladet.
  10. ^ "@007: 8 November". Twitter. Twitter Inc. 8 November 2011. Retrieved 8 November 2011.[non-primary source needed]
  11. ^ "Exklusivt: Ola Rapace i Luc Bessons sci-fi". MovieZine.
  12. ^ Debnath, Neela (25 September 2018). "The Last Kingdom season 3 cast: Who is playing Bloodhair? Who is Ola Rapace?". Daily Express.
  13. ^ "Ola Rapace får stor skurkroll i Netflix-serien "The Last Kingdom"". MovieZine.
  14. ^ "Lise starring in the second season of the danish series "Gidseltagningen"". Lise Risom Olsen.
  15. ^ https://www.francenetinfos.com/rencontre-avec-lacteur-suedois-ola-rapace-198448/
  16. ^ https://deadline.com/2019/06/twilight-kellan-lutz-divertimento-movie-1202632941/
  17. ^ https://www.expressen.se/noje/blogg/tvbloggen/2020/06/08/perrelli-rapace-och-billgren-i-arets-stjarnorna-pa-slottet-i-svt/
  18. ^ https://www.expressen.se/noje/ola-rapace-vill-bemota-ryktena-sa-manga-granslosa-personer/
  19. ^ Carlberg, Ingrid (19 January 2010). "Nominerad till DN:s kulturpris 2010: Noomi Rapace" [Nominated for the 2010 DN Culture Prize: Noomi Rapace]. Dagens Nyheter (in Swedish). Retrieved 14 October 2015.
  20. ^ "'Millennium'-stjärnan Noomi Rapace har ansökt om skilsmässa från maken Ola Rapace". Aftonbladet (in Swedish). Retrieved 4 November 2016.
  21. ^ "The Drop's Noomi Rapace: on her rough past and the pressure to be sexy". The Daily Telegraph. 9 November 2014. Retrieved 4 November 2016.
  22. ^ Gritten, David (18 February 2010). "Noomi Rapace interview: the world's most seductive sleuth". The Daily Telegraph. London. Retrieved 4 November 2016.
  23. ^ "Ola Rapace: Därför lämnade Noomi mig". Expressen.
  24. ^ "Ola Rapace: "Bond var en lekstuga för mig" – Nöje – Expressen". Expressen.
  25. ^ Hjertén, Linda (3 April 2009). "Ola Rapace dömd för ringa narkotikabrott" [Ola Rapace convicted of minor drug offences]. Aftonbladet (in Swedish). Retrieved 30 May 2012.
  26. ^ "Nu ska Ola Rapace upp i rätten". nyheter24.se. 26 March 2009.
  27. ^ "Ola Rapace har gift sig i hemlighet i Paris". Expressen.
  28. ^ Dorholt, Ingunn (16 May 2019). "Giftet seg i skjul med "hemmelig" kjæreste". Seher.
  29. ^ "Ola Rapace offrade livet i Paris för kärleken". www.expressen.se (in Swedish). Retrieved 4 January 2021.

External linksEdit