Viggo Mortensen Had Near-Death Experience While Filming Underwater Scenes In Ron Howard's Thirteen Lives:"I Couldn't Breathe"
Thirteen Lives tells the true story of the 2018 Tham Luang cave rescue.
Viggo Mortensen "couldn't breathe" while filming a diving scene in Ron Howard's latest movie Thirteen Lives'.
The Lord of the Rings star, 63, plays British civilian cave diver Rick Stanton in the biographical survival film about the 2018 Tham Luang cave rescue that saw a junior football team and their coach trapped in a cave for a period of 18 days.
For the role, Mortensen worked closely with Stanton (via Zoom) to prep him for the dive in the tough underwater sequences.
It was while filming in one of the makeshift caves on set in Australia that one of Mortensen's oxygen tanks stopped working and he couldn't breathe for a few seconds.
Speaking to People, Mortensen recalled: "All of a sudden I couldn't breathe. It seemed like a long time, but it was only a matter of seconds. I panicked."
Fortunately, he remembered what Stanton had told him to do in that situation.
He said: "It's not that complicated. But at the moment, it's hard to think clearly."
Mortensen is no stranger to having close-calls on movie sets. During the making of 2002's The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers, he nearly being dragged to the bottom of a river.
"I remember thinking, 'This is it. This is the end'," said Mortensen who played Aragon.
He also told the story of his brush with death during a stormy sailing trip from England to his native Denmark in the 1970s.
He said: "We barely survived."
Thirteen Lives launches on Amazon Prime Video on Aug 5. It also stars Colin Farrell and Joel Edgerton as fellow rescuers John Volanthen and Dr Richard Harris, respectively.
— BANG SHOWBIZ
Photo: TPG News/Click Photos