'John Wick' and 'Mission Impossible 4' Star Michael Nyqvist Dead at 56

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(Photo: Getty / Joerg Koch / Stringer)

Swedish actor Michael Nyqvist - who is best known in America for playing the villain Viggo Tarasov in John Wick - has reportedly died after battling cancer. He was 56 years old.

The Swedish site DN.Kultur reported the actor's passing. The actor had a long list of film and TV credits in Sweden; however, he gained a new level of international stardom when the Swedish version of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo was released in 2009, followed by the other two installment of late writer Stieg Larsson's Lisbeth Salander trilogy. After playing the pivotal role of Mikael Blomkvist in the Girl With The Dragon Tattoo trilogy, Nyqvist once again played the character in a Swedish TV mini-series based on the Millennium newspaper from Larsson's books.

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In the early 2010s, Nyqvist began to see his career in Hollywood grow, playing a villain who battled Tom Cruise's Ethan Hunt in Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol. He would appear in some smaller films (Europa Report, Disconnect) before playing the Russian mobster battling Keanu Reeves's unstoppable hitman in John Wick. During filming of the cult-classic action flick, Nyqvist was famously injured by a blow to the head - one that required eighty stitches.

After John Wick, Nyqvist returned to some smaller movie projects (I.T., Frank & Lola, The Colony, A Serious Game), with three films planned for release this year, and one in production for 2018 release, Kursk.

We offer our condolences to Nyqvist's friends, family, and fans all across the world, in this time of mourning.

This article was originally published by our partners at popculture.com.

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