The Northman’s Ethan Hawke Talks Nude Scene With Willem Dafoe (And There’s Howling At The Moon Involved)

Ethan Hawke in The Northman
(Image credit: Focus Features )

Being an actor is a unique job. While it offers amazing opportunities, sometimes one is tasked with going outside of the box while in front of a crew of people. Robert Eggers’ upcoming epic film The Northman looks like it’s going to be a wild one, and actor Ethan Hawke recently talked about the nude scene he has with Willem Dafoe. And yes, there’s howling at the moon involved.

Robert Eggers assembled an outstanding cast to bring The Northman alive. While the movie stars Alexander Skarsgård and the talented Anya Taylor-Joy, the supporting cast includes more names like Nicole Kidman, Willem Dafoe, and Ethan Hawke. In an interview with GQ, the latter actor recently teased a particular scene he shares with Dafoe, where the two legends had to get in the buff. Ashe put it,

We have one amazing scene. We get naked and do some kind of Viking acid and howl at the moon together. And oh my god, if you have to be naked and howl at the moon, he’s a great person to do it with.

I mean, he’s got a point. Willem Dafoe is a universally acclaimed actor, who is known for always giving 100 percent of himself on screen. So if you had to do a nude scene for Robert Eggers with someone, Dafoe is definitely that guy. You just can’t feel self-conscious when he’s so committed.

Ethan Hawke shared this funny tidbit about The Northman in an interview about his starring role in Disney+’s Moon Knight series. Eventually the conversation turned to that upcoming epic blockbuster, which looks like it’s going to have plenty of gnarly violence. But the movie's also going to include some shots of Willem Dafoe and Hawke baring it all.

The first trailer and poster from The Northman understandably puts a ton of focus on Alexander Skarsgård’s protagonist Amleth. The poster showed off the Big Little Lies actor’s hulking physique and washboard abs. But apparently the nudity is being spread around for the cast of the upcoming movie. We’ll just have to wait and see how trippy Ethan Hawke’s sequence ends up being.

Robert Eggers is a filmmaker who is known for having a unique vision, mixing realism and out of this world concepts. His first movie The Witch was a terrifying and trippy tale throughout the 1630’s, while The Lighthouse told a tale of isolation and madness in the 1890’s. Both are wholly unique and disturbing projects in their own right, and Eggers is once again working with collaborators Anya Taylor-Joy and Willem Dafoe on The Northman.

The action of The Northman looks like it’s going to scratch an itch for medieval action that some fans have been feeling since Game of Thrones ended years ago. But with Eggers behind the camera, smart money says he’s going to have plenty of surprises up his sleeve.

The Northman is expected to arrive in theaters on April 22nd. In the meantime, check out the 2022 movie release dates to plan your next movie experience. 

Corey Chichizola
Movies Editor

Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Double majored in theater and literature during undergrad. After working in administrative theater for a year in New York, he started as the Weekend Editor at CinemaBlend. He's since been able to work himself up to reviews, phoners, and press junkets-- and is now able to appear on camera with some of his favorite actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid.