Born Rolf Åke Mikael Nyqvist in Stockholm, Sweden, it wasnt until he was over a year old when he was finally adopted from the orphanage he had been given to. His father was a lawyer and his mother a writer. It wasnt until he had his first child that he decided to seek out his biological parents. After a long journey, he met his biological mother who is Swedish and is now close to his biological father who is Italian and a pharmacist. Acting wasnt always originally on the agenda for Nyqvist. A career in hockey was desired until an injury lead to an early retirement. At the age of 17, Nyqvist went to Omaha, Nebraska in America as an exchange student for a year. This is where his passion for acting first sparked. He took his first acting classes and played amongst other roles, a part in a school version of the drama Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller. However, upon returning to Sweden he got accepted into Ballet school but after one year gave it up insisting he was too stiff and twirls and twists were not for him. An ex-girlfriend suggested to try theatre instead and at 19 years old, he was accepted into the Swedish Academic School of Drama in Malmö. He then went onto work mainly in theatre but also had several parts in film productions.