Viggo Mortensen took home RUSSIA! magazine's coveted Rolling R award for the year's most convincing performance as a Russian person by a Hollywood actor, it was announced yesterday. The New York–born actor was honored for his role as the frequently nude kickboxing mobster Nikolai Luzhin in David Cronenberg's Eastern Promises, which the mag hails as "sensitive, multifaceted and authentic." "Unlike the Muslim, Jewish and other communities, the Russians have been historically docile about being portrayed as drunk, murderous plotters," explains RUSSIA! editor Michael Idov — who moonlights as a contributing editor at New York — in a press release. "But that's not the offensive part. The offensive part is being portrayed as a drunk, murderous plotter with a Czech name and a Transylvanian accent."
"Believe it or not, the award actually exists," Idov told us. "It's a transparent globe thing with a Russian doll on it, and it's inscribed with the words 'For General Excellence in Acting Russian.'"