Geologists as movie stars
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Geologists as movie stars

Erik was invited by the University of Massachusetts Amherst, Department of Geosciences, to give a talk about Geologists on the Silver screen and how they are portrayed in movies. Belief it or not, but this a topic Erik and fellow geologists from the University of Gothenburg have researched for the past 10 years, working their way through 133 movies so far. Erik’s companions on this project are Lennart Björklund, Axel Sjöqvist, and Andreas Johnsson. It was very entertaining c. 30 minutes of lecture by Erik, and the American audience seemed to enjoy it too. Erik has already been invited to give the same talk for Tromsø University in Norway later in March, and at the Nordic Geological Winter Meeting in Iceland in May. After the talk there was a panel debate where Lennart Björklund took part on behalf of the Swedish research project. Erik and co-workers have published two articles in Geologiskt forum in 2013 and 2016, and one in Earth Magazine in 2015 about their results. They are currently working on an updated manuscript for the American audience. If you hadn’t already guessed the results of their research, I can hereby reveal that Geologists (naturally) to a great extent are the good guys and often heroes, sometimes saving the world (Earth).

One recent Hollywood movie stands out by for the first time having a Swedish actor, Alexander Skarsgård as the geologist in a main role – and of course a hero – in Godzilla vs. Kong (2021). It would be amazing to interview him about this role, but coming from Academia we have absolutely no idea how to get in contact with a Hollywood star. If anyone ‘out there’ knows, please let us know ( This would make him part of important research 🙂

From Erik’s presentation: Number of American or British movies with geologist(s) on the role list, the percentage of good geologists in these movies, the percentage of dead geologists (a worrying high number!), and how many female geologists (a worrying low number).
From Erik’s presentation: More than 30% of the geologists in movies dies, from very likely and unlikely causes. Notice that contact with Aliens comes on a 3rd place causing death.