Do you have Game of Thrones fever? If not, you will soon. The show has it all. There’s dragons, beautiful women (and beautiful men, to be fair), betrayal, sword fights, dragons, zombies and of course, incest. Game of Thrones is such a masterpiece, that it’s hard to remember that it’s merely fiction.
All those characters we know and love on the show are played by actors who have a life outside in the real world. And that life is … pretty different.
So let’s take a look at some of them before they became television legends. Don’t worry, there are no spoilers.
10. The Most Hated Character Ever?
Jack Gleeson is most famous for his portrayal of Joffrey Baratheon, easily the most hated character in the show. In reality, Gleeson was a student at Trinity College in Dublin and co-founder of production company Collapsing Horse. In terms of his character, the notoriously sweet Gleeson is nothing like the monster he portrayed in Game of Thrones.
9. You Wouldn’t Even Recognize Her
It would be tough to recognize Lena Headley on the streets as Cersei Lannister. The two couldn’t be more different. Offset, Headey is a vibrant brunette who likes to spend her days saving animals with PETA instead of chasing the Iron Throne like Cersei.
There seems to be a trend in actors “acting” opposite of their real-life personality. Keep reading for more examples.
8. Yes, He Is Just As Cool In Real Life
Peter Dinklage is a fan favorite on the show and in real life, he is just as cool (well, almost). Dinklage was born in Morristown, New Jersey and later received a degree in drama from Bennington College. New York Times Magazine names Dinklage as one of the “Eight Actors Who Turn Television into Art.”
7. The Girl Of Many Faces
On screen, Maisie Williams plays a rebellious tomboy but in reality, she prefers more “feminine” activities. Williams is accomplished in ballet, pointe, tap, street and freestyle dancing. She also excels at gymnastics and trampolining. For such a young actress, that’s quite the resume. But how does it stack up to Sophie Turner’s career before Game of Thrones? keep reading to find out.
6. The Queen Of The North
Just like her character in the show, Michelle Fairley is the “queen of the north.” Well, Northern Ireland, that is. Born to the well-known Brian and Theresa Fairley, Michelle grew up in Ballycastle, Northern Island and went on to appear in a wide range of television shows before Game of Thrones.
5. Quite The Debut
For someone as talented as Sophie Turner, you’d think she had years of acting experience under her belt. In fact, Game of Thrones was her first ever role in front of a camera. Another fun fact, Turner is blonde in real life. She just dyes it red for the camera.
But don’t worry, at least Daenerys Targaryen’s beautiful blonde hair is real. Or is it? You’ll find out soon enough.
4. Good Thing He Didn’t Follow His Dreams
Christopher Catesby Harington (or as we know him, Kit Harington) originally wanted to be a cameraman, war correspondent or a journalist when he was younger. Thankfully, he had a change of heart and became an actor. The show honestly wouldn’t be the same without Jon Snow!
3. The Ultimate Female Role Model
Emilia Clarke’s Daenerys Targaryen is an inspirational force to both men and women alike. Off the set, Clarke embodies that motivational spirit. At the young age of three, Clarke discovered her passion for acting and worked hard at it ever since. It sure paid off, just like it did for the next actor.
2. Lengthy Resume
Ser Jorah Mormont is a respected and loyal character on Game of Thrones and in reality, actor Iain Glen is not much different. Glen graduated from RADA where won the Bancroft medal for his achievements. Since then, he’s appeared onstage as Macbeth and Henry V and has gone on to feature in numerous Hollywood films and TV shows.
1. Thankfully His Real Life Is Not So Tragic
Theon Greyjoy has one of the most tragic story arcs in Game of Thrones. Fortunately, actor Alfie Allen has much more relaxed home life. Alfie is the son of Keith Allen and Alison Owen and younger brother of singer/songwriter Lilly Allen.