Kristian Nairn visited Australia this weekend to be a part of Oz Comic-Con in Melbourne. During what was sure to be a busy weekend meeting with fans, he also participated in a Game of Thrones panel with his co-star Daniel Portman.
The Guardian has shared some highlights from the Q&A. Kristian talks about his work on Season 4, and speculates on where he would like to see Hodor and Bran head next, and how he would like the series to end.
Was it difficult playing Hodor when the character Bran [Stark] was controlling him?
People either think Hodor is a very easy character to play or a very difficult one, there’s no in between. But it’s a lot of fun having to completely switch personalities inside four seconds, with no words. That’s a joy for an actor to get to show all that complex emotion in such a short space of time.
Did you have to do any special training for the fight scenes?
When I was a kid I was obsessed with Thor. I had a hammer. So [the fight scenes] came very naturally. Someone remarked how deft I was with this hammer.
Given the nature of Game of Thrones in which many key characters are killed off, what kind of death would you like [author] George RR Martin to give your character?
I would like Hodor to die in the middle of a big speech. The first time ever he stands up to say something different he gets eaten by a wolf. That would be ironic.
(Daniel’s answer to this questions was simply, “brothel.”)
Would you rather play a character like Ned Stark for three episodes or a character like Hodor for four seasons?
Obviously Ned Stark is Ned Stark and he’s wonderful and a legend and all that crap [laughs] but Hodor is an ongoing part. It’s an actor’s dream to only have one line and people like him, so I’m really lucky. And it’s one of the longest living characters.
If your character could join another storyline what would it be?
I would like to make my way across to the dragons. I think Hodor has an affinity with animals. I know at Winterfell he wasn’t afraid of the direwolves. He’s able to control them or stop them from attacking. I’d like to see how he’d react to one of the dragons. Like, would he try to hug it?
How would you like the series to end?
My theory – and this really is only my theory … I don’t think it’s going to be as simple as who wins the throne. I think it’s going to be bigger than that. Daenerys represents some sort of elemental force, the White Walkers represent magic and ice and perhaps Bran is going to represent nature. I’d like it to be some kind of huge clash.
The Game of Thrones travelling exhibition recently visited Australia as well, and in an interview with News.Com.Au, Kristian jokes, “I never thought I’d see the day that my smelly old slacks would attract visitors. That costume hasn’t been washed in four seasons.”
It’s been four seasons with one pair of slacks, and one famous word, but Kristian believes that there’s more to Hodor than meets the eye. “I do feel like he’s kind of a super character. He’s there for a reason. He’s kind of too present throughout the storyline to just have no purpose. I don’t think he is simple. That’s my interpretation of him. Some people think he is. He can follow basic commands. He knows when to be afraid. I just think that something has happened to him somehow to stunt his vocabulary, I’d like to see, one day, what that was.”
Kristian and Daniel also gave a short interviews with the official Oz Comic-Con channel about their time in Melbourne, and what they were excited to see at the convention.
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