Game of Thrones star Kit Harington, who portrays the sensitive Jon Snow on the hit HBO series, makes his big screen debut as a gladiator February 21 in the historical epic Pompeii about the volcanic eruption that wiped out the Roman city of the title almost 2,000 years ago. But Game of Thrones fans are already blowing up about something else — the actor’s newly ripped eight-pack torso.
So, are the Game of Thrones star’s shockingly well-defined abs the real deal, or just the product of digital movie magic? Harington gave the answer at a promotional event for the upcoming disaster flick in Los Angeles. And the answer is — they are 100 percent authentic, and hard-earned.
“I’m playing a gladiator and they were very, very fit men and they were fighters and they had to look a certain way and be a certain way and I thought I’d be doing the story an injustice if I didn’t go to the gym quite a bit,” he said in an interview with Access Hollywood. “And then it becomes obsessional. Once you go along that path, it’s hard to slow down.”
But as hard as Harrington hit the weight room, his backbreaking, ab-popping workouts were only part of how he achieved the ultra-cut look.
“It’s 70 percent diet and 30 percent working out,” he explained. “It’s tough to start with.You then have to maintain it throughout the film. It’s not eating bad things, which is the hardest.”
“It consisted of four hours a day of workouts: two hours of intense fight training with swords and weaponry, an hour of weight training, then another hour of cardio, and that was covered with an 1,800-calorie diet, which was brutal,” he explained.
So how do the epic fight scenes in Pompeii compare with the scrappier battles in Game of Thrones?
“In Game of Thrones, the fights are far more, kind of earthy, gritty, and practical. They last about four or five beats, and then someone’s dead,” Harington told Vanity Fair magazine. “This is showmanship. The fights were longer, there were more of them, they were more flashy.”