Stephen Dillane, who plays the role of Stannis Baratheon in the popular HBO series Game of Thrones, says he feels the show is “too brutal” and “hardcore” for his tastes. His only really positive reaction to the show is the money he has made acting in it.
Dillane said in a recent interview that playing the would-be king for five seasons of Game of Thrones was one of the most “bizarre” experiences of his entire acting career.
Fans of the Stannis Baratheon actor will probably feel upset at learning their hero didn’t enjoy the experience of his role, but one does have to remember that his character burned his daughter alive during the show.
— Nerdist (@nerdist) March 16, 2016
As reported by Newsweek, Dillane told the French magazine Liberation that he doesn’t regret having performed in the role of Stannis Baratheon in Game of Thrones, but that he has nothing really to say about it.
Dillane told them in the interview, “I did not understand the series or its success while I was in it. The experience was very bizarre, it slipped through my fingers. For me to like a role I need to be able to be interested in it, which was really not the case. I was a bit overwhelmed by the events.”
— Dan Casey (@osteoferocious) March 16, 2016
However, in a separate interview with Radio Times, Dillane did admit to enjoying one aspect of appearing in Game of Thrones, and that was the money he earned for the experience.
“Money is the main thing I got out of it.”
When asked if he got any “professional and personal satisfaction” in playing the role, Dillane said with a slight smile, “Er, no.”
The Stannis Baratheon actor went on to explain how the show was too “brutal” to watch, saying, “I couldn’t watch much of that anyway. It’s hardcore. Too tough for me. It’s just too painful.”
He said the show is “pretty intense, quite overwhelming, the whole world of it is pretty overwhelming.”
When Dillane heard that fans had stopped watching Game of Thrones after his character, Stannis Baratheon, ordered his own daughter burned alive, the 58-year-old actor said he didn’t blame them. However, wary of criticizing the show too much, he did go on to praise the HBO series.
“It’s fantastic. I don’t dismiss it at all. I think it’s fantastic. I think it’s an extraordinary thing. An amazing phenomenon. A really amazing phenomenon.”
When asked what he did like about the filming of the series, Dillane said he enjoyed hanging out with his co-stars, including Liam Cunningham (Davos Seaworth) and Carice van Houten (who plays Melisandre or the Red Woman).
“I liked the nice people, the craic and hanging out in Belfast with Cunningham and Carice and the guys from Castle Black.”
Dillane went on to say the first three seasons were just him with Liam and Carice and that when they ended up going to Castle Black, it was a lot more fun.
However, despite everything, Stephen Dillane said that the most he really got out of the show was the money, saying, “Money is the main thing I got out of it. It’s an odd situation. There is a kind of etiquette around these things. I think it’s extraordinary. I am not dismissing it at all.”
For fans of the Stannis Baratheon character, there was an answer to a question on everyone’s mind. When Stannis was last seen towards the end of Season 5, he was wounded on the battlefield and about to be killed by Brienne of Tarth.
His last words were, “Go on, do your duty.”
When Stephen Dillane was asked if his Stannis Baratheon character is actually dead, his brief answer to that question was, “As far as I know, yeah.”
[Image via HBO]