John Bradley photographed by Rankin
We quizzed Game Of Thrones' John Bradley, aka our favourite man of the Night's Watch Samwell Tarly, on everything from bromances to new romances and what he really thinks of the Queen sitting on the Iron Throne.
InStyle: What do you think of The Queen visiting the Game Of Thrones set this week?
John: I don’t know if she’s a fan – maybe she doesn’t even have Sky, maybe she was swayed by the David Tennant adverts and subscribed to Virgin instead. Or maybe she’s a dab hand at an illegal download. But I think it’s amazing that she visited the set. Game Of Thrones is great for this country. It’s the biggest show ever produced in Europe, it’s got a fantastic local Northern Irish production team and the fact that we’re showcasing British talent, is really great. It’s really flattering that she’s has taken the time to acknowledge all that. I was working – so gutted I wasn’t there.
InStyle: How do you think your cast and crew members scrubbed up?
John: It's always quite strange for me to see them in their civilian clothes. So to see them in their best bib and tucker really made me swell with pride. They didn't let us down. It would be nice to think that the Queen goes away thinking that the entire cast dress like that on a daily basis thus making us the most uniformly glamorous cast in TV history.
InStyle: Were you a bit gutted she didn't sit on the throne?
John: Slightly gutted, but I have to say I completely understand. I'd say that the whole 'sitting on the Iron Throne' experience is intended to be a novelty for people who don't have that many encounters with thrones in their day to day lives. If you're Her Majesty and you sit on a throne a fairly large part of the time then the novelty is lost. I think we can safely say she's over thrones.
InStyle: But the bad news is the show’s over for another year! What do you do during the break?
John: With all the press and promotion it takes about ten months out of the year, so we don’t get those withdrawal symptoms quite so much as everybody else! Season 4 has only just ended and we’re already shooting Season 5 next month.
InStyle: Are you quite self-critical when watching yourself on screen?
John: Well you never look as cool as you think you do. There was a bit at the end of Season 3 where Sam and Gilly are running away after they killed the white walker fleeing for their lives and I thought I was running a lot faster than I seem to be when I watched it back. I thought, ‘They’re going to have to slow this down, I’m going to be a blur I’m going so fast’. Turns out - no. But as soon as you start thinking about it like that, wondering how good you look or what you look like, you’re lost.
InStyle: Everyone’s obsessed with GOT spoilers…
John: When people stop me in the street and they say, ‘Can you give us any spoilers?’ I always think, well I could do, but would you rather find out what’s going to happen with an HBO budget with some of the most talented producers and directors and actors in TV history or would you rather have me just in the street with my little Manchester voice?
InStyle: You work closely with Kit Harington, can you tell us a secret about him?
John: Well it was a secret but I think he’s quite happy to go public about it these days; one of his ancestors invented the flushing toilet. John Harington, I think he was called. I don’t think Kit was ashamed of it, but I think he’s finally embracing the role that his family played in toilet history. That’s the thing with heartthrobs; I think most of them would be quite keen to leave any aspect of toilet out of their public image.
InStyle: Game Of Thrones is known for killing off its characters, do you worry that Sam isn’t going to make it?
John: The show at the moment is killing characters off way before the books do, so there’s plenty of opportunity for them to decide your time has come! When we were filming with Joseph Altin and Mark Stanley, (who play Pyp and Grenn,) and they died way ahead of time, me and Kit were trying to reassure them that if David and Dan think you’re worth killing off it’s a big compliment because they know it’s going to hit the audience right in the gut.
InStyle: If Sam has to cop it, do you have a particular way you’d like him to go?
John: Other characters die great, heroic deaths, even Joffrey being poisoned is a dramatic way to go but I think the most likely death for Sam is to have some kind of cardiac arrest running up the stairs. That would be such a typical way for Sam to go, in a way that was a bit tragic and unnoticed.
InStyle: We’ve heard from a very reliable source you have a new girlfriend…
John: Yes, the lovely Miss Emily Dean.
InStyle: How did you come to meet InStyle’s Deputy Editor Emily?
John: Well I like to bask in the fact that I can say I was introduced to my girlfriend through Jonathan Ross, I’m a bit desperate for people to ask me just so I can say that. It was at the Game Of Thrones Season 4 Premiere this year and I knew who she was because I’m the biggest fan of the Saturday morning show she does with Frank Skinner on Absolute radio. I’ve also been a massive fan of Frank for fifteen years and I’d always listened to the show podcasts all over the world when I was away for Game of Thrones, when I’m nervous it’s always calmed me down. So I’ve got to pinch myself a bit now we're in a relationship. I’m just incredibly happy, we both are.
InStyle: Who's the person you were most excited to find out was a fan?
John: Well I don’t think it gets much better than President Obama; he’s a massive fan of Game Of Thrones, which is quite unsettling. If me and Kit are filming a scene, after every line you think, ‘I wonder if Mr Obama liked that one?’.
InStyle: We love your bromance with Kit Harington, do you and Kit make each other laugh?
John: Yeah, we always have. Because I’ve worked with Kit so much I’m completely comfortable with him as a person and as a performer. There’s such a mutual trust and support and we’ve been all over the world together, and I always think as long as he’s there I can never feel too out of my comfort zone. Kit is my comfort blanket basically. But I like to think I’m his as well. The thing that me and Kit laugh at more than anything else is this bit from the first season of I’m Alan Partridge when Alan plays Hot Chocolate’s ‘It Started With A Kiss’. Kit’s Alan Partridge impression is very good and so is mine so we have a bit of a Partridge off.
By George Driver