In real life, Jon Snow, or rather Kit Harington, might disappoint a bit. At a mere 5’7 and 3/4 (according to his IMDB profile), in person he’s a little dude almost appearing to need a piece of meat. Barefoot and squeezed up in a beige lounge chair across from a messy, unmade bed in a suite at the Beverly Hilton; Kit is casual. Dressed in blue jeans and a baggy black leather motorcycle jacket, he grabs his scraggly legs tight and balls up like a cold man huddled beside a warm fire. The site of this itty bity guy, who plays a larger than life role on a huge show known by three short letters – GOT – is ironic.
Based on George R.R. Martin’s colossal A Song of Ice and Fire novel series, Game of Thrones is HBO’s haven of blood, sorcery, and sex. The more the merrier makes it that much better for fans who feverishly tune in to the medieval cult hit that breaks down the battle between thirsty families willing to war and fight for the right to rule. Dragons blaze the glory of their mother. Zombie snow monsters eat the courage of mortal men. And then there’s Jon Snow. With a valiant good heart darkened by his conflicted lack of knowing thyself, he’s the lost, self-exiled, bastard child of the great Stark family.
The highly anticipated season 4 of Game of Thrones has millions watching in anxious need, waiting for its return at the click of 9pm on a Sunday night, so we can all be pulled back into a world of violent vengeance, deranged incestuous kings, and manipulative bitches all connected by their shared need for control and outright power.
Being the GOT fans that we are at The Shadow League, in this exclusive interview with Kit Harington, we attempt to get him to dish on Jon Snow and the upcoming season of Game of Thrones without having to read a 5000 page book set. For those that have, God bless you. But for most that won’t, this interview is for you.
Raqiyah Mays: Have you read all of the books?
Kit Harington: I still haven’t read the latest one.
KH: Because I read about four and they’re big books. I used to stack those books. My first job was in a book shop and I worked in the science fiction and fantasy section. And I used to hate George R.R. Martin because he had the heaviest books I had to carry around. And I used to stack them on the shelf, like, ‘Who is this prick?’ (Laughing)
RM: (Laughing) And now?
KH: And now, he’s my Lord and commander so… Very strange isn’t it?
RM: Wow. Life is funny like that. What’s most difficult for you about playing Jon Snow?
KH: He’s very introverted. I like him because he’s that. Because he doesn’t really speak much. He’s always very internal. But it’s not always the easiest to get what he’s feeling across on screen. He’s a tricky one to play. He’s never easy. But I feel like as long as people still like him, then I’ve done my job. Because I think he’s meant to be likeable.
RM: I think so.
KH: But he’s not easy, he’s a tricky little fucker.
RM: Well he’s been through a lot. He’s an abandoned kid.
KH: People always ask me, ‘Why is he so grumpy?’ And I’m like, ‘Well, he’s lost his family. He doesn’t know who his mother is. He’s in a place freezing surrounded by men. And there are these ice dudes out to get him and he’s lost his wolf, so……
RM: Oh, right. He lost his dog! Aw, poor little man.
KH: (Laughing) Of course he’s a little grumpy.
RM: I thought he was gonna get love though.
KH: Yeah, he gets a bit of love and then it goes wrong…
RM: Yeah that didn’t go too well. He’d trained himself to not have sex. And then he got some, and then things still didn’t work out.
KH: Wait till 4th season. He’s really grumpy. He gets really, really, grumpy…
RM: So let’s talk about this fourth season. You started a rumor at the Golden Globes about dying saying, “I don’t know, I might be out of a job. I don’t know.” I see you like to play games. And so many of us haven’t read the books. Do you know what’s going to happen?
KH: We know as far as the books. But we changed it out from the books now because it has to be an adaptation. I pretty much know what’s going to happen. Some characters don’t. Some characters have been expanded to a point where they’re not in the books, but they’re in the show so they don’t know what’s going to happen. Unlike other TV shows, where they send you one script at a time, [with Game of Thrones] they send you the whole thing. So the minute the next season is up, you get the whole script sent to you and you know what happens.
RM: Ok, so Jon is grumpy. What other surprises are there this next season?
KH: Surprises this season?
There’s a fuck load of death.
RM: But this is Game of Thrones, there’s always a lot of death.
KH: Yeah, I know, I know...
It’s the most expensive season of TV ever done. One of the most expensive episodes of TV ever done. It’s the most action packed, the most fights, the most deaths, than any of the other seasons.
RM: Hmmm… How much? When you say “expensive?”
KH: I can’t say. That’s all I can give away.
RM: Oh, it must be in your contract. I get it…
RM: So if you had it your way, who do you want to win the Game of Thrones?
KH: Tyrion [Lannister]. Nice guy. Tyrion or Jon. Me or Tyrion.
RM: Can Jon win?
KH: Yeah, I reckon so if he props up a bit and gets his balls together. Get him some balls…
RM: (Laughing) So what’s next for you?
KH: There’s a lot coming out which is good [How to Train Your Dragon 2, Seventh Son]. This year I’m very much moving into this century and looking to carve out a career over the next few years which is going to tell me what I want to do post Thrones. There are a couple projects this year that are wildly different than what I’ve done, not sword wielding or historical. They’re very much modern day. It’s about me now stepping out of the type cast really. I’ve enjoyed being in it, I’ve enjoyed being an action hero. But I’m ready to try a few other things.
Season 4 of Game of Thrones Premieres on HBO, Sunday, April 6.