Game Of Thrones actor Alfie Allen: “My career isn’t about payback”He comes off second best in Game of Thrones and gets dissed by his big sister on the radio. Here he talks about the Zen of losing.
THE RED BULLETIN: Are you a masochist?
ALFIE ALLEN: Why do you ask?
Your Game of Thrones character, Theon Greyjoy, is constantly being humiliated and tortured and ultimately ends up being castrated. That can’t be much fun to act.
I’ve got to pay the mortgage somehow!
So you’re doing it for the money?
No, to be serious about it, it’s very interesting to play a man who is reduced to nothing. Before that the bedroom was where he wielded authority; then his sole weapon is taken away from him.
How does he cope with that?
He has to accept his weaknesses. He knows that they exist, and by accepting that side of himself and acknowledging that side of his character, he can turn it into armor, he can create a new man and find a strength to use against the world.
You’ve had your moments of weakness yourself…
Well, your sister Lily wrote that song about you. It included the line, “My little brother’s in his bedroom smoking weed. I tell him he should get up ’cos it’s nearly half past three.”
Oh, that. Well, what can I say? That’s just the sort of thing siblings do. One could say I proved her wrong.
I’m happy with what I’ve achieved. But I didn’t forge a career as payback! It’s got nothing to do with what my sister has done. All that matters is that you live your own life and do your own thing. Don’t do something in reaction to someone else, because then you’re f*cked. That’s why I love it when people do something they believe in, even when everyone’s telling them that they’re making a mistake. People like that are my heroes.
How do you react when people call you Reek, your Game of Thrones character name?
It goes in one ear and out the other. It really doesn’t annoy me. What matters is that people are otherwise nice to me.
Iwan Rheon, who plays your nemesis in the show, thinks he could best you in real life too.
Why? What’s he said?
He says he’d thrash you in a game of pool.
That’s bullshit. He doesn’t know what he’s talking about.
Isn’t it payback time?
For what? He’s a cool guy. We’re mates.
Is there any behavior you wouldn’t accept from someone?
Well, Iwan supports Manchester United. In that regard, he’s a real letdown of a man. The only team that matters is Arsenal.