'Game of Thrones': Peter Dinklage on Returning for Season 2 and Those Tyrion Fan Videos
The Emmy-winning star of the series tells THR about going back to work in Northern Ireland and the slap seen 'round the world: "That's pretty sick stuff."
The first footage from Game of Thrones' sophomore outing has landed. And as generous any clip may be ahead of HBO's April 2012 premiere, it offers little more than a glimpse of its considerable ensemble.
For Peter Dinklage's Tyrion Lannister, the part that earned him an Emmy for supporting actor in a drama, all we get is a pensive off-camera gaze.
Dinklage returned to America from filming the second season earlier in the fall, and while speaking with The Hollywood Reporter about his independent feature Pete Smalls is Dead, the actor described going back to work on the hit series.
"I love that show," Dinklage told THR. "I love everybody that I work with. Sometimes as an actor you can get a bit spoiled working in America, so when you work over in the rough countryside of Northern Ireland, it's sort of humbling. I like working hard."
And while storylines are already laid out by the source materiel, George R. R. Martin's Song of Fire and Ice series, Dinklage remained mum on what exactly viewers can expect from his from his character during the next go-around -- though he does give it his seal of approval.
"It's a great season," he said. "I was opposed to doing TV for a long time because I thought the quality of writing wasn't very strong, as opposed to film, but there's been a shift in term of the quality of scripts. HBO has attracted a tremendous amount of great writing talent."
As far as the fan reaction -- such as expectation-besting rating on HBO and a rock star's reception at this year's Comic-Con in San Diego -- Dinklage insisted it hasn't gone to anyone's head.
"I was a little worried," he admitted. "But everybody still loves the work. Nobody's trailer is bigger. Nobody's attitude is bigger."
He does, however, think some fans may get carried away. When asked about the well-trafficked YouTube clip of his character slapping Prince Joffrey (Jack Gleeson), looped for more than 10 minutes to a soundtrack of death metal, Dinklage was a bit taken aback.
"Yeah, that's pretty sick stuff," he said, laughing. "We get sent all of that stuff, but that's pretty dark. I don't know who spent the time doing that, but thanks, I guess?"
His co-star, Gleeson, is actually the butt of many viral jokes -- something he feels isn't entirely deserved.
"Poor Jack," said Dinklage. "He's just about the nicest funniest kid on the set, and he gets a lot of grief from fans thinking he's like Joffrey. He's quite the opposite."
So while trailer sizes may remain intact, Dinklage says one thing has changed for the second season. He's not following along with the book series any longer.
"I read the first one, but I can't read them anymore," he said. "I picture all of my friends that I know, and I'm too close to it now -- not that I'm opposed to them. George Martin is an incredible writer. I'm just too close to it."