There’s Extra to Tom Glynn-Carney Than Sitting on a Throne

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GAME OF THRONES used to be indubitably one of many few mainstream exhibits that set the Northern English accent on the draw, thanks to the dulcet tones of the Starks. So or no longer it is a cramped bittersweet that Salford lad Tom Glynn-Carney’s casting as Aegon Targaryen in HBO’s prequel sequence, Rental of the Dragon, did no longer provide an quite diverse for him to set up his set of dwelling of foundation lilt. “I’d like so that you just can manufacture my accent in the future in my occupation,” he tells Males’s Nicely being over a Zoom call while in Paris for the set’s season 2 press tour. “But after I manufacture must alternate my accent for any feature, it feels like there is a healthy distance. I net to plod out of my pores and skin and set that one on for a chunk—which ability I like this job.”

There is absolutely a camaraderie both on space and in the wider industry for actors who hail from the northern aspects of England. Olivia Cooke, who plays Glynn-Carney’s onscreen mother, Alicent Hightower, is from Oldham, while twin knights Sers Erryk and Arryk Cargyll, aka Elliott and Luke Tittensor, are from Manchester, having launched their careers in the distinctive British model of Shameless. “There is a mutual brotherhood; Shameless is a landmark in Mancunian history,” Glynn-Carney says, sooner than excitedly recounting the time he met fellow Salford actor Benedict Wong. “[We] met in a pub in London. It used to be my native at the time. I went over to him [and said], ‘I’m sorry to interrupt, but I wished to impart kudos, smartly done, and thanks for flying the flag.’ We got chatting and realized we went to the same sixth form college [where students in England attend school from ages 16 through 18] and had loads of mutual guests.”

tom glynncarney as character in house of dragons

Ollie Upton/HBO

Glynn-Carney plays Aegon II Targaryen, who takes the Iron Throne in Season 2 of HBO’s Rental of the Dragon.

Glynn-Carney studied musical theater at Pendleton Sixth Originate College and later did three years at Guildhall College of Song & Drama. But his breakthrough feature got here in a project decidedly damage away the sector of musicals: Christopher Nolan‘s 2017 World Conflict II story Dunkirk, where he performed the son of Sign Rylance’s boat captain who helps rescue British squaddies from the eponymous French city. The historical performances persisted with a supporting feature in the Timothée Chalamet–led Henry V adaptation The King, playing Henry “Hotspur” Percy, and 2019’s Nicholas Hoult–led Tolkien biopic. Within the interim, he persisted to set up a occupation onstage as smartly, making his West Cease and Broadway debuts in Jez Butterworth’s acclaimed play The Ferryman, earning an Night Celebrated Theatre Award for Emerging Skill for the exquisite effort.

Now he’s channeling his theatrical prowess into the Shakespearean ranges of drama that Rental of the Dragon demands as the Seven Kingdoms put collectively for civil battle. Space 172 years sooner than the arrival of Daenerys Targaryen, the set’s season 1 finale saw Aegon without note and controversially crowned as king following the loss of life of his dad, King Viserys (Paddy Considine). Season 2 kicks off with Aegon on the Iron Throne while first inheritor Queen Rhaenyra (Emma D’Arcy) builds a vengeful advertising campaign to rob it encourage from him. “It’s the famous time we dangle viewed him with motive,” the 29-year-previous actor says. “He’s by no means had a reason to net off the bed. For anybody who’s ever struggled with mental-health components of any kind, routine and motive are pivotal. I’ve experienced that in my existence, and I wished to bring that feeling to Aegon and gaze how worthy lighter he felt.”

Here, Glynn-Carney talks by procedure of the brutality of shooting HBO’s megahit fantasy sequence, navigating the set’s tales of battle and politics amidst harrowing similarities to staunch-existence unique events, and his dangle particular space of skills.

MEN’S HEALTH: Hi, Tom! Or, I must claim, “Bonjour!”

TOM GLYNN-CARNEY: Bonjour! Ça va?

MH: Oui, ça va. How is your French?

TGC: I will have the ability to net by.

MH: At any time after I’m in France, if I are trying to talk French, I factual net beneficial, “Cease.”

TGC: That’s funny, is no longer it? On fable of generally for those who net into varied countries, of us back it extra. The French are factual like, “You realize what, guys? We talk English. It’s stunning.”

MH: How has the press tour been going?

TGC: Heavier this time, for distinct. I was fascinated with about a bits and bobs [for season 1], but they did no longer decide on to provide too worthy away in opposition to the waste. That you just can’t talk about episodes 8, 9, and 10 [at the start of the season] for those who factual set up [at the end]. But this time, it is possible you’ll well perchance perchance perchance be fully into the fray.

MH: Rental of the Dragon is basically the most broad narrate it is possible you’ll well perchance perchance simply dangle done to this point, but it is possible you’ll well perchance perchance simply dangle additionally done a form of theater work. I saw you in The Glass Menagerie in 2022, so I dangle to rely on about costarring with Amy Adams.

TGC: She’s primarily the most grounded, light, humble, form, generous, selfless person. It used to be an absolute pleasure to work with her daily. It felt like going to work along with your mate.

tom glynncarney sitting on the iron throne in season 2 of house of dragons

Ollie Upton/HBO

Glynn-Carney atop the Iron Throne in Season 2 of HBO’s Rental of the Dragon.

MH: How worthy has theater been a foundational dwelling to put collectively for something like Rental of the Dragon?

TGC: I could well perchance no longer be an actor without theater. It’s where all of it started, and or no longer it is where it must proceed. For me, or no longer it is like sharpening all my instruments, being braver with my choices and turning into extra contented with the diagram that of failing. You opinion magic in those moments when things can and dangle the functionality to pass imperfect—or no longer it is unhealthy and unpredictable.

MH: You net to edit as smartly. Every night you rush onstage and could well alternate the performance for those who’d like.

TGC: Precisely. Americans talk about film being a director’s medium, TV being a producer’s medium, and theater being an actor’s medium. You would possibly want to well perchance perchance tweak that as you gaze match; there is no one stopping you once the curtains are up, and Rental of the Dragon is a nice hybrid of theater and the massive scale of film and TV that we are able to rob pleasure in as smartly. There are a form of comparisons I drew with Aegon from Shakespearean tales and characters and moments.

MH: Any protest character?

TGC: Richard II. There is a broad comparison that runs practically parallel for their complete lifetime. And funnily sufficient, Richard II is indubitably one of many characters I dangle always wished to play. So I’m doing it with a white wig on.

MH: I learned an online actor profile from early for your occupation that lists out all of your skills. An asterisk next to the skill ability “sturdy”—there are a host of!

TGC: I’m proficient. What can I squawk?

MH: Ballroom and Latin American dancing, up to date dance, ballet, tap, jazz, and intermediate tumbling. That’s gymnastics, ethical?

TGC: Yeah.

MH: What’s diabolo?

TGC: Diabolo is like a circus skill with a stick and string.

“I dangle NO NEPOTISM or anything else like that TO DRAW UPON. It used to be all DOWN TO ME, what WORK I DID, and any LUCK I COULD GARNER and originate primarily the most of in a HELPFUL WAY.”

MH: Will we net any diabolo in Rental of the Dragon season 2?

TGC: No longer from me, that is for distinct. A lot of the things on that listing I will potentially by no means exercise. Should it is possible you’ll well perchance perchance perchance be in third year of drama college, academics are trying to oversell you as worthy as conceivable to give you each combating probability. But or no longer it is hilarious looking encourage.

MH: I like the diagram that that it is possible you’ll well perchance perchance dangle gotten a feature because of your intermediate tumbling. Like it used to be between you and another guy, but he used to be finest a beginner tumbler.

TGC: Precisely! [Dunkirk casting directors] John Papsidera and Toby Whale seemed at my CV, confirmed it to Chris Nolan, and dangle been like, “Witness, this guy can manufacture diabolo. Get dangle of him for your film for fuck’s sake.”

MH: And the comfort is history! Severely although, having each probability is known for folks from the North, given the sheer distance from London opportunities. You would possibly want to well perchance perchance simply dangle got acknowledged in interviews that you just acknowledge the privilege of your work, but for those who started off what dangle been your expectations versus the actuality?

TGC: Privilege has near later in existence. Within the event you near from any form of working-class, regional space, it is possible you’ll well perchance perchance simply must set in extra graft and set yourself procedure extra. I accomplish no longer dangle any nepotism or anything else like that to draw upon. It used to be all down to me, what work I did, and any success I could well garner and originate primarily the most of in a considerable procedure. But it is possible you’ll well perchance perchance simply dangle so that you just can manufacture accents for those who near from the North, or it is possible you’ll well perchance perchance perchance be finest working in a unquestionably tight niche. I’m very fortunate now, but perchance I’ve undersold the onerous work and graft that went into it early and restful does.

MH: What used to be the graft? Drama college in London is no longer low-phrase either.

TGC: Fully. Plan no longer net me started on that. The graft started after I was about 14, making an are trying to accept as true with my head with as many scripts, playwrights, and movies to educate myself. My dad and mother dangle been encouraging, but they weren’t smartly-versed in film. The theater I was exposed to used to be beginner dramatic musical theater. That used to be a perfect schooling for me, but we by no means had the money to be going down to London to manufacture trips to glimpse things in the West Cease. Going to sixth form college, I met a form of like-minded mates for the famous time. I was extra or less ostracized a cramped bit in college for liking theater and music. Artwork wasn’t frigid where I’m from, so it used to be always my tunnel vision to net to London and educate at drama college for some time. I believed I wished to manufacture musicals, on fable of that used to be all I was exposed to, but I plugged away with rising my knowledge about theater and plays and Chekhov and Shakespeare. Additionally, I was like, “I accomplish no longer think I must dance with out a waste in sight.”

If I net to dance in a film, there is one in protest I’ve got in tips, and I’m gonna set it available—a Gene Kelly biopic.

actors tom glynn carney, fionn whitehead, producer emma thomas, director christopher nolan, actors harry styles and jack lowden pose for dunkirk photocall on july 16, 2017 in dunkerque, france

Laurent Viteur

Tom Glynn-Carney, Fionn Whitehead, Producer Emma Thomas, Director Christopher Nolan, Actors Harry Styles and Jack Lowden pose for the Dunkirk photocall on July 16, 2017 in Dunkerque, France.

MH: Did it is possible you’ll well perchance perchance simply dangle phase-time jobs all the procedure by procedure of your studies?

TGC: When I was in drama college, they acknowledged we weren’t allowed to dangle phase-time jobs, on fable of we dangle been in the college for approximately 12 to 13 hours a day. But I needed to, on fable of I could well perchance no longer give you the money for to pay my rent. I used to pass with my guitar to cramped drinking locations and bars and rely on if they famous any form of entertainment or anything else. I’d sit in the nook and play.

MH: Whereas shooting Rental of the Dragon season 2, what used to be your routine by procedure of stamina and dealing on both your mental and physical energy?

TGC: Aegon moves in any other case to the procedure I pass, in issue that could well rob its toll for those who accomplish no longer are trying to search out a reset. I like to dangle a default stage of where my physique’s at and always are trying to set up either north or south of that, or I waste up having components. So a form of yoga or stretching, retaining match, drinking smartly, getting sleep. All that helps mental readability, as smartly as being able to be at work and live focused.

Closing year used to be quite a elaborate year, dancing around non-public stuff as smartly as the work. In hindsight, I contain [the shoot] potentially helped and got here at a factual time. You would possibly want to well perchance perchance support yourself by no longer going out on the lash each night. Treating yourself to the weekend, here and there, but primarily staying focused and getting the job done.

“Our famous focal point with the set is to PROVIDE AN ESCAPE, and no longer are trying to SPOON-FEED or STAND ON A POLITICAL SIDE of the fence.”

MH: You shot season 1 all the procedure by procedure of the pandemic—how did things fluctuate this time?

TGC: You would possibly want to well perchance perchance gaze each varied and dangle out! I have in mind doing season 1 and every person used to be carrying masks. You would possibly want to well net to clutch of us by their eyes, after which we turned into up at the wrap birthday celebration and it used to be like I’d by no means met anybody.

Bantam Fire & Blood: 300 Years Sooner than A Game of Thrones (The Targaryen Dynasty: The Rental of the Dragon)

Fire & Blood: 300 Years Before A Game of Thrones (The Targaryen Dynasty: The House of the Dragon)

MH: How worthy did reading George R.R. Martin’s book support along with your performance?

TGC: I knew [Aegon] used to be an integral feature, but [when I was cast] it hadn’t sunk in quite how pivotal he’s. I read the book to dangle an diagram of how George R.R. Martin had worded it and set all of it collectively, and it reads as if it used to be a history from two separate accounts. I cherished it, but I did no longer let that particularly influence my picks for Aegon. I bring as worthy of myself in as I will have the ability to. That’s what I do know and could well originate it relatable. I learned it onerous making comparisons with varied performances. It’s why I was a cramped hesitant about watching Game of Thrones.

MH: Tell us about Aegon’s streak in season 2.

TGC: Now we dangle had about 10 days between the waste of season 1 and the starting of two. He’s had that time to composed down from the adrenaline of his coronation. The fun of it, but additionally the specter of Rhaenyra. I wished to bring some levity to it and kick off with a chunk of a spring in his step. Any individual optimistic. He’s now navigating every person else around him, the procedure that folks are treating him, and playing this unique admire he’s been given. Persons are listening to him a cramped bit extra, but he’s additionally mindful that there are of us in that little council chamber which dangle been doing this for a unquestionably very long time. They’re wary of him and his procedure so will potentially are trying to set up him on quite a factual leash. It is a fight that he’ll must fight sooner or later.

MH: How frequently are you dragon using? Will we add it to your particular skills?

TGC: They can set an asterisk next to it! It’s this broad steel plate on hydraulic legs. It guidelines you around, and so they swap out the saddles reckoning on which dragon is supposed to be ridden. We now dangle wind machines and monitors that set very minute but considerable visuals for eyeline and direction.

tom glynncarney posing on rooftop

Guy Aroch

MH: “To battle, then” is indubitably one of your lines. Conflict is political. Artwork is political. What manufacture you deem Rental of the Dragon says about politics and conflicts this day?

TGC: There dangle been many tales beneficial about battle, war, and division, but that is up to the target audience to decipher in decide on to me telling them what we’re making an are trying to manufacture. We’re no longer making an are trying to educate in any protest procedure.

If of us gaze comparisons, that is their interpretation of it, and so they’re smartly internal their ethical to originate those comparisons. Our famous focal point with the set is to provide an scurry and no longer are trying to spoon-feed or stand on a political side of the fence. We’re making a fantasy set. You shut the curtains, turn your cell phone off, and undercover agent it for an hour a week. Inch for that time, after which we are able to all near encourage and take a look at to take care of the atrocities in the sector for the time being.

MH: A storyline unhurried in the season’s first episode is that Aegon’s youngster gets beheaded. How manufacture it is possible you’ll well perchance perchance perchance be feeling about that coming out? It’s onerous to flee from what’s taking place in the sector ethical now for those who could well perchance be seeing the same horrors play out onscreen.

TGC: Yeah, indubitably. It’s sad. It’s poignant. I accomplish no longer think there is ever factual timing for showing your youngster being beheaded. It’s refined. It’s factual a chunk of a nightmare.

MH: It’s upsetting. What used to be your first reaction for those who read the scripts?

TGC: It used to be factual relentless. I have in mind being exhausted after reading factual one episode. I could well finest read one each two days to let it sink in and be like, Simply, net encourage into it. It’s visceral.

MH: How did you disentangle yourself from Aegon and Rental of the Dragon?

TGC: I’ve got lovely guests and household around me and felt very fortunate in that sense that I factual net to be me for a chunk. Plan no longer net me imperfect—that gets wearisome, and I accomplish no longer like being me on a conventional foundation. That’s why I like doing this job. Acting is a broad phase of who I’m, but it absolutely’s no longer who I’m. It is no longer what I’m. I’ve factual got to accept as true with my time with varied of us and things that originate me unquestionably feel like me, ?

This interview has been condensed for whine material and readability.

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