Stay up to date with notifications from The Independent

Notifications can be managed in browser preferences.

Game of Thrones: Alfie Allen says conversation with domestic violence victim made him realise his responsibilities as an actor

The actor was deeply moved after a female fan suffering from physical abuse told him that his performance gave her strength

Neela Debnath
Friday 13 February 2015 17:11 GMT
Comments

It’s a show that rarely shies away from uncompromising brutality and is often criticised for its levels of graphic violence.

So it came as something of a surprise to Game of Thrones star Alfie Allen when a fan praised him for his portrayal of a torture victim.

The 28-year-old actor plays Theon Greyjoy, a young man who is kidnapped and horrifically tortured by his sadistic captor. While many viewers may find the scenes disturbing to watch, Allen said that the female fan told him that she was a victim of domestic violence and actually drew strength from Theon.

“She pulled me aside and said ‘I get beaten by my husband. He hits me in places that no one ever sees, in the way that you receive abuse in Game of Thrones, it’s not pathetic and it gives me strength’,” he said at a recent press event in London.

“I have to be honest I was not expecting her to say something like that. It wasn’t a crazy, weird encounter at all. In fact it kind of made me realise that I do have responsibilities as an actor.”

Allen, who is the younger brother of singer Lily Allen, continued: “You kind of tend to think of – I have self-loathing, [acting] is such a vain profession. Is it really making a difference to anyone’s life?”

He has previously spoken about the Theon’s torture scenes, saying that at times it was “very hard and isolated and lonely” during filming.

Some of the most harrowing scenes in the show have included the murder of a heavily pregnant woman and the public beheading of an innocent man. But Theon's ongoing torture ordeal is among the toughest aspects of the drama to watch.

Allen will be reprising his role as Theon in season five of Game of Thrones which starts in April.

Game of Thrones: The Complete Fourth Season is out on Blu-ray & DVD 16th February

Join our commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in