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Nikolaj Coster-Waldau Interviewed in Canada

Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, everyone’s favorite Kingslayer, was recently in Canada to promote his new film, Mama, a Guillermo del Toro-produced horror film that’s been getting some positive press.

Of course, where there’s film promotion, there are interviews. One of the best interviewers in Canada is George Stroumboulopoulos, who had a great interview with George R.R. Martin last year, and it looks like his interview with Coster-Waldau is similarly interesting. Here’s

a clip from

the whole interview which will air tonight on CBC Television at 7PM, and should be on-line at the George Stroumboulopoulos Tonight Youtube channel soon thereafter, which features some discussion of Game of Thrones at the 3:55 mark:

Here’s a transcript of the above, courtesy of the show:

George Stroumboulopoulos: The sci-fi fantasy world can be so huge for someone’s career. This is a moment George R.R. Martin was on the show.

George R.R. Martin (taped): The battle between good and evil, you know, that’s fine. The battle between good and evil is a universal theme, not only for fantasy but for any fiction. But my opinion has always been that the battle between good and evil is fought within the individual human heart. The fact that we, we do have good and evil in us, that we can be angels, and we can be monsters, and how do we make these choices, how do we go through life? And that’s the stuff I love to wrestle with.

GS: Do you feel that in the show?

Nikolaj Coster-Waldau: In Game of Thrones? Oh yeah, absolutely. And one of the things I love about the show and about his writing is that he doesn’t let us get away with our preconceived opinions of the various characters. Like I play Jaime Lannister, and one of the reasons I got really excited about it when I read the first time was that, well, it kind of starts with him shoving this kid out a window while he’s being very intimate with his twin sister. I mean, it’s so dark, and it’s so twisted -

GS: But the dialogue, you’re right, that in and of itself would be enough.

NCW: And then, and then on top of that he says, as he does it, “the things I do for love.”

GS: That’s when it was like, wow, it’s a different show.

NCW: Well it’s different, but it’s also interesting, you know? Because when you see the show and you think about it, you kind of go, wow, all these relationships in this show, are all more or less made out of political reasons. They’re arranged marriages. Oh no, there’s one relationship which is just based on love, that’s Jaime and Cersei. Which is ironic, because it’s so wrong on so many levels, but it’s all, then we’re talking morals, that’s a different story.

But then, what I love about the show is that now we start, it’s like - it’s like your life. I’m sure you could find a point in your life where you did something that you’re not, that you’re ashamed of.

GS: Yeah, no, I have flat-out regrets.

NCW: Well, yeah, exactly. But imagine you did a movie about you and you just started right there, at that one point where you were just a real… horrible person. You know I was just trying to find the right word, it is TV.

GS: We’ll take that word, it’s good.

NCW: Just really horrible, right? Then, of course for the first ten minutes the audience will go, “he’s horrible. That’s a bad person.” And then you might redeem yourself later on. In a way it’s the same with Jamie Lannister. You start with that point and it’s just really, really bad. But maybe in seasons to come you might see more of it. And I think it’s the same with all the characters. Like you see - I’m sorry, I’m getting all..

But with, the first season you have Ned Stark played by Sean Bean, and he’s this honourable, wonderful man, and he is. But then people seem to forget that the first thing we see him do is he’s chopping off the head of an innocent boy whose only crime was to get really scared because he saw a monster.

Well, we have to kill him because that’s the honourable thing to do. You know, it’s all in the eye of the beholder.