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    Daniel Portman talks about  exquisite sets and being part of The Game of Thrones

    Jovial and far more expressive than his character Podrick Payne, Daniel Portman’s love for The Game of Thrones began well before he was cast in the series. But now part of the global hit show, he says that it is a blessing to be working with the ensemble cast, though sudden killings change things around! He reveals more of life in Westeros.

    Being part of a phenomenon
    I am a huge fan. I was an avid follower of the first season, well before I was cast as Pod. I remember when I heard I got the role, fireworks just went off in my head! It was a dream come true. Starting out, I don’t think anyone knew it would become such a phenomenon because you cannot prepare for that. But certainly we all hoped for its success. 1004OTBLead1

    Book versus show
    I was a fan of the literature, and by the time I was cast, I had got up to the second book. Then I stopped so as not to get ahead of myself. While I find both equally compelling, I think being part of the show has me in favour of it a tad more. When you work so closely with a project, it become part of you.

    Actor appeal
    It is a life changing experience to be on a show like this. For a young actor like myself, it is even more incredible to be seen and heard across the world by so many people.

    Working with Peter Dinklage and others.
    Peter is just an exceptional talent. He is tremendously funny. But what is more amazing is that he can easily switch from being relaxed to being fully into his character instantly. He is very professional but doesn’t take himself seriously. I’ve learned plenty from him. And Gwendoline Christie (who plays Brienne of Tarth) is incredibly lovely. I’ve worked closely with her on set and she has an infectious energy.

    1004OTBLead3From reality to fantasy:
    It is not hard for me to switch gears into being Pod. The sets are so detailed and the costumes so authentic, you naturally ease into the role. It is like you are teleporting into Westeros and it has nothing to do with reality, once you arrive there.

    Characters you find intriguing:
    Jamie Lannister and Lord Varys. They are both very layered and complex but seem so different on the face of it all.

    Sneak peek into the next season:
    It is certainly going to deviate further from the book. In short, it’s going to be bloody, sexy and more fantastic.

    If you met George RR Martin…
    I would say thank you very much to him for creating this world and such fascinating characters. I would also as him if he thought I was doing justice to ‘his’ Podrick.

    A people’s show:
    While the world may be fictional, it draws the audience in because it weaves in politics and relationships, which are always topical. The relationships are very realistic and the characters are so deep, you can get into their minds and understand. You can actually empathise.

    Premieres at 6.30 am,
    Monday on HBO Defined

    — Aakanksha Devi

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