The Game of Thrones and Cinderella star discusses his favourite Pixar film, what he stole from the GoT set and when he’ll get to play a villain

Post your questions for Richard Madden

Richard Madden’s on-screen life has fluctuated between the divine and the diabolical. The Scottish actor became famous worldwide when he played Robb “King In The North” Stark, the pugnacious eldest son of Ned Stark in HBO’s mega-hit Game of Thrones.

Naturally, given the epic scale of the fantasy series, the role became a huge part of his life. “I spent six months a year with these people. I saw my on-screen mother more than I saw my actual mother. So it was personal,” he told the Observer in 2013. “The logical part of me says, it’s just a job.”

The jobs kept coming – he landed the role of Prince Charming in Disney’s live-action Cinderella, then played Lady Chatterley’s hunky gamekeeper and also teamed up with Idris Elba for action film Bastille Day.

Now he is now starring in Bodyguard, a high-octane thriller from Line of Duty creator Jed Mercurio. Richard plays David, a former soldier who is assigned to protect Keeley Hawes’s hawkish home secretary from a suspected terrorist plot. However, David’s resentments over British military policy means that he might just be her biggest threat.

Richard will be joining us for a live webchat at 1pm GMT on Friday 24 August. Post your questions for him in the comments section below.

Richard Madden has arrived!

And is here to answer your questions

ceremonialbeard asks: Do you feel most comfortable acting roles set in the “past”?

Acting never feels comfortable but I enjoy the costumes in the past, and enjoy the lack of rules that come with shooting something in the future.

Bodyguard looks crazy good. Can we expect a follow-up, or is this likely to be a one-off mini-series?

That’s a question for Jed Mercurio

stevenjameshyde asks: If you could be the bodyguard to anyone in real life, who would it be? And which celebrity would you choose to bodyguard you?

I’d probably Bodyguard my niece cos I’d get to spend time with her. She’s great and fun and wild and could do with a chaperone.
I don’t think getting a celeb to chaperone me would be a great idea and they wouldn’t have much to do.

CuriousLil asks: A lot of the Games of Thrones television script was said to have been kept secret. Did you know what was going to happen to you and other characters that may not have been revealed in the books?

I knew and still know certain secrets that I’d rather not, because I like finding them out as I watch the show, which makes it hard to be friends with the cast who are still alive.

Do you now think twice about accepting wedding invitations?

I always think twice because weddings are boring.

Saul Barrett asks: Does getting more work and bigger profile tend to make you happier? What makes you most fulfilled?

Spending time with people I care about.

Scrapper69 asks: Would you support my campaign to have letters of no less than 10mm high on all shampoo and conditioner containers?

You have too much time on your hands.

fenixx asks: Did you enjoy filming GoT in Northern Ireland? Have you been back to Belfast to meet up with your old colleagues?

Yes I enjoyed filming there – beer tastes good in most cities. I meet up with them but not in Belfast. Five years there was long enough for me.

mom2two asks: Has playing David Budd made you more aware of the potential dangers that surround us every day?

I can’t wait for you to watch the show. I hope you like it.
No, not more aware or paranoid. Not more than I was before anyway.

TuskGeorge asks: Do you have a cheeky GoT tattoo done, the way the Lord of the Rings cast all did?

No because I don’t want to spend the extra time in make up every morning getting it covered!

snowfalls52 asks: What would you say has been your most challenging role so far, and what kind of a role would you like to have in the future? I can’t wait to see Bodyguard.

Thank you. I hope you enjoy the show. This is one of my most challenging roles, mentally and physically as it was relentless throughout filming. Next up I’m shooting Rocket Man, the film about Elton John’s life, which is a different adventure altogether!

10huntress13 asks: Any idea whether Oasis is ever going to happen? I loved the pilot and it had a staggering number of five-star reviews but so far there has been no announcement either way.

Oasis is not going to happen, but it was fun to dive into sci-fi for a minute.

VeveRu asks: I think you and Michelle Fairley had an amazing chemistry on screen as a mother and son duo. Would you like to work with Michelle again?

I loved working with Michelle every single day. She’s an outstanding actor and I’d jump at the chance to work with her again.

DWFan1 asks: What’s your favourite Pixar film?

Inside Out, which I don’t think is suitable for children because it made me weep!

notinamillion asks: What’s your favourite question?

What would you like to drink?

louponce5 asks: Recently I had a chance to watch the play Romeo and Juliet you did with Lily James. Such a wonderful job! I really enjoyed it. Would you like to do more plays in the future or would you rather continue working on series or the big screen?

Thanks for coming to watch. Yes I would like to do more plays in the future. I prefer to do theatre in smaller spaces. I love the Donmar, upstairs at the Royal Court, and the Bush Theatre for example. And I’d love to go back to the Citizens theatre in Glasgow where I first did theatre many years ago. But right now I’m really enjoying acting for camera and working out how to do it better.

Hagusp89 asks: Would you like to play a villain? If so, what kind of bad guy would that be? I think that would be super challenging since you seem super sweet.

I’m not that sweet really! Yes I’d love to play a villain. Watch this space…

louponce5 asks: As a huge fan of period dramas, I have to ask: would you like to be in an adaptation from a Jane Austen book?

Sure, why not!

beenyc asks: I am a big fan of your work with Lily James and Kenneth Branagh. What drew you to your role in Bodyguard because it was a departure from previous roles?

Thank you. Loved working with those two – proper artists. I was drawn to Bodyguard because of the numerous different aspects to a very complicated, damaged, functioning, strong man and father.

Espressogirl24 asks: Have you received any homemade gifts from fans lately? Do you like that kind of thing?

Wow thank you so much! I haven’t received many homemade gifts. Always slightly freaked out my friend, who received some cupcakes from a fan who had put her hair inside them because she wanted a part of her inside him! Cupcakes will not be consumed

Therebelalliance asks: Who is your favourite Lord?

Lord Dracula was pretty cool.

BeckyDavidson asks: I can’t be the only one who read this as “Richard Madeley webchat” followed by brief disappointment on realising their mistake?

I’m so sorry. I would also be significantly disappointed.

Alexxe asks: I came to know your work from the series Sirens, long before Game of Thrones was a thing – I loved your character, Ashley. I wondered how you felt doing that series in hindsight from where you are now? I always hoped they’d make another series. All the best for the future (from a Canadian living in Glasgow).

Hello Alexxe the Canadian from Glasgow. I was once a Glaswegian living in Canada, which I loved. I really enjoyed making the series Sirens. It was great fun to do some dark comedy. I’d love to do more of that kind of thing too. #boringanswer

ambermoh asks: You’ve portrayed so many different types of characters (Group B was one of my favourites), are they any genres or roles you’d like to explore that you haven’t yet?

Hi Amber, so glad you watched Group B – it’s one of my favourite things I’ve ever done and I’m still proud of it. I’m a huge sci-fi fan and I’m always excited at the prospect of doing more of that.

CraigGraham7 asks: I thought you were excellent as Cosimo D’Medici in Masters of Florence. Would you have been interested in another series that looked at Cosimos leadership of Florence and the issues that began to arise with the Bank of Medici?

I loved playing Cosimo over the 20 years that the story took place, because it covered a really exciting section of Cosimo’s rise from a young man into the leader he became. I’m keen to watch the second series, which focuses on other Medicis instead.

RuthwilsonPR asks: What are your thoughts on more West End shows leaving London: can actors influence that and is there an appetite for it among the acting community? Or does it simply come down to funding? Manchester has a great cultural offering but I’m sure I speak for a few up here when I say we’d love to see more of you in real life as well as on screen!

I think there are some amazing theatres and talent throughout the UK. Theatres I’d love to play in and directors doing outstanding work that maybe is sometimes under-appreciated because it’s not London but I firmly believe that theatre is still a huge part of the arts in many cities, and I hope that despite cuts etc that that continues to blossom, and something I hope very much to be part of.

SunsetInIbiza asks: Can you share any funny/emotional moments from when you filmed Bodyguard?

Due to the subject matter and the nature of this drama, there wasn’t a lot of funny moments behind the scenes! But many emotional ones in front of the camera, because of the intensity of the situations the characters find themselves in. I had a wonderful time working with Keeley and when together we can be very immature and giggle like children.

Scott McLennan asks: What set curios from Game of Thrones did you pilfer? Will guests visiting your home be greeted by a direwolf head or an ornate sword?

I wanted to take my sword, but airport security was an issue! So instead took one of each of the little map markers that represent each house. So there’s a little direwolf, a little Lannister lion etc on my bookshelf at home!

Emma2003 asks: What is the one film, past or present, that you would like to act in?

I’m a big fan of dinosaurs. So anything with them in it.

GeorgeStarman asks: Are you an actor do you need a good director to help you bring out the best performance or can you work on a consistent level regardless of who’s directing?

Yes George I am an actor! A great director can bring out lots in an actor’s performance. I consider myself an interpreter and the director is also an interpreter of the writer’s story. So really we’re all interpreters coming together with our own visions and trying to combine them into a rounded piece. Nothing about what I do seems to have a consistency. I don’t prepare the same for any role. But I’m always excited to work with a new director to see what kind of challenges they can bring to the project and what performance they can draw out of my interpretation.

bellecv 1asks: Would you do a superhero movie? If so, which character would you like to play?

Sure I would. Preferably, one who doesn’t wear leggings!

Will Thorpe asks: What was it like working with living legend Keeley Hawes?

Every moment working with Keeley was a joy.

seejanecreative asks: I am most moved by how you portray historic heroes like Robb Stark, Captain Weir, Bill Haskill, or Oliver Medders as everyday people with relatable flaws and emotional complexities. Is it valuable for you to perceive them as heroic when you are developing their characters?

No I don’t think that would be particularly useful for me as I don’t believe real heroes think they are at the time of their heroism.

Freedomandwhisky asks: What are some similarities between you and David Budd – favourite song or movie?

I have lots of favourite films, from Jurassic Park to Betty Blue to Christiane F. Don’t have a favourite song but I love Frank Sinatra’s album Live at the Sands.
I don’t think David Budd would be a very big fan of Jurassic Park!

Stephaniep28 asks: What’s on your travel bucket list?

I would love to explore Mexico more and lots of South America. There’s still lots of Italy I want to see because I love it so much. In the past year I’ve been focusing on trying to spend more time in Scotland in places that I’ve never been to and that’s something I plan to keep doing.

sarah12646 asks: Would you be interested in doing a sequel to Cinderella?

I think I’m a bit old for it now.

JessicaLimaJL asks: What is it like to live a war veteran? How does the emotional side work?

Without giving too much away it seems like quite a heavy thing to carry every day. And in particular this character carries it in the present as much as experiences it from the past. So as an actor to do that 14 hours a day 16 days a week for five months is a really interesting study into what people go through carrying that kind of weight every day. And it taught me a lot about what happens under the surface that most people get to see. I can only understand about 1 percent compared to people who live with it daily.

Elisa Fellitova asks: I was gutted watching the Red Wedding, in large part because of how you played Robb. You made him feel like a real person. I was wondering, what is more challenging: playing a book character like Robb Stark or Prince Charming, who fans are already familiar with, or playing a ‘new’ character who only exists in the script?

Thank you very much. They both bring different challenges. With the book character I have more material to feed off from. In the same way I love having a character that’s purely from the script. It gives me extra license to create because I have to figure out all the things I would learn from a book, but instead I figure it out from the director and the writer and just in my own head

Euqilegna asks: Did you have fun filming Ibiza? Can you actually DJ?

I can put on a playlist at best! I had a brilliant time shooting that film with a really great cast and wonderful director. It was exciting and refreshing to film a comedy instead of a serious piece and I started filming Bodyguard two days after I wrapped on Ibiza. So it was great to have that experience before I dove into the world of David Budd.

melissanbarrett asks: I remember seeing you in Noughts and Crosses back in 2008! Did you enjoy working with the RSC?

Loved working with the RSC and would happily do so again. I love the Swan Theatre, it’s a beauty!

Thank you very much to everyone who sent in questions. They were really interesting and much more fun than some interviews I’ve had in the past! Have a great weekend and please check out the new Bodyguard clip that’s gone out right now on Youtube and tune in on Sunday and Monday for the first two episodes.

Interviews From 2018

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