Q: Your character Ivar the Boneless has a frighteningly evil glare. How do you conjure that?
A: (Laughs) I don’t find it hard at all. Of course, there’s challenging moments where I have to crawl through rain and mud in January in Ireland and I’m freezing to death … and I have to remember all these sort of things. That’s what’s challenging. The whole thing of finding the anchor in all that, that’s what I do for a living. I’ve always been pretending for a living since youth. I’ve always been playing characters in my head.
I’m going to sound like the biggest weirdo but I think a lot of actors can relate to that. So really I think it’s all about trying to understand the character. Never, ever judge your character. Always try to defend him and what he’s doing. Also if you do that, you prevent him from becoming one-dimensional … .
Q: Do you have to decompress from Ivar at the end of the day?
A: (Laughs) No, I’m not too Method in that regard and if I was I wouldn’t tell you. But I have to work out to … be able to do the stuff that he is able to do. I wasn’t able to do that at all at the beginning but when I got here two years ago they put a personal trainer on all the four sons of Ragnar , the brothers, and the personal trainer just destroyed us six days a week. So he taught us some stuff and we’re trying to hold onto that. And the Guinness, even though we need a beer after a long day of work sometimes, it’s all good fun, so it’s the best f… job in the world. It’s truly amazing, Amazing.