Oh, and his acting choices. I’ll give you an example. When I got back from Blackwater and I was on the rock and burnt to bits, we rehearsed that scene. And this is a man I’ve been breaking my back for for a long time. His first line was, “I thought you were dead.” And most actors, they’d stand up and there’d be a moment of recognition, that one of the family had returned.
Stephen decides he’ll sit down, with his back to me, and he just looked over his shoulder for a moment when he says, “I thought you were dead.” He gave me nothing! That was really brave, because most would go for sympathy or emotion, but Stephen has no desire to be liked. He just doesn’t give a fuck!
But for me, it’s brilliant for the scene! Because that’s how my character feels, like, “Is that all I’m going to get?!” It’s a wonderful, wonderful thing we have, that power shift. Stephen’s a joy, a joy.
For a long time the king did not speak. Then, very softly, he said, “I dream of it sometimes. Of Renly’s dying. A green tent, candles, a woman screaming. And blood.” Stannis looked down at his hands. “I was still abed when he died. Your Devan will tell you. He tried to wake me. Dawn was nigh and my lords were waiting, fretting. I should have been ahorse, armored. I knew Renly would attack at break of day. Devan says I thrashed and cried out, but what does it matter? It was a dream. I was in my tent when Renly died, and when I woke my hands were clean.”