Game of Thrones was a mystical journey for both the fans and the cast alike. The show gave the audience some of the most remarkable and inspirational characters over the course of its 10-year-long run. Arya Stark’s sword instructor, Syrio Forel, was definitely one of them. The actor who played the role, Miltos Yerolemou, talked to Collider and revealed how his character inspired people in real life.
Yerolemou talked about going to fan conventions, “I genuinely like these fans. It’s so rare as an actor to really get that kind of feedback. We do what we do, even in theatre, and you don’t even see audiences at the end of shows nowadays. That is quite a phenomenon and quite something to experience when you go to fan conventions, to realize how much it means to people.”
“Because for a long time, I think, especially going through the pandemic that we’ve been through where you look at doctors and nurses and healthcare professionals and people that have kept our society going when all of the rest of us have been locked at home. You realize how important people like that are. And sometimes, I have a real sense of, “Well, I’m only an actor. What is the point of what I do?”, when you realize how important some people are to us literally staying alive.
“But those lines that I spoke, about the God of Death and “not today” — I’ve had Marines tell me that they say before they go on operations. I’ve heard that people facing cancer say it in the mirror every morning. It’s really humbling. And sometimes it’s very difficult for me to hear. But it’s a nice reminder that for some people, [the show] has a profound effect.”
Who’s your favourite character from Game of Thrones? Tell us how they inspired you in the comments below!
Working on a project as big as Game of Thrones is a once in a lifetime experience. The fame that comes with being part of something so big exceeds that of the fortune you inherit from the show. People begin to recognize you by your character and remember you by your contribution. Game of Thrones veteran Miltos Yerolemou left an everlasting mark in the minds of the viewers with his performance as Syrio Forel. Even with his limited time on the show, Arya Stark’s Obi-Wan Kenobi kept the audience hooked till his last scene.
He recently talked to Collider in an interview, about his character and life after Game of Thrones. He said, “I never expected it in my wildest dreams, especially after only being in three episodes of Season 1. I honestly did not expect that my gravestone will say, “Not today,” but with the not crossed out. Now, you can hold me to that. But I really did not expect that to be my reality, but it is. And like I said, I’m thrilled, embarrassed, and humbled by it every single day.”
Yerolemou also talked about watching Game of Thrones spinoffs. He said, “Yeah. Of course, I’m going to be incredibly curious.”
How do you feel about Game of Thrones, now that the show has wrapped up filming 2 years ago? Tell us in the comments below!
Game of Thrones wrapped up filming nearly two years ago and left the fans with several unanswered questions. One of the most prominent ones was what really happened to Syrio Forel? He was last seen fighting Lannister soldiers with a wooden sword, while Arya escaped. But no one knows how the fight ended. After so many years, we might finally have an answer, from the actor Miltos Yerolemou himself!
When asked about the same in an interview with Collider, the actor replied, “It’s a really good question. I’ll say it is a really good question because it has changed a lot over the years. Initially, I knew very much about the fan theories about is he dead? Is he alive? Is he Jaqen H’ghar, are they faceless men?”
“I would never say one thing one way or another, because the whole point, especially while the show was still going on, was that I didn’t want to give anything away, one way or another, because the mythology is what is exciting about a lot of things. And who knows? Certain things happened in the series that never happened in the books. And vice versa.”
“So, there was ambiguity there. But ultimately, each time I answered that question, I would formulate a clearer idea of really what happened. And to me, it makes a lot of sense because I remember asking George, who wrote the episode — Episode 8 in the first season — I remember asking him, “Why don’t you answer the question that everyone has asked since you wrote that chapter in the book? Why don’t you do that?” And he said, “That isn’t what I want to do. That doesn’t serve my narrative purpose.” And that’s all he would say.”
“And I understood it. And yet, now I really understand it because to me, it makes a lot of sense that you don’t get the traumatic ending of Syrio, because in the books Arya remembers his words. It’s like the training is kept alive, in the same way … I keep going back to Star Wars. The presence of Obi-Wan Kenobi is still there because he’s kind of still there. No one really ever dies. That kind of thing.”
He continued, “It’s not mystical in the same way as Star Wars. But the resonance and the echo of the words, the mantra, the training is alive in her head. And I think the ambiguity allows that to exist. And if she’d seen him cut down, I think it wouldn’t have the same effect on her, or it would be too traumatic for it to live on in her head in the same way.
So, as a narrative device, I think it’s brilliant. And I think that is the reason why George did it. And I think that is the reason why, ultimately, Syrio Forel sacrifices himself to save this girl he barely knows. That’s also very poetic. And also, there aren’t that many good guys in Game of Thrones, so you got to have at least a couple.”
Even though it is not a clear answer, he hints vaguely that Syrio didn’t survive the battle. What do you think happened to Syrio? Tell us in the comments below!
Arya Stark was undoubtedly one of the finest warriors on Game of Thrones. Her use of weaponry was unmatched, and she could take down foes much bigger in size than herself. It all started way back in season 1 when Ned Stark employed Syrio Forel to give her ‘dancing’ lessons. The actor who played Syrio Forel, Miltos Yerolemou, recently talked to Collider about his experience on the set. He also revealed that Maisie Williams, who played Arya Stark, had grown quite fond of the lessons. She really missed them in the second season of the show.
He said, “Even though we had stunt doubles who were brilliant at what they did, they never got a chance to film any of the stuff because … And Maisie, herself, is a dancer — as you can see as her fighting develops through the show. All of that is her because she’s a natural. And so, the two of us just were in our element. We relished that. In fact, I remember Maisie saying to me when she was filming Season 2 — I think I met her at a convention and she said, “I really miss doing the sword fighting,” because I think in Season 2 she didn’t get to do hardly any. And she was like, “I really, really miss it.”
He continued, “It was her very first job that she’d ever done. She was 13 years old. She was still at school. Maisie had an amazing mom that read her the bits that she couldn’t read because those bits were quite adult. She had a really supportive mother. And the team around her really looked after her.”
What do you think of Maisie’s sword fighting skills? Tell us in the comments below!