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It was Matt Smith’s idea to beat the soldier at Harrenhal, says director Geeta Patel

Daemon is troubled and looking for a fight at Harrenhal, and Matt Smith is embodying the character well.



House of the Dragon
Credits: Ollie Upton/HBO

House of the Dragon season 2 episode 3 was every bit as exciting as it was poised to be. With Criston Cole as the Hand of the King and Daemon flying off to claim Harrenhal, the pieces of the bigger puzzle are finally coming together. The decisive war is just around the corner as the Greens and the Blacks assess their situation and ready themselves for a match to death.

The director of the third episode Geeta Patel had a lot of thoughts brewing in her head that eventually led to making this episode wondrous.

Geeta Patel sheds light on Daemon’s Mindset at Harrenhal

House of the Dragon

Credits: Ollie Upton/HBO

In an interview with Screenrant, Geeta Patel shared some behind-the-scenes aspects that were implemented while filming the episode. For instance, the first aspect she focused on was doing justice to the grandeur of the Harrenhal castle. This is the first time we actually see the castle without the flames and ashes of death.

Moreover, Daemon’s state of mind while claiming Harrehal is somewhat dicey since he’s in a very emotional state. He lands at Harrenhal expecting battle and resistance but Lord Strong kneels before him without a second thought. To this, Patel reveals,

Daemon is a guy who just broke up with his wife. She’s called him every name you could think of, and he’s drinking; he’s angry. He wants to cut somebody, or maybe he wants to cut himself. He’s wasted, and the dragon’s wasted, so we called it the “Drunken Dragon” scene, and we worked with visual effects to create the movement and the ambiance so that it feels like it is that kind of night. He’s drunk and driving through a storm.

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07/14/2024 10:47 pm GMT

Matt Smith went off script to beat the soldier at Harrenhal


Credits: Max

Daemon arrives at Harrenhal looking for a fight. He’s all charged up on emotions and adrenaline that urge him to fight and keep his guard up. Naturally, he’s disappointed when he sees no soldier on duty to protect the castle. But when that one guard asks him to halt in the corridor, Daemon loses it and beats him to get his anger out. Patel reveals that this was not originally in the script. She said,

Matt did it, then he came up to me and goes, “I just want to beat the hell out of that guy.” And I said, “Okay, I want you to.” He said, “That’s me. That’s Daemon.” We didn’t have a lot of time as usual, so we did it the way it was scripted, but then we did it this way as well. And it wasn’t just, “Beat the guy up.” It was, “Feel everything you want to feel. Where you came from.” He just kept going, and that’s what made the cut in the end.

Being an incredibly perceptive and dedicated actor, Matt Smith has often improvised to get the best out of the character in a particular scene. This is exactly what he did here as well. Daemon is angry at Rhaenyra and himself for everything he has done so far. It will be extremely interesting to see how his character develops in the upcoming episodes of House of the Dragon season 2.

Also Read: We’ll feel an embarrassing relatability to Criston Cole by end of Season 2, says director Geeta Patel

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Vidhi has been an entertainment writer for the past 4 years. She has a knack for identifying subtleties and intricacies of movies and television shows that can add a new dimension to her content. Having watched Game of Thrones and House of the Dragon countless times, she knows most details by heart and thrives in trivia contests related to the same!


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