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July 24, 2013

‘Game of Thrones’ Kit Harington teases ‘powerful’ Season 4

Posted in: Comic-Con,TV

Kit Harington, photographed in March 2013, stars in HBO's fantasy series "Game of Thrones," in which he plays Jon Snow. (Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times)

Kit Harington as Jon Snow in the "Game of Thrones" Season 3 premiere. (Helen Sloan / HBO)

Kit Harington, left, Richard Madden, Sean Bean and Alfie Allen in "Game of Thrones." (Helen Sloan / HBO)

Isaac Hempstead-Wright, left, as Bran Stark and Kit Harington as Jon Snow in "Game of Thrones." (Helen Sloan / HBO)

Kit Harington as Jon Snow, left, Isaac Hempstead-Wright as Bran Stark and Richard Madden as Robb Stark in "Game of Thrones." (Helen Sloan / HBO)

Nickolaj Coster-Waldau as Jaime Lannister, left, and Kit Harington as Jon Snow in "Game of Thrones." (Helen Sloan / HBO)

Kit Harington and John Bradley play Brothers of the Night's Watch in "Game of Thrones." (Helen Sloan / HBO)

Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, left, Kit Harington and Lena Headey applaud their fans at HBO's "Game of Thrones" panel at Comic-Con International in San Diego in July 2011. (Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times)

Kit Harington, left, Lena Headey and Peter Dinklage answer fans' questions during HBO's "Game of Thrones" panel at Comic-Con International in San Diego in July 2011. (Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times)

Michelle Fairley, left, John Bradley, Kit Harington, Rose Leslie, Emilia Clarke, and Nikolaj Coster-Waldau arrive at the Hollywood premiere of "Game Of Thrones" Season 3 at TCL Chinese Theatre on March 18, 2013. (Kevin Winter / Getty Images)

Kit Harington, Maisie Williams and Rose Leslie attend the "Game of Thrones" exhibition in New York City on March 27, 2013. (Mike Coppola / Getty Images)

Kit Harington, left, Maisie Williams, Rose Leslie, Natalie Dormer, Sophie Turner and John Bradley attend the "Game of Thrones" exhibition in New York City on March 27, 2013. (Mike Coppola / Getty Images)

Kit Harington, photographed in March 2013, stars in HBO's fantasy series "Game of Thrones," in which he plays Jon Snow. (Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times)

Kit Harington, photographed in March 2013, stars in HBO's fantasy series "Game of Thrones," in which he plays Jon Snow. (Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times)

Kit Harington, photographed in March 2013, stars in HBO's fantasy series "Game of Thrones," in which he plays Jon Snow. (Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times)

“Game of Thrones” fans are in for an epic upcoming season of HBO’s lavish series, according to ensemble star Kit Harington, who plays Jon Snow, a sworn brother of the Night’s Watch.

Speaking about Season 4 with Hero Complex at Comic-Con, Harington offered a glimpse at the premium channel’s adaptation of  George R.R. Martin’s “A Song of Ice and Fire” book series.

Viewers last saw Jon betraying the Wildlings, the “free folk”  he was embedded with north of the realm’s towering Wall. After he joined them on a raid over the icy Wall in the direction of Castle Black, his refusal to kill a horse breeder led the Wildling raiders to question his allegiance to their cause. During the betrayal, Jon also broke the heart of a feisty Wildling woman named Ygritte (Rose Leslie)  in order to fulfill the larger part of the oath that calls for protecting the realm. Ygritte also happened to be his first lady love, with whom he broke the abstinence clause of the Watch’s oath.

Kit Harington

“Game of Thrones” actor Kit Harington attends Entertainment Weekly’s Comic-Con party at Float at Hard Rock Hotel San Diego on July 20. ( Jason Merritt/Getty Images)

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Harington said that viewers wouldn’t necessarily be seeing more of his character because the series sustains one of the largest ensemble casts in TV history. The show’s creators David Benioff and D.B. Weiss infamously slashed several members of that enormous cast in their adaptation of Martin’s “Red Wedding” in the penultimate episode of Season 3, “The Rains of Castamere.” The bloody twist that sees the end of several members of Jon’s family practically reboots the narrative. Harington also teased to major arcs in store for Jon Snow.

“There are some really important things that happen for my character this season,” he teased.

Things like facing heartbreak over leaving Ygritte and skepticism from other brothers of the Night’s Watch who also doubt his loyalty, all while he adjusts to his celibate, honor-bound life back on the Wall. It should be noted that Season 4 is expected to pull material from the latter half of Martin’s third book in the series, “A Storm of Swords.”

“I’ve just finished reading [the script] and I genuinely think it’s my favorite one so far,” Harington said.  “And that sounds like I’m pulling your leg. I’m not. I’m not doing the actor thing of saying ‘each season is brilliant’ because I have to. I think it’s a really powerful season. It’s very action-filled. Last season was a big impact season, this season is very action-packed. On paper it looks incredible, whether we can pull it off, who … knows!”

Harington says he immersed himself in Martin’s fantasy series after he landed the role of Jon, voraciously reading the first four books in the series.

“I now need to catch up myself, as we’re catching up to where I’ve read to in the books,” he said. “We’re on a whole new journey now. There’s a big divide in the books. And if we get to Season 5, it will all get even more complicated. So I’m enjoying the journey.”

In an interview with Hero Complex in June, Harington said that he got ahead of himself in the books.

“I devoured them, really,” he said. “I stopped because I got way too far ahead of myself. He becomes an older, different person, and I had to really reel back my mind for Season 1, because he’s just this young chap, and none of that world has hit him yet.”

Jon’s identity has remained intertwined with the fact that his character is introduced as the illegitimate son of the honorable (and late) Ned Stark, the one-time Lord of Winterfell. That fact made it difficult for him to adjust to his new role in the Night’s Watch. But his time at Castle Black poises Jon to play an increasingly important role in Martin’s series. Without spoiling anything for fans who haven’t read the books, suffice it to say that Jon’s actions alter the political landscape of Westeros in major ways.

FULL COVERAGE: San Diego Comic-Con 2013

“What I found tough with Jon for the first two seasons is this huge sense of honor, and that he’s such a goodie,” Harington said in the interview. “He’s quite an emotional young chap, but he’s always doing the right thing. Something changes in him when he realizes the world isn’t always good, and his father died because there are bad people out there, and sometimes you have to rebel a bit.”

His character is absent in Martin’s fourth book, “A Feast for Crows,” but resurfaces in the fifth book, “A Dance With Dragons.” Martin has yet to complete the final two books in the series, titled “The Winds of Winter” and “A Dream of Spring,” respectively.

Harington is currently filming Paul W.S. Anderson’s action-drama “Pompeii,” costarring Kiefer Sutherland and Jared Harris. He’ll next appear alongside Jeff Bridges and Julianne Moore in this fall’s “Seventh Son” and has lent his voice to the role of Eret in “How to Train Your Dragon 2,” out in June 2014.

Season 4 of “Game of Thrones” airs on HBO in 2014.

– Nardine Saad | @NardineSaad | Google+

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