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Maltese-born actor scores role on Game of Thrones

Joseph Gatt is being touted for the role of a war chief in the popular fantasy television series.

Teodor Reljic
21 August 2013, 12:00am
Joseph Gatt will reportedly be playing Styr, Magnar of Thenn during season four of the internationally beloved fantasy series Game of Thrones. Photo by Diana Ragland.
Joseph Gatt will reportedly be playing Styr, Magnar of Thenn during season four of the internationally beloved fantasy series Game of Thrones. Photo by Diana Ragland.

The Maltese-born actor Joseph Gatt has been added to the cast of the hugely popular HBO television series Game of Thrones - the first season of which was partly filmed in Malta in 2010.

According to Gatt's agency (as well as his Internet Movie Database listing), the actor will reportedly take on the role of Styr, Magnar of Thenn, in the fourth season of the series, set to premiere during the first half of 2014.

In A Song of Ice and Fire - the book series by George RR Martin on which Game of Thrones is based - Styr is a 'wildling' war chief who leads an attack on Castle Black, an outpost populated by some of the show's key protagonists.

Though it remains to be seen how much of the original character will survive in the transition from the book to film, it's safe to say that the showrunners will be sticking to Styr's physical appearance, if Gatt is indeed selected for that particular role.

The character is described as being tall, imposing and entirely hairless - features entirely synonymous with Gatt's own appearance and screen presence.

If the rumours are true, Gatt will be shooting his scenes in Iceland, which is standard procedure for the show, as all the scenes featuring the location in question - the dreaded, snow-capped 'Wall' - have been filmed there so far.

Born to Maltese parents and raised in London, Joseph Gatt - who now lives in Los Angeles - has been quietly carving out a niche for himself as a powerful and quirky presence in cinema, television and even video games. He has appeared in blockbuster films Star Trek Into Darkness (as Science Officer 0718) and Thor (as the Frost Giant Grundroth), while also playing fan-favourite character The Albino on the television series Banshee.

His credits also include voiceover and motion-capture work in a number of popular video games, among them Star Wars: The Old Republic, God of War and Skyrim.

Having got his start on the West End stage in London, Gatt appeared in a Culver-Stockton College (Missouri) production of Tennessee Williams's classic drama A Streetcar Named Desire in 2011.

In an exclusive interview with MaltaToday, Gatt reminisced about his childhood summers spent in Malta, while also attributing his passion and perseverance to his 'Maltese' temperament.

"I'm convinced that if I wasn't Maltese and didn't have my iron will, I wouldn't be here, both in my current life position and just here on this earth. My life was tough before I ever became an actor, and acting isn't exactly the easiest profession in existence. There were times earlier in my career and life when I had to drag myself back up out of the dirt - so many times after being beaten down, both physically and emotionally, that I felt like the Maltese Islands during the Second World War! So thank you to my parents and my Maltese genes for my survival," Gatt told MaltaToday last June.

Read our exclusive interview with Joseph Gatt.

Teodor Reljic is MaltaToday's culture editor and film critic. He joined t...
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