Isaac Hempstead-Wright is an English actor. Beginning his professional acting career at the age of eleven, Hempstead-Wright is best known for his role as Bran Stark on the HBO series Game of Thrones, which earned him a Young Artist Award nomination as Best Young Supporting Actor in a TV Series. Isaac Hempstead-Wright had no interest in acting until he joined a drama club to get out of playing football on Saturday mornings during the cold months of the year. Hempstead-Wright started acting in commercials, and studied acting at the Kent Youth Theatre in Canterbury, England. He made it his screen debut in the horror film, The Awakening. But, the big break came when he was cast as Bran Stark on Game of Thrones, he was part of the initial starring cast and remains a member of the starring cast for the second, third, and fourth seasons which earned him two Screen Actors Guild Awards nominations as Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in Drama Series at the 18th and 20th Screen Actors ... Read More
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Written by: · Comments: Comments Off on How school decision changed the life of Game of Thrones superstar · Category: article, Game of Thrones, Interview

How Isaac Hempstead-Wright now enjoys global fame

Keen to avoid playing football on a cold winter’s day at his school in Faversham, Isaac Hempstead-Wright made a decision which would change his life forever.

Choosing, instead, to attend drama club, it would put him on a path to stardom which, on Monday, saw him part of the return of a global phenomenon.

Because Isaac – who turned just 15 on Wednesday – is one of the key characters in fantasy TV drama Game of Thrones.

The TV series has captured the imagination of millions around the world since it launched in 2011.

Such was the demand, when the first episode of the fourth series debuted on Monday it was first shown at 2am in the morning, to coincide with its launch in the US, just so everyone could watch it at the same time.

But it was Monday night when fans who didn’t want to get up quite so early were able to finally settle down and welcome it back to its home on Sky Atlantic.

And among those returning was Bran Stark – the character portrayed by the teenager.

What’s more, he’s now a global commodity with jobs flooding in.

His path to stardom, however, was rather more modest and one which will give plenty of youngsters attending local drama clubs, the belief that they too could one day make it big.

After being bitten by the acting bug at school, he enrolled with the Kent Youth Theatre, based in Chilham.

From there, he landed a part in the horror flick The Awakening, alongside Imelda Staunton, Dominic West and Rebecca Hall.

It was that which saw him attract the attention of the makers of Game of Thrones.

Not that it was ideal viewing for a 12-year-old.

The series is renowned for its levels of sex, violence and bad language, alongside the gripping storylines.

Since making the role his, Isaac’s career has not stopped. Last year he appeared with Eric Bana and Jim Broadbent in crime thriller Close Circuit.

Now he is the voice of lead character Egg in the animated The Boxtrolls, which also features Shaun of the Dead stars Simon Pegg and Nick Frost. Plus he appears as Octavius in Caesar, alongside Maidstone’s Mackenzie Crook.

Both titles are in post-production and due for release this year.

But, as usual, with stardom comes the difficulties. Isaac’s grammar school is, for example, keen to keep tight-lipped about their famous pupil.

One member of staff told us: “He has done well, but we are not allowed to talk about him, sorry.”

However, in an interview, the young actor explained how he combined his studies and career.

He explained: “I’ve had lots of time off…but my school has been really supportive. They prepare work for me which I do with a tutor or my mum. It works well, so far.”

He has already earned two Screen Actors Guild Awards nominations for ‘outstanding performance by an ensemble in a drama series’ and it seems likely they will not be his first and last. But he reamins determined to get a good education first.

Quoted in another interview, he said: “I’m quite focused on school. I’d like to go to university and maybe do a PhD in something. But I think definitely I’d like to continue with the acting.

“It’s so much fun — you interact as an adult, and you get to have these experiences. I suppose it really accelerates your maturity. It’s also really fun to hang out.”

He added of his academic interest: “Some kind of science, particularly neuroscience. Or I’d like to go into classical piano.”

His talent was spotted early too.

In 2009, a review of his work at the Kent Youth Theatre said Isaac was out to “test the water with his individual routine he had prepared and practiced the week before. All that can be said about Isaac is watch this space because his talent holds no bounds”.

Boss at Kent Youth Theatre, Richard Andrews, added: “Isaac’s three-minute stand up performance about his mother was brilliant.

“The moment he arrived with us, all the girls liked him. He has great charisma.

“We were taking him to stage auditions almost immediately because he is a born natural.

“He remembers his lines and knows how to deliver them. I am so delighted we have helped kick start his career.”

Despite him saving up his Game of Thrones salary to get through university, Isaac may yet end up on the other side of the camera.

He said: “It is pretty incredible getting paid to have all this fun, but to be honest, my mum doesn’t really like me spending my money, because she wants me to save it for university funds. Luckily though, she did let me buy a few things, the first of which was a Canon HV30 video camera and some editing software so I could start making my own films.”


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