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Chatting up Natalie Dormer about 'The Fades,' 'Game of Thrones,' Madonna


February 02, 2012|By Curt Wagner | RedEye

With “Game of Thrones,” you’ve signed on to the biggest craze in the States, I think, probably around the world.
Well, again, all I can say is “Thrones” is just like “The Fades,” in so far as the quality is just there in the script, immediately, before you’ve done anything. When you’re just sitting down reading it, the quality just glares at you from the page.

And I kind of kept away from the show when I was taking the meetings. I wasn't acquainted with the show before I went in to meet the delightful Mr. [David] Benioff and [D.B.] Weiss [exec producers].

And I’m kind of glad I didn't, actually, because I think I would have been scared off [laughs], because it was so awesome when I watched it.

And I’m really, really proud to be a part of the “Thrones” family now. I just finished second series before Christmas and I’ll be doing third series in the summer. And I think, again, it’s really bravely written. It’s got a phenomenal cast, and, yeah, it’s a great privilege to be a part of the gang, and it’s a big gang.

It’s a huge gang, yeah.
It’s a huge gang. But I have to tell you it’s a really well supported, frankly, family. It really is, so it’s cool. I’m very proud.

One of your “Fades” castmates is in this, too.
Joe Dempsie [who plays John in “The Fades” and Gendry in “GOT”], yeah.

Tell me about your character, Margaery Tyrell, as much as you can say. It’s kind of weird, because saying anything, almost like with Sarah, saying anything is sort of a spoiler I think.
Yeah. Well, to be perfectly honest, I would have to agree with you there. So maybe I’ll ease off on that. [Laughs.] It’s really interesting, because both shows have this amazing cult following, you know? ... It’s kind of intriguing to be opened up to the sci-fi, super horror or fantasy communities and seeing just how dedicated they are. I’ve never come across fans, like cult fans to these cult shows. They're just so supportive and they’re so dedicated. And, as an actor, you really feel supported and you want to really push yourself, because there’s just so much enthusiasm.

I heard you’re a good fencer and I was wondering if Margaery is ever going to take up a sword.
Oh, well, you know [laughs], I have a few seasons in me. You never know what's going to happen. [Laughs.] But Loras, the Knight of Flowers, my brother, is meant to be the greatest night throughout the Seven Kingdoms, so maybe she picked up a little bit, who knows? [Laughs.] We’ll have to wait and see, won't we?

Give us a tease, a non-spoilery tease about Season 2, even if it’s just from your experience and what you saw.
Oh, a tease. [Laughs.] It’s war. It’s war and it’s serious. It’s the same with “The Fades,” the battle is on, life and death. The battle is coming, so it’s serious now. [Laughs.]

And you’re looking forward to more seasons, right?
Absolutely. Absolutely. Margaery really comes into her own in series [seasons] 3 and 4.

All right. Finally I wanted to ask you about “W.E.” You play the queen mum when she was young, right? How was that experience?
Yeah, that's right. It was a really interesting experience. I just think in all stories there are two sides to every story and the Wallis Simpson story needed to be done and it was kind of fitting that a woman as strong and passionate as Madonna should do it. It was kind of fascinating to look at another part of our native history. I don't know if it’s because of the Kate and Will’s marriage last year, but as you were saying you guys stateside [watched] as we did here there seems to be like this renaissance of interest in our royal family again. So it’s kind of interesting looking back a couple of generations and revisiting some of their stories. Yeah, interesting project.

Do you ever get a little nervous playing someone so revered who was real in history?
Definitely. But it was the same with the Queen Mother, it was the same with Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon as it was with Anne Boleyn, I read a stack of books. In the case of “W.E.,” Madonna actually pushed three biographies of Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon over the table and said, “Read.”

She did that with Andrea Riseborough and with James D’Arcy, all of us were told to read, because she knew everything. She’d read every book for the last decade or whatever, because she’d been so fascinated by the story, hence her obsession.

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