Game of Thrones star was nervous to play Marvel's Inhumans villain
Plus, watch the new Comic-Con trailer
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Ramsay Bolton may be dead, but Game of Thrones alum Iwan Rheon will bring to life another polarizing villain this fall on Marvel’s Inhumans — though, as the actor revealed at Comic-Con on Thursday, it was a role he was initially hesitant to take.
“My fear was I’d be doing the same thing again,” Rheon says. “It’s that fear of being typecast and you just end up repeating yourself, but as we discussed it more and more, I realized that wasn’t at all what we were trying to create with the show.”
The new drama explores the never-before-told epic adventure of the royal family, headed up by Black Bolt (Anson Mount), the enigmatic, commanding King of the Inhumans, who has a voice so powerful that the slightest whisper can destroy a city. On the show, Inhumans are loyal to Bolt, but maybe not happy with the way things are being run, which is where Rheon’s Maximus comes in.
“[He’s this] young man who went through terrigenesis and he became nothing,” Rheon explains. “In this society, which is all about what power you have, he’s the lowest of low. The only reason he’s not working down in the mines is because he’s the brother of the king — even though he feels like he’d be a much better king — and he’s a man of the people.”
Using that to his advantage, Maximus is quick to usurp his brother’s power, forcing the royal family to go on the run to Hawaii, where they have surprising interactions with the lush world and humanity around them. “[We] try to show the side of him that he’s trying to genuinely change the world and try to help out the people who he believes are living in terrible conditions in the caste system,” Rheon says, noting this is where the tension between the brothers comes in. “He believes his brother is not doing anything, so he believes he has to do something himself. He’s perhaps more of an antagonist than a villain. It’s just two opposing ideas. He’s a passionate politician who wants to change things for the better for the people — and maybe for himself.”
“In a way, he’s a revolutionary and a forward thinker,” Rheon continues. “He genuinely thinks he can change the world for the people. He’s ruthless. He believes that in order to make this happen, these are the things he has to do. He loves his family, they’re the only family he has, it’s a lonely world, but his belief in what he’s doing, he thinks it’s right. He’s just trying to stop suffering. The costs of the decisions that he makes really starts to corrupt him. It’s a very Shakespearean type of story.”
As long as Maximus doesn’t have a penchant for cutting off, ahem, body parts, then this role should be different enough. But the royal family maybe better learn from Rickon’s mistake and, you know, zig-zag.
Marvel’s Inhumans will first debut in IMAX on Sept. 1 before premiering on ABC on Friday, Sept. 29 at 8 p.m. ET. Watch the new trailer above, and get more scoop on Inhumans here. Watch the new Comic-Con trailer for the show above.