After Dying 23 Times On Screen, Sean Bean Starts Rejecting Roles Where His Character Dies
Source: The Sun | Photo: The Sun

After Dying 23 Times On Screen, Sean Bean Starts Rejecting Roles Where His Character Dies

You probably know Sean Bean as the actor who dies in every movie or TV series he plays in. Ned Stark in The Game of Thrones? Dead. Boromir in The Lord of the Rings? Dead. Alec in GoldenEye? Dead. And the list goes on – but not anymore. The actor who died a whole 23 times on screen says he won’t be taking up any more roles where the character he plays dies.

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After 35 years in the business, Sean Bean has had enough of being bumped off — and has taken the brave career move of rejecting roles that see him killed.

Sean, 61, said: “I’ve turned down stuff. I’ve said, ‘They know my character’s going to die because I’m in it!’

“I just had to cut that out and start surviving, otherwise it was all a bit predictable. I did do one job and they said, ‘We’re going to kill you’, and I was like, ‘Oh no!’ and then they said, ‘Well, can we injure you badly?’ and I was like, ‘OK, so long as I stay alive this time’.

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“I’ve played a lot of baddies, they were great but they weren’t very fulfilling — and I always died.”




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Sean used to be at ease with playing characters who end up six feet under, until he landed the plum part of heroic Ned Stark in Game Of Thrones. Ned was executed in the penultimate episode of the first series, a ten-parter, in 2011.

The fantasy drama went on to become a global hit with a further seven seasons, transforming Sean’s little-known colleagues into megastars . . .  as he watched from home.

Sean said: “I’d read the Game Of Thrones books and they said to me, ‘You do die in this, but it’s near the end of the series’. And I was like, ‘Yeah, yeah, fair enough“.

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“So they made it very clear at the time I was going to die, and I thought, ‘I don’t want to get stuck in one of these series that lasts seven years’.

“But I wish I’d have got stuck now! But it was very clear what (GoT author) George RR Martin wanted to happen to Ned — and it did.”

His characters’ tendency to get bumped off even sparked a social media campaign “Don’t kill Sean Bean” in 2014.

So it was a relief when he was offered the role of Douglas Bennett in the upcoming BBC1 war drama World On Fire — as the character lives.

He said: “I survive in World On Fire, I’m at home in Manchester and I’m safe.”

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