Interviews

Peter Dinklage: The smooth operator

By Zaki JufriMovies - 30 May 2014 12:00 AM | Updated 02 June 2014

Peter Dinklage: The smooth operator

From the world of the ‘X-Men: Days of Future Past’ where mutants with supernatural abilities fight each other and with humanity, to the blood-soaked and sex-drenched plots of TV series ‘Game of Thrones’, it is without irony that the main antagonist for both are small in stature at 1.35m tall.

And the man playing both, Peter Dinklage, who was in Singapore recently to promote the ‘X-Men’ movie with some of the cast, explained why he is drawn to these characters: “There has to be nuance in the character or else it doesn’t interest me. If it’s too one-dimensional, there is nothing for me to grab on to.”

tyrion
Peter Dinklage as Tyrion Lannister in 'Game of Thrones'

Indeed, his portrayal of the sardonic, witty and chronically misunderstood Tyrion Lannister in ‘Game of Thrones’ is so multifaceted and captivating that it garnered him an Emmy and a Golden Globe award in 2011.

The 44-year-old actor is the most successful cast member, going by the four awards and 10 nominations he has received at the Emmy, Golden Globes and Screen Actors Guild awards. 

Dinklage, who was born in New Jersey, US, was a familiar face in indie fare and broke into pop culture’s consciousness in the film ‘The Station Agent’ in 2003, playing a loner. The film won the Audience Award at the Sundance Film Festival that year. 

In 2007, he was part of an ensemble cast bumbling around in the dark British comedy ‘Death at a Funeral’, and the next year, he played the dwarf Trumpkin in ‘Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian’.

HBO’s game-changing fantasy drama series then swept him into the limelight.

In ‘Days of Future Past’, Dinklage plays Dr Bolivar Trask. Marvel fans know the scientist as the creator an army of menacing robots called Sentinels, designed to guard humanity against X-Men mutants.

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Peter Dinklage in a scene from 'X-Men: Days of Future Past'. Photo: 20th Century Fox

A COMPLICATED VILLAIN

Scriptwriter Simon Kinberg said in an interview with Empire magazine that the filmmakers wanted a villain that was complicated and towards whom audiences would still be sympathetic. 

Kinberg said: “Like in ‘Game Of Thrones’, he (Dinklage) can do the most dastardly things, but everyone loves him more than any other character.”   

In his interview with inSing, Dinklage’s take on baddies is this: “I don’t think any of the great villains consider themselves villains. It’s a matter of perspective.”

“With Bolivar Trask, he’s working more within the confines of society and what he is proposing is rational. Trask is quite the smooth operator – he’s exploiting people’s fears, their need for self-preservation and he’s every successful.” 

He quipped: “He would be the hero if the mutants were not the heroes in the movie.”

The movie assembles the cast from the first trilogy as well, with a storyline that time travels from the present to the 1970s.

ROOTED IN REALITY

Like ‘X-Men: First Class’ (2011) before it, ‘Days of Future Past’ is rooted in reality, referencing historical events such as the Paris Peace Accords in 1973 and the assassination of US President John F Kennedy.

Dinklage with director Bryan Singer. Photo: 20th Century Fox

Dinklage said the movie works mainly because it keeps its emotional reality rooted in the familiar struggles of its characters through familiar events. 

“It harkens back to its source material,” he said. “The ‘X-Men’ comic books were so ahead of their time. The books have always used realistic events, sometimes with a wink, sometimes with a serious agenda. I think most comic books are a metaphor of how we live our lives; how people want to be the people they want or not want to be.

“But this movie is much more complicated because some of these mutants have powers that they’re ashamed of. I think that is more realistic as it relates to most of us – the feeling about being an outsider.”

So says the outsider who is probably the coolest guy on the planet. 

‘X-Men: Days of Future Past’ is now showing in cinemas

 

Read related articles:

‘X-Men: Days of Future Past’: Flying at full force 

'X-Men: Days of Future Past' takes over Singapore box office

Hugh Jackman: A young worry wart

Living the dream: Fan Bingbing high on ‘X-Men’, Hugh Jackman

 

 

 

X-Men Days of Future Past

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X-Men: Days Of Future Past
  • X-Men: Days Of Future Past

    (2014)
  • Rated
    PG13 /
    Genre
    Action, Adventure, Fantasy
  • Language
    Eng
  • (7 Reviews)