Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

The Real Reason Kit Harrington Once Turned Down A Superhero Movie

Prestige television of the 2010s was dominated by a number of shows, but none consistently became appointment TV on the level of the HBO fantasy series "Game of Thrones." The George R.R. Martin adaptation was the reason a lot of people had HBO at all and the live-watching got so intense that you couldn't look at social media without immediately being spoiled. The Red Wedding, the Purple Wedding, Sean Bean getting the Sean Bean treatment, and Daenerys (Emilia Clarke) just setting everybody on fire — even if you hadn't seen a single episode of "Game of Thrones," you still knew.

One of the stand-out characters was Jon Snow, as played by Kit Harrington. If you loved Jon Snow, you rooted for him to rise to power, if you hated Jon Snow, you would chant "you know nothing, Jon Snow" like you were Jean-Luc Picard saying "Shut up, Wesley" on "Star Trek: The Next Generation." For Kit Harrington, Jon Snow was the birth of his career as a bona fide star.

Since "Game of Thrones" started in 2011, Harrington has been courted by franchises like "How to Train Your Dragon" and "Mission Impossible." Now, he's making the leap to the Marvel Cinematic Universe as Dane Whitman in the upcoming film "Eternals."

Considering how long Harrington has been a big name actor, you likely assumed that "Eternals" isn't the first time Harrington was offered a comic book role. Indeed, he's been offered a role like this one before — he just turned it down.

Eternals is both the right place and the right time

It's not hard to guess why an actor like Kit Harrington would be resistant to dipping his toe into an ongoing world like the MCU or the DCEU in the 2010s — he was already completely submerged in the world of "Game of Thrones."

"I won't mention what it was, but yeah, there was one other [comic book movie] that I did turn down a while ago," Kit Harrington explained in an interview with Total Film. "It was a while ago, as well – just because it didn't feel like the right thing at the right time. And I think I was right to. My head was very in the Jon Snow world then."

The final episode of "Game of Thrones," "The Iron Throne," aired over two years ago on May 19, 2019. After years of success and finding itself at the center of the cultural zeitgeist, the final few seasons were plagued by ridicule once the series was no longer following the stories written by George R.R. Martin himself. Given that, it's no surprise Harrington would be keen to move on to a different larger project now — but that's not the reason he gave for accepting a role in "Eternals" now.

"This one felt right to me," he says. "I liked that the character they were offering was not necessarily an Eternal. He was human. I did like that. I felt that I could do something with that, that he came with all these human faults. So it was the character that drew me to it, as well as it being the MCU, and how exciting."

Eternals hits theaters November 5.