Tom Cullen admitted he was starstruck when his childhood idol, Mark Hamill, appeared on set for the primary time.
The “Star Wars” icon and BAFTA-winning voice of The Joker, 67, goes from lightsaber to sword in Season 2 of Historical past Channel’s drama collection “Knightfall.” The actor performs Talus, a battle-hardened Knight Templar veteran of the Crusades, who survived captivity for 10 years and is tasked with coaching and new initiates to the Order.
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Cullen of “Downton Abbey” and “Gunpowder” fame stars as headstrong Templar Knight Landry who will embark on a journey that explores the darkish, brutal aspect of the 14th century.
“My youthful brother is on ‘Knightfall’ as nicely this season, and we grew up obsessive about ‘Star Wars,’” Cullen advised Fox Information. “So it was an actual deal with for us and everybody who set to work with him as a result of I believe that Mark is so interwoven into a number of childhoods. However the factor about Mark is as quickly as he arrives on set, he’s simply essentially the most humble and hardworking man. He’s a lot his character within the present that you simply sort of simply overlook who Mark is and also you simply see his wonderful character. And it was a pleasure to work with him. He’s nice within the present.”
The 33-year-old revealed that the Hollywood star was extremely humble and simply approachable whereas filming the gritty present.
“It was so stunning,” gushed Cullen. “You all the time have a lot worry when somebody is that well-known, that they may flip up and never be the nicest folks, however he couldn’t be a lovelier man and he’s turn out to be a extremely good good friend…. And there’s numerous younger actors on the present. A few of them, it’s their first… job. And he sort of simply got here in and took everybody below [his] wing and would inform tales. It was a extremely particular expertise.”
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Cullen has loads of causes to have a good time, apart from the chance to work alongside Hamill on a present he stars in. “Knightfall” first premiered in December 2017, only a few months after Season 7 of HBO’s wildly fashionable fantasy drama “Recreation of Thrones” concluded on August 27 of that 12 months. A number of TV critics identified “Knightfall” was the best option to fill the void.
However Cullen warns each reveals are fully totally different and it wouldn’t be honest to check one with the opposite.
“I imply, ‘Recreation of Thrones’ is wonderful,” mentioned Cullen. “I’ve many mates in it and I like watching it. So, it’s not a foul factor to be in comparison with ‘Recreation of Thrones,’ however we’re a unique present, and there are many similarities, I suppose. However we’re attempting to do our personal factor. I’d say if you happen to like ‘Recreation of Thrones,’ you must positively tune in. And if you happen to like ‘Vikings,’ which can also be on Historical past — it’s a tremendous present as nicely. We’re sort of all sitting in that ballpark, however attempting to chop out our personal little nook in it.”
Cullen has an in depth connection to “Recreation of Thrones.” His good pal is Equipment Harington, who famously performs Jon Snow. The 2 actors have recognized one another since drama college and, in 2017, co-starred within the historic miniseries “Gunpowder.” Cullen shared there’s one reminiscence of his time attending the Central College of Speech and Drama in London alongside Harington, 32, that also stands out to him.
“I got here from Wales, which is a extremely small nation subsequent to England,” he defined. “I grew up in rural Wales and so I used to be instantly in London and it was very thrilling. And I had a girlfriend, however we sort of broke up as quickly as we bought to London. I used to be completely heartbroken. Equipment came visiting to my home and took me out. And I didn’t know him in any respect. We bought very drunk and he sorted me. In order that’s my first reminiscence of Equipment.”
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However lately the pair have been conserving busy with their reveals. And Cullen, particularly, needed to embark on a no-nonsense coaching routine that concerned sporting a 50-pound costume for hours to get in form and battle like a knight.
“It’s tremendous intense,” mentioned Cullen. “… The Knights Templar themselves, they used to coach about six, seven hours a day. After which the remainder of the time they’d pray. That was their life. It was sort of a mixture of warrior and monk. … However for us, the coaching was very a lot about having the ability to carry the heavy weight of the costume and to bodily get by means of the tough schedule. It’s each day for seven months in freezing chilly climate and boiling sizzling climate. I broke my toes on the primary two days.”
“I are inclined to work each day, practically in each scene,” continued Cullen. “So the instances that I’ve to study the battle scenes are sometimes on my lunch breaks or on weekends. Simply snap instances. And you then’re instantly in battle with 100 folks round you swinging swords. You simply have to essentially dive in and go for it. It may be fairly scary. You do get some wacks since you don’t all the time bear in mind the choreography. Typically it’s actual. And that’s in all probability the toughest half, nevertheless it’s additionally essentially the most enjoyable as nicely.”
Whereas “Knightfall” takes place a whole bunch of years in the past, Cullen insisted the medieval interval has loads of classes for audiences in 2019. And because the story unfolds, issues will solely turn out to be extra stunning.
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“I believe the medieval interval, on the whole, is a extremely fascinating time period as a result of I believe that in some ways, that was the delivery of our fashionable society,” mentioned Cullen. “For instance, the Knights Templar, who’re the centerpiece of ‘Knightfall,’ they arrange the primary banking system they usually turned sort of the world’s first conglomerate, which is a little bit of historical past that I didn’t know earlier than the beginning this present. And I believe that we really feel the historical past of that interval nonetheless vibrating on the planet that we reside in in the present day.”
“Knightfall” premieres March 25 at 10 p.m. on the Historical past Channel.