Isaac Hempstead Wright, who plays Bran Stark on Game of Thrones, talked to the makinggameofthrones.com about playing the Three-eyed Raven on the show and whether there is anything left of the old Bran Stark we saw in the past seasons. Here is an excerpt from the interview:
HBO: How has the dynamic changed between the siblings?
Isaac Hempstead Wright: I think it’s most shocking for Sansa and Arya to see what Bran is like, because they still have fundamentally the same character traits as they did when they were young: Arya is this spunky, fierce girl, and Sansa is this diplomatic lady. But Bran has definitely become somebody they wouldn’t recognize otherwise.
HBO: Can Arya understand Bran on a different level than Sansa?
Isaac Hempstead Wright: Arya was a tomboy, so she certainly could relate more to Bran in that way. And now, it’s easier for Arya to believe what happened to him, because she’s seen that weird side of the world exists. Sansa has only really been exposed to the human side of Game of Thrones. So immediately Arya and Bran have more in common, and they can both accept that what’s happened to the other isn’t completely implausible. Whereas for Sansa, it’s a bit like, “You’re saying you can change faces, and you’re saying you can see everything? Have both my siblings gone completely mad?”
HBO: Do you agree with Meera’s assessment that Bran died in the cave back in Season 6?
Isaac Hempstead Wright: It’s quite a bold thing for Meera to have said. Sadly, I think in many ways she was right. It’s just this whole idea that Bran has become a much smaller part of the character’s brain, when before 100% of his head was taken up with being Bran Stark. Now, that’s just one tiny file in a huge system. But certainly, he’s almost completely a different character. He acts utterly differently, and really any semblance of personality he used to have has gone.
That said, we’ve been waiting for this to happen since the beginning. It’s Bran’s fate to become the Three-Eyed Raven. That has been his destiny from day one; this is where his story arc has been leading up to from the moment he got pushed out of that tower. So the fact we’re here now is actually a bit of a relief. While he may not be that same character, he now has got a lot more to offer. He’s now an incredibly powerful character now; having all the knowledge in the world puts you in a seriously advantageous position.
HBO: Is there anything left of the old Bran?
Isaac Hempstead Wright: In Episode 4 [“The Spoils of War”] he says, “I remember what it felt like to be Brandon Stark, but I remember so much else now,” which sums up exactly the situation Bran is in. There is a flicker of Bran left in him, but really, can you imagine putting the entire history of the universe, every single moment, every single second that ever existed in one person’s brain? You’d think it would just short circuit. Bran just becomes this calm, zen character. He’s really like a human supercomputer.