Superhero in the making

I am a deep-dyed Game of Thrones fan and can say that I know almost all its central characters and the actors who portray them. But, just a few months back, I had to reconsider my much-vaunted claim when Netflix released the poster of its new Marvel web series, Iron Fist. Smitten by the brawny businessman — doing a Bao Quan (a greeting in martial arts) — on the poster, I decided to look up the actor. Lo and behold, it is Finn Jones, the boyish Ser Loras Tyrell from GoT.

Post GoT, Jones underwent a sizeable makeover for his latest role — as Danny Rand and his alter ego, Iron Fist, a superhero bestowed with a mystical force. On surviving a plane crash involving his wealthy parents, he is saved by warrior monks, who train him into a fierce warrior. He returns to reclaim his family legacy and uses his super powers against any threats.

In an email interview, the 29-year-old actor says the transition from Loras Tyrell to Iron Fist was a natural progression. “Iron Fist lined up just when I was ready to move on from GoT. It was a perfect role for me,” says the actor, who is also a DJ and once sang carols to raise funds for Syrian refugees.

On what drew him to Danny Rand, Jones points to the complexities and contradictions of the character. “On one hand, he is a skilled, loyal warrior, and on the other, he is a child, vulnerable and suffering from trauma. He is naive yet optimistic. He is a Buddhist monk and a wealthy corporate leader.”

Action-packed schedule

Being heavy on martial arts, Jones had a lot of homework to do. He had three weeks at the beginning of production to get a head start . Once filming commenced, the shoot extended to 14 hours a day, five to six days a week, chewing into practice schedule. “So I was left with no choice but learn on the job,” he says.

Jones says it was a gruelling and relentless schedule, where his body clock went out of sync. “I was always running on reserves. It became even more challenging when I had to train and learn some choreography as well,” he says.

No pressure

Iron Man, Daredevil, Ant-Man and now Iron Fist — the audiences have a lot of superheroes to idolise. Does he feel pressured to keep up with the image of a superhero? “Not at all,” says Jones. “In season one, Danny is still in the pursuit of becoming the Iron Fist. He isn’t a fully-formed superhero when he is introduced to the audience. He is on the journey to understanding what his super powers are. I believe that’s what makes an interesting character. So, at the moment, being a superhero is the last thing I associate him with.”

GoT memories

Jones, who was last seen in season six of Game of Thrones, played the role of Loras Tyrell, a gay prince. From a stellar star cast, a bevy of exotic locations to a riveting plot, he treasures a lot of memories. “I was on the show for six years, and I made some incredible memories and friends for life. For instance, when we were shooting on a cliff in Ireland, a hurricane came in off the sea and uprooted a huge tent that housed about 500 extras costumes. When I think about it, it was wild to film out in the elements and be exposed to the dangers and wonders of nature,” he says.

What next?

After season one, Finn began shooting The Defenders, a web miniseries by Marvel and Netflix, in which Iron Fist and other superheroes like Daredevil come together to save New York City. The Defenders is set to release in August 2017.

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Printable version | Jun 12, 2021 12:00:18 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/entertainment/finn-jones-on-his-latest-role-in-and-as-iron-fist/article18389645.ece

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