Where Is Old Daario From 'Game Of Thrones'? Ed Skrein Is A Rapper & A Comic Book Character These Days
As though Game Of Thrones weren't already confusing enough, with its two-dozen-plus series regulars, its countless supporting characters, its multi-continent-spanning locations, and its plots within plots within plots within plots, HBO's hit fantasy show had to up and switch actors on us between seasons. When Daenerys Targaryen's advisor Daario Naharis turned from a Fabio-lookalike into a bearded rogue between Seasons 3 and 4, casual viewers may have assumed that the sellsword captain was a shapeshifting Faceless Man much like Season 2's Jaqen H'ghar. But not so — Orphan Black's Michiel Huisman took over for Daario after the original portrayer, Ed "Original Daario" Skrein, left Game of Thrones. So what's old Daario up to now?
Skrein first made a name for himself as a rapper, dropping his debut record, Mind Out, in 2004. He transitioned to acting in 2012 with a small role in The Sweeney, the 2012 adaptation of the popular '70s British cop show, starring Ray Winstone (The Departed), Damian Lewis (Homeland), and Hayley Atwell (Marvel's Agent Carter). He followed that up the same year with a starring role in the crime drama Ill Manors, and appeared in supporting roles in two 2014 films, Tiger House and Northmen: A Viking Saga.
You might think that willfully leaving one of the the world's most famous and popular shows would be career suicide... but not for Skrein, who actually seems to be doing pretty well for himself right now. Here's everything the actor's been up to since hanging up that awful wig:
An adaptation of the same Danish/Swedish crime series Bron/Broen that also inspired FX's The Bridge , The Tunnel told the story of the elaborate investigation after a body is discovered on the dividing line between the UK and France in the Channel Tunnel. Premiering in Oct. of 2013, The Tunnel began just four months after Skrein's first — and final — season on Thrones had wrapped. He had a supporting role in three of the 10 episodes as a pimp named Anthony. The show starred Clémence Poésy (yes, that's Fleur Delacour from Harry Potter And The Goblet Of Fire) and Thrones' own Stephen Dillane (aka Stannis Baratheon) in the roles played by Diane Kruger and Demián Bichir in the American version.
Kill Your Friends
Not to be confused with the 2013 Daniel Radcliffe film Kill Your Darlings, this darkly comedic crime thriller stars X-Men's Nicholas Hoult (above) as Steven Stelfox, a talent scout who "takes the concept of 'killer tunes' to a murderous new level." Based on the 2008 novel by cult British author John Niven, Friends also stars Into The Woods' James Corden, and Skrein as a character named Rent.
The Transporter: Refueled
And now we arrive at the reason Skrein left Thrones in the first place: to star in this reboot of the popular action franchise in the role formerly occupied by Jason Statham. The fourth film in the series (originally titled The Transporter Legacy before someone realized how close that was to the fourth film in the Bourne series), Refueled is the first in a proposed new trilogy of Transporter movies. While the franchise may not enjoy the same critical acclaim as Thrones, it's easy to see why someone might jump at the chance to sign on to a trio of blockbuster films. Refueled also stars Ray Stevenson (most famous for HBO's Rome, Thrones' spiritual predecessor), and will open this September.
The last of Skrein's upcoming projects is perhaps the most exciting: he will be playing the villain Ajax in Marvel's much-anticipated Deadpool movie. In the comics, Ajax was an enforcer for the Weapon X Project, the top-secret genetic research program that turned Wade Wilson into Deadpool. Possessing enhanced strength and super-speed — as well as having had all his nerve endings removed so he can't feel any pain — Ajax was one of the antihero's main adversaries. I can't wait to see what movie magic it takes to transform Daario Naharis into the bulging genetic monster pictured up there; hopefully it's convincing because Deadpool, which stars Ryan Reynolds, Morena Baccarin (Firefly), T.J. Miller (Silicon Valley), Gina Carano (Haywire) is by far the actor's most high-profile gig yet.
Images: Ben Stansall/Getty Images