Jack Gleeson

Jack Gleeson

Born in Cork, Ireland, Jack Gleeson began acting at the age of seven as a member of the esteemed Independent Theatre Workshop in Dublin. He made his screen debut in the fantasy drama "Reign of Fire" (2002) with Christian Bale before segueing into several short films. By 2005, he was working steadily in U.K.-lensed projects, including "Batman Begins" (2005) and the popular Irish comedy series "Killinaskully" (RTE One 2003-2008). Gleeson received solid reviews from the European press for his performance as a love-struck young man driven to extreme behavior in the drama "All Good Children" (2010). The following year, Gleeson received his breakout role as Joffrey Baratheon on "Game of Thrones." One of the most villainous characters on a series populated by a panoply of rogues, scoundrels and outright criminals, Joffrey was the product of incestuous union by his mother, Queen Cersei (Lena Headey) and her brother, Jaime Lannister (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau), and inherited their penchants for cruelty and lust for power. Made king after the death of the long-ruling Robert (Mark Addy), Joffrey quickly establishes himself as a vicious dictator by killing the well-liked Eddard Stark (Sean Bean), which launches the devastating War of the Five Kings. Despite the popularity of the character and the critical acclaim for his performance, Gleeson made no bones about stating publically that his performance as Joffrey would be his last. He enrolled at Dublin's Trinity College as a student of philosophy and theology, and stated that he would end his acting career upon completion of his studies. In late 2013, Gleeson gave a lengthy speech about the toxic qualities of the public's fascination for celebrities, and when his "Game of Thrones" character came to a horrific end in April 2014, Gleeson repeated during his media interviews that he planned to devote himself to academia for the foreseeable future.