Gwendoline Christie on playing Lucifer in Sandman: "I wanted to play something very different from Brienne"

Gwendoline Christie as Lucifer Morningstar
(Image credit: Netflix)

Gwendoline Christie says she was elated to take on the role of Lucifer Morningstar in Netflix's The Sandman, as the devious character greatly differed from her Game of Thrones counterpart.

In the live-action series adaptation of The Sandman, Christie plays Neil Gaiman's version of the Biblical fallen angel who rules over Hell – a part unlike any she's ever played before. "I wanted the challenge so badly to play something very different from Brienne," the actor explained during a press room interview at San Diego Comic-Con, "who I loved playing, but I want to play such a wide range of roles and the fact that [Neil Gaiman and Allan Heinberg] could see me as that character was invigorating to me. They could see something in me that would work."

Christie played Brienne of Tarth for seven consecutive seasons on HBO's fantasy drama Game of Thrones. The heroic knight is cynical and self-serving at times, but is an otherwise valiant warrior who fights for the honor of the House of Tarth. In contrast, Lucifer Morningstar is an omnipresent, darkly angelic being (who was physically modeled after pre-fame photos of androgynous rockstar David Bowie at the character's inception) and is the charming, Machiavellian ruler of Hell. The character was previously played by Tom Ellis on Fox and Netflix's DC show Lucifer, but Gaiman cast the 6 ft 3' blonde Christie in order to return the character to its comic book roots.

The actor worked with movement coach Harry Alexander in order to nail Lucifer's physicality, which added to the challenge. "It was important to think about [the physicality of] this: that even if I was going have to wings, if I was going to be still, there'd be a reason for it. If I was going to be precise, there would be an absolute reason for it."

As for Lucifer's personality, Christie commented on the "strangeness" of developing the character at the very start of the pandemic. "Lucifer is isolated and I think something that we've all felt during this time is that isolation is also a terrible disease, you know?"

The Sandman premieres August 5, 2022 exclusive on Netflix. For more, check out our lists of the best Netflix shows and the best Netflix movies

Lauren Milici
Senior Writer, Tv & Film

Lauren Milici is a Senior Entertainment Writer for GamesRadar+ currently based in the Midwest. She previously reported on breaking news for The Independent's Indy100 and created TV and film listicles for Ranker. Her work has been published in Fandom, Nerdist, Paste Magazine, Vulture, PopSugar, Fangoria, and more.