Gwendoline Christie (born 1976) is an English actress known for being 6 feet 3 inches tall, making her one of the tallest actresses in the world. She hails from the South Downs, and started doing gymnastics at school there, but a spinal injury caused her to switch to acting. She was trained by actor-author Simon Callow and graduated from Drama Centre London in 2005.
After finishing her studies, Gwendoline settled down in London, and began acting in stage plays, notably as Lucifer in Christopher Marlowe
's Doctor Faustus
. Like many English actors, she acts in stage plays, movies, and TV shows. She was also the subject of a series of pictures by photographer Polly Borland.
Her most prominent role now is in HBO's Game of Thrones
as the tall female knight Brienne of Tarth, which she won in a nearly uncontested audition after showing up in armor. Her portrayal of Brienne gained widespread praise.
- Adaptational Attractiveness: Brienne is described as being an ugly woman, nicknamed "Brienne the Beauty" out of spite, and Gwendoline was made to look not so much ugly as Hollywood Homely through a combination of masculine armor, dirty makeup, and an unflattering hairstyle.
- Dawson Casting: She is about 15 years older than Brienne. Part of it is an Age Lift of some characters. And that, as with Peter Dinklage playing Tyrion Lannister, there are few actors fitting the character's unusual physique.
- Dyeing for Your Art: To play Brienne, Gwendoline gained about 15 pounds of muscle, cut her hair short, and went around town wearing androgynous clothes.
- Platonic Life Partners: It would seem that she's this with her co-star, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau.
- Playing Against Type: She's mostly known for playing the honorable and righteous Brienne of Tarth. In Dragon Age: Inquisition, she plays a scheming noblewoman.
- Statuesque Stunner: At 6′3″, she towers over most men and women in the acting industry.