Hafþór Júlíus "Thor" Björnssonnote (born November 26, 1988 in Reykjavík) is an Icelandic professional strength athlete, actor and former professional basketball player.
He once had a shot at joining the NBA, until a knee injury brought an end to these dreams. Hafþór is famous for his huge stature (206 cm / 6 ft 9 in tall) and for his weightlifting feats, being one of the strongest men in the world (for instance, he holds two world records for deadlifts1045 lb / 474 kg under Elephant Bar conditions, and 1104 lb / 501 kg under strongman conditions).note
Outside his physical prowess, he's famous for having played Ser Gregor "The Mountain" of House Clegane, the fearsome knight servant of House Lannister, in the HBO series Game of Thrones from the fourth season to the last.
- Game of Thrones (2014-2019) as Ser Gregor "The Mountain" Clegane / "Ser Robert Strong"
- Kickboxer: Retaliation (2018) as Mongkut
- The Northman (2022) as Thorfinnr
Tropes in his works:
- Adam Westing: Most of his appearances in commercials bank on his role as Gregor Clegane (such as skull-crushing people who disagree with him).
- Bad Boss: The Icelandic Mountain Vodka commercials depict him as an obliviously selfish boss to his hapless Beleaguered Assistant Einar.
- The Big Guy: Seriously, just look at the picture.
- Blood Knight: Both Gregor Clegane in Game of Thrones and Mongkut in Kickboxer: Retaliation live and breathe for fighting and killing.
- The Brute: He played two human behemoths with evil employers, Gregor Clegane and Mongkut.
- Friend to All Children: Has dressed up as anything from Colonel Sanders and Santa Claus for advertisements, to getting fully painted to look like the Hulk when going to visit an indoor playground, all to entertain Islandic kids.
- Huge Guy, Tiny Girl: Is inevitably this with any woman put next to him in his works, but it's especially apparent with his wife, who's 5'2. This gallery should give perspective.
- The Other Darrin: He is the third actor to play Gregor Clegane after Conan Stevens (Season 1) and Ian Whyte (Season 2). Interestingly, he's actually the shortest of all three (Stevens and Whyte are both 7'1"), while still being a giant. This is helped by the fact that he's the most powerfully-built of the three by a significant margin, making him seem bigger.
- Red Baron: As Gregor "The Mountain" Clegane, a moniker he sometimes uses for himself.
- The Rival: To Eddie "The Beast" Hall, fellow winner of WSM. Wile it started out as a pleasant Friendly Rivalry between the two, it sadly turned more hostile in time over accusations of ego, cheating and attitude issues being thrown between both sides, eventually leading to them deciding to settle it in a boxing match that ultimately happened in March 2022 (Hafþór knocked Eddie down twice and won by unanimous decision). This escalated even further upon his controversial world record deadlift of 501 kg.
- Stout Strength: In his strongman days he consumed a lot of food and maintained a high body weight in order to maximize his strength, giving him a husky but still muscular appearance. After he retired from strongman and slimmed down for boxing his agility and endurance markedly improved, at the expense of some of the sheer strength he had before; by any sane metric, Hafthor's still absurdly strong, but he's no longer Min-Maxing for it.
- Vocal Dissonance: He tends to put on a deeper and darker voice when playing characters like Gregor Clegane, mostly because many find it hard to believe how light and welcoming his voice sounds in reality for someone of his size.
- World's Strongest Man: His most famous character, Gregor Clegane, is the strongest man in all Westeros. Hafþór himself won the Real Life WSM title in 2018, and finished in the top three of that competition six times before finally cashing in. He even became the first man to accomplish a legendary feat and then surpass it, as according to legend, Orm Storulfsson carried a ship's mast for three steps, broke his back, and was never the same; Thor carried a heavier mast for five steps, was completely fine, and was utterly ecstatic when he finished.
- In May 2020 he set a new world record by being able to deadlift a weight of 501kg!