Jack Gleeson

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Jack Gleeson
Jack Gleeson (August 2012) (headshot).jpg
Gleeson in August 2012
Born (1992-05-20) 20 May 1992 (age 26)
Cork, Ireland
Alma materTrinity College, Dublin
Years active2002–2014

Jack Gleeson (born 20 May 1992)[1] is an Irish former actor, best known for his portrayal of Joffrey Baratheon in the HBO television series Game of Thrones.

Despite his early breakthrough on Game of Thrones, which won critical acclaim, Gleeson has not acted in TV or film since 2014. He currently runs his own touring theatre company, whose debut puppet show—Bears in Space—premiered in Edinburgh Festival Fringe, in Edinburgh, Scotland in 2014.[2]

Early life[edit]

Gleeson was born in Cork, Ireland. Gleeson attended Gonzaga College for his secondary education. He attended drama classes when young, with his sisters Rachel and Emma who are also actresses in Ireland.

Gleeson is a student of Trinity College, Dublin, studying philosophy and theology[3] and he is also a member of DU Players. In 2012, he was elected a scholar at the same university.[4][5]


Gleeson began acting at the age of seven in the Independent Theatre Workshop.[6] His first roles were in films such as Reign of Fire in 2002, Batman Begins in 2005, Shrooms in 2007, and A Shine of Rainbows in 2009.[7] In 2010, he appeared in a leading role in All Good Children. The reviewer for Variety magazine considered Gleeson "the pic's big discovery".[8]

Gleeson starred as Joffrey Baratheon in the HBO series Game of Thrones.[9] He cites Joaquin Phoenix's portrayal of Commodus in Gladiator as an influence on his performance.[10] He is a founder and artistic director of Collapsing Horse Theatre Company, which is based in Dublin.

In 2012, Gleeson indicated an intention to retire from acting to pursue an academic career once his work on Game of Thrones was finished.[3] In 2014, Gleeson confirmed he would be permanently retiring from acting after concluding his work in Game of Thrones. In the same interview, he stated that while he had previously been interested in pursuing academia, he had since 'gone off that idea'.[11]

In 2015, Gleeson starred in the puppetry shows Bears in Space created by his theatre company Collapsing Horse and in mid-2016 the show premiered in New York.[12]



Year Title Role Notes
2002 Reign of Fire Kid Uncredited
Moving Day Jack Short film
2003 Fishtale Boy with the Fish
2004 Tom Waits Made Me Cry Young Vincent
2005 Batman Begins Little Boy
2007 Shrooms Lonely Twin
2009 A Shine of Rainbows Seamus
2010 All Good Children Dara


Year Title Role Network Notes
2011–2014 Game of Thrones Joffrey Baratheon HBO 26 episodes
IGN People's Choice Award for Best TV Villain (2012–2013)
Nominated—IGN Award for Best TV Villain (2011–2013)
Nominated—Saturn Award for Best Performance by a Younger Actor in a Television Series (2013)
Nominated—Scream Award for Best Ensemble (2011)
Nominated—Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series (2011, 2013)
Nominated—Young Hollywood Award: We Love to Hate You (2014)


  1. ^ "Jack Gleeson Biography". TV Guide. Retrieved 16 March 2015.
  2. ^ Bartleet, Larry. "Bears In Space, the Puppet Play Starring Jack Gleeson, AKA Joffrey". NME. Retrieved 9 December 2017.
  3. ^ a b O'Regan, Mark (17 April 2012). "Jack Gleeson swaps 'Game of Thrones' for seat of learning". Irish Independent. independent.ie. Retrieved 21 April 2012.
  4. ^ Email: Fellows & Scholars (Email) (2 July 2012). "Welcome – Fellows & Scholars : Trinity College Dublin, The University of Dublin, Ireland". Tcd.ie. Retrieved 5 April 2013.
  5. ^ "Meanwhile, At Trinity College". Broadsheet.ie. 16 April 2012. Retrieved 5 April 2013.
  6. ^ Itwstudios.ie
  7. ^ "Jack Gleeson Lands Major HBO Pilot!". In The Spotlight. 10 March 2010. Archived from the original on 10 March 2010. Retrieved 11 December 2011.
  8. ^ Felperin, Leslie (20 May 2010). "All Good Children – Film Reviews – Cannes". Variety.com. Retrieved 11 December 2011.
  9. ^ Kit, Borys (19 July 2009). "Sean Bean ascends to Game of Thrones". Reuters. Retrieved 11 December 2011.
  10. ^ Hill, Logan (June 2012). "The Villains Questionnaire: Jack Gleeson". GQ. Retrieved 1 June 2012.
  11. ^ James Hibberd (13 April 2014). "'Game of Thrones': Jack Gleeson talks royal wedding shocker -- EXCLUSIVE". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 14 April 2014.
  12. ^ http://www.nme.com/blogs/nme-blogs/jack-gleeson-aka-king-joffrey-baratheon-is-playing-with-puppets-now

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