Game of Thrones fans came out in force today to celebrate their very own Tyrion Lannister, aka Peter Dinklage on his 52nd birthday. While already a well-established actor, it was his role as hard-done-by Tyrion that brought him to the attention of many new fans and gave his career an amazing boost. Since his time on Thrones, he doesn't seem to have stopped for breath, even having a role of a rather large "dwarf" in Avengers: Infinity War, one who as it turns out played an important part in the proceedings, building Stormbreaker for Thor.
Dinklage was born in New Jersey in 1969, and studied acting at Bennington College before starting work in a guitar shop and partaking in a number of amateur dramatic productions. He made his film debut in Living in Oblivion in 1995, an independent dark comedy that also starred Steve Buscemi and Catherine Keener. His big break didn't come until 2003, when he had the lead role of Finbar McBride in The Station Agent. Dinklage played a quiet, unmarried man with dwarfism who finds solitude in a deserted train station in a small town in New Jersey.
From here on out with every subsequent birthday, Dinklage's career just seemed to go from strength to strength. He appeared in Elf with Will Ferrell, the 2005 reboot of Lassie, Death at A Funeral in 2007, The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian in 2008, had his first foray into the world of Marvel Comics with X-Men Days of Future Past, and Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri in 2017. He made his Marvel Cinematic Universe debut the following year as Eitri in Avengers: Infinity War in 2018, and the same year starred in the title role of a new musical adaptation of Cyrano de Bergerac.
However, no matter how successful his film career, it was being cast as Tyrion Lannister in Game of Thrones in 2011 that really had an astronomic effect on his popularity. He was the first actor to be cast in the series, a whole two years before the series first aired, which showrunners David Benioff and DB Weiss said was always their plan because of the actor's "core of humanity, covered by a shell of sardonic dry wit, is pretty well in keeping with the character." However it wasn't a given that he would accept the role, having been choosy about playing in genre series and saying that as a dwarf he would not "play fantasy elves or leprechauns." Not being familiar with George R R Martin's books, it took only half a meeting with Benioff and Weiss for him to sign on.
Dinklage won four Emmy Awards for his role as Tyrion, as well as a Golden Globe, and from the second season, he was given top billing on the show. He has many projects currently in the works, including the movie version of Cyrano, the Toxic Avenger reboot, a voice over in Hitpig and newly announced The Wild Bunch and The Dwarf. As his fans celebrated his birthday today, they will be happy to know we will seeing a lot more of him to come in the future. Check out some of the birthday messages from his Twitter fans and colleagues below.