Travis Fimmel (Ragnar) discusses his favorite moments from Season 1, how much he is like his character and some of the pranks he’s pulled on set.
Q: The first season of Vikings was well received. Having also seen the reception you got at San Diego Comic-Con, did you feel more pressure in coming back to play Ragnar for a second time?
TF: We’re very lucky how last year went. It came across well and we’re very excited about this year. The scripts are even better and everyone knows their character a lot better. It’s going to be a really good second series. Was it more pressure? No, I think it was easier the second year.
Q: Was there any difficulty in being away for so long and having to come back on the point where you left off?
TF: I went back to work on my farm for six months and it’s a whole different life, so the first couple of days on set took a bit to get used to. It took me a long time to be able to learn my lines!
Q: How much are you and your character alike?
TF: We look very similar. I guess I’m very ambitious like him. I want to be successful. I want to be proud of myself, you know, and have a bit of posterity or something.
Q: I’ve heard some stories about you on set—particularly in your treatment of Jefferson Hall [Torstein]—and I was hoping you could confirm if they were true?
TF: Uh oh…
Q: Did you put Jefferson’s phone in the waste bin at the start of lunch with the hope of everyone throwing their rubbish on top of it?
TF: It fell into the bin. But unfortunately there was liquid at the bottom and his phone got wrecked. But he emptied the bin in my bed—and then he found it back in his car!
Q: Did you stop production on a battle scene to trick the crew into thinking you had your finger sliced off by one of the swords?
TF: Yes. But it was more for Ken Girotti, the director. He panicked a bit. It was pretty funny. That’s probably going to happen to me now too. I’ll probably have my finger chopped off some day!
Q: Finally, what was your favorite moment from Season 1?
TF: My favorite moments were the Gabriel Byrne scenes. It was a privilege to work with someone so talented. I enjoyed the scene when I’m asking him permission to go west and the games we played together acting wise. This year, there are plenty more scenes like that with Linus Roache joining the show. He’s a worthy adversary for Ragnar, but there are no villains, necessarily. We’re all good guys—just different agendas!