How Sean Bean Feels About His Characters Almost Always Dying

Sean Bean may currently be very much alive on TNT’s Legends, but the actor has a reputation for getting killed off of many of the TV shows and movies he signs on for. Before his TNT gig, the actor was famously signed on to Game of Thrones, and was executed toward the end of Season 1 in a move that shocked fans who hadn’t read the books ahead of time. Now, Bean has spoken out, discussing exactly how he feels about being known as the dude who dies over and over again on the screen. Here’s what he had to say:

I have died quite a few times to be fair. I've seen that reel of clips – it sounds a bit macabre, but I watched that back, and I'd forgotten some of the scenes I'd died in… (I don’t) take it to heart... For some reason, the parts I play, like Boromir or Ned Stark, have a life online long afterwards. I keep seeing, what do you call them – memes? 'One does not simply ask for a drink' instead of 'One does not simply walk into Mordor' – that sort of thing. They'll probably be my unintended legacy.

It’s not too bad of a legacy, I guess, to be known as the guy who dies a lot. I especially enjoy the fact that Sean Bean told the Radio Times that he actually went back and watched the clips of the times he died on TV and the big screen, noting it’s happened so often there’s a few times he had forgotten about (we’re presuming not the Boromir or Stark times). There’s actually one meme that I particularly like noting the years the actor was killed off, so let me go ahead and share this gem with you.


But honestly, just having the years isn’t enough. The man has died a record 25 times on TV and film. He died in Patriot Games, Game of Thrones, GoldenEye, and so many more. You can check out all 25 roles that led to character deaths—some are more memorable than others—below.

CaravaggioWar RequiemThe FieldLorna DooneScreen OneClarissaPatriot GamesScarlettGoldenEyeAirborneEssex BoysThe Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the RingDon’t Say A WordEquilibriumHenry VIIIThe IslandFar NorthOutlawThe HitcherRed Riding: The Year of our Lord, 1973Ca$hDeath Race 2Black DeathAge of HeroesGame of Thrones

Bean has had a pretty good run since his Game of Thrones death back in 2011. (Although word on the street says his GOT character will be back during Seaosn 6 in this form.) He made it through some big budget movies including Jupiter Ascending, The Martian and Pixels. Plus, he made it through an entire Silent Hill movie (Revelation) without kicking the bucket, although I'm pretty sure I remember a dream death sequence in that movie, so I don't know if that really counts or not. Of course he’s still alive and kicking on the show he currently stars in, Legends, too. But who knows, that series is promising to totally retool the plot for Season 2 in the hopes that it will bring in more viewers, and if that doesn’t work, the network should know they can always go big and kill the lead off before the end of the series. I’m not necessarily advocating for that, but I’m just saying…

You can catch new episodes of TNT’s Legends on Monday nights at 10 p.m. ET.

Jessica Rawden
Managing Editor

Jessica Rawden is Managing Editor at CinemaBlend. She’s been kicking out news stories since 2007 and joined the full-time staff in 2014. She oversees news content, hiring and training for the site, and her areas of expertise include theme parks, rom-coms, Hallmark (particularly Christmas movie season), reality TV, celebrity interviews and primetime. She loves a good animated movie. Jessica has a Masters in Library Science degree from Indiana University, and used to be found behind a reference desk most definitely not shushing people. She now uses those skills in researching and tracking down information in very different ways.