Nov. 25, 2013 at 10:42 AM ET
Over three seasons on "Game of Thrones," actor Jack Gleeson, who plays King Joffrey Baratheon, has proved he has talent — his HBO series character is even more loathsome than originally written in George R.R. Martin's novels. But fans won't have Gleeson to kick around much longer, as he's planning on leaving show business.
"(Acting) was always a recreation beforehand, but when I started doing 'Game of Thrones' perhaps the reality was made too real for me," the 21-year-old told Ireland's Independent. "The lifestyle that comes with being an actor in a successful TV show isn't something I gravitate towards."
The actor told the publication that he will stop acting professionally when he finishes his role on "Thrones." He was 17 when he auditioned for the role, and attends Trinity College in Dublin, where he is studying philosophy and theology.
"Since going to Trinity and garnering an interest in philosophy and with Goal (an aid agency) and my theater company I've kind of just re-evaluated what I want to do," he said.
He doesn't watch himself on the show, and calls it "bizarre" when he does see the occasional clip. He also said he doesn't find Joffrey someone he can defend. "I suppose he's the product of his context and his family. In terms of redeemable qualities, there wouldn't be many."
"Game of Thrones" is expected to return to HBO in Spring 2014.