His Dark Materials: James McAvoy: Bringing Lord Asriel to Life | HBO

  • Published: 01 November 2019
  • New episodes of His Dark Materials air Mondays at 9PM on HBO, starting November 4. #HBO #HisDarkMaterials
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    His Dark Materials stars Dafne Keen, James McAvoy, Ruth Wilson and Lin-Manuel Miranda. Adapting Philip Pullman’s award-winning trilogy of the same name, which is considered a modern masterpiece of imaginative fiction, the first season follows Lyra, a seemingly ordinary but brave young woman from another world. Her search for a kidnapped friend uncovers a sinister plot involving stolen children, and becomes a quest to understand a mysterious phenomenon called Dust. As she journeys through the worlds, including our own, Lyra meets Will, a determined and courageous boy. Together, they encounter extraordinary beings and dangerous secrets, with the fate of both the living — and the dead — in their hands.

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    His Dark Materials: James McAvoy: Bringing Lord Asriel to Life | HBO
  • Entertainment Entertainment

Comments • 210

  • polite critique
    polite critique  2 weeks back

    This swine can't act at all did you see his pathetic acting in x men dark phoenix scum has no shame

    • abby ehrenstein
      abby ehrenstein  3 weeks back

      I just wish they let him use his actual accent. I like everything else about the casting but it keep tripping me up specifically in this show.

      • Ellie Dowling
        Ellie Dowling  3 weeks back

        So I don't know which original actor dropped out but thank goodness they did.. :) James Mcavoy is fab in this role, he knows the world, the character inside out and he brings such a complex character to life... Plus, he anf Ruth Wilson are an absolute fire of a team.. :) X

        • Writing Geek
          Writing Geek  4 weeks back

          I’m basically Lord Asriel....except for the killing part.
          The good to serve humanity’s independence is one of my wildest dreams really.

          • Yasumi Ⓥ
            Yasumi Ⓥ  4 weeks back

            I love how much depth he added to Asriel. Daniel Craig's version seemed a lot more stoic and collected. Jame's Asriel really did strike you as a man you equally respect and fear at the same time, just like Lyra saw him. He had that glint of violence in his eye even as he spoke with noble intention that you couldn't really get a clear read on his character if you hadn't read the books. Love it! Both his and Ruth's characters have so much complexity and it's so captivating to watch all these layers unravel, just as Lyra watches them.

            • Prachi Sharma
              Prachi Sharma  4 weeks back

              Hii Asriel... You a bitch .... Bye

              • Radiatun Zidnee
                Radiatun Zidnee  1 months back

                Fun Fact: James McAvoy(Lord Asriel) and Anne-Marie Duff(Ma Costa) were married. They got divorced in 2016.

                • Radiatun Zidnee
                  Radiatun Zidnee  3 weeks back

                  @Kaitlin Quintero I know!

                • Kaitlin Quintero
                  Kaitlin Quintero  3 weeks back

                  They have a son together actually

                • Hilly M
                  Hilly M  3 weeks back

                  I was wondering if they had chance to meet each other on set.. I love her character in Shameless.. she did a good in this one too

                • Prachi Sharma
                  Prachi Sharma  4 weeks back


              • Matthew Henthorn
                Matthew Henthorn  1 months back

                I think that this portrayal of Asreal, is not as powerful as in the books. In the retiring room he doesn't need to shout, he just speaks and it his persona does the rest. A snow leopard is a powerful predator that is scary enough just by its mere presence, it doesn't need to snarl to make a point, just growl slightly. So much of this version of Asreal lacks that force. Hopefully the next episode will bring more of that power to the fore.

                • Riri Ambarsari
                  Riri Ambarsari  1 months back

                  James McAvoy is one of my fav actor after Matthew Macfadyen...

                  • Ada Bell
                    Ada Bell  1 months back

                    I watch anything he is in! Gorgeous talent of a man

                    • Noi
                      Noi  1 months back

                      Okay, I think I fall in love with him.

                      • hkh25
                        hkh25  1 months back

                        That libERty at 2:49 tho

                        • manu mudgal
                          manu mudgal  2 months back

                          The Snow leopard is so awesome

                          • lBloodyl
                            lBloodyl  2 months back

                            He is only in one episode?...

                            • PrettyTiaF
                              PrettyTiaF  2 months back

                              I like the show but the fact that the personified souls/companions are called “Demons” REALLLYYYYY creeps me out. Like wtf?!?!?!?? I watched the first episode and it doesnt seem to dark (no pun intended) so we’ll see. I love the whole cast

                              • PrettyTiaF
                                PrettyTiaF  1 months back

                                @InsaneDark lolol

                              • InsaneDark
                                InsaneDark  1 months back

                                @PrettyTiaF then stay tuned 😁

                              • PrettyTiaF
                                PrettyTiaF  1 months back

                                Uh oh! Lol. I have zero idea whats bout to happen. Im scared! Not ready

                              • InsaneDark
                                InsaneDark  1 months back

                                ​@PrettyTiaFno the comment was probably reply to your statement that it doesn't seem so dark. If you did a research you probably know what is going to happen. Lets just say its pretty dark and twisty (but not messy and confusing) that's why we needed HBO to take over cause they aren't afraid of dark and twisted scenes like other producing houses.

                              • PrettyTiaF
                                PrettyTiaF  1 months back

                                @Elaine Afrane are u saying this show will get even weirder to the point its no longer watchable?

                            • PrettyTiaF
                              PrettyTiaF  2 months back

                              I just MELTTTTTT everytime i see his sexy a$$

                              • Anya Khalid
                                Anya Khalid  2 months back

                                I like James more than Craig. Better suit for Lord arsreil.

                                • Lellyma Pomms Cymbillnos
                                  Lellyma Pomms Cymbillnos  2 months back

                                  People need to realise a story being APPROPRIATE for kids does not make it a "story for kids". A story doesn't need to have gratuitous violence and detailed sexual politics to be worthy of adult attention.

                                  • Zahra Basiri
                                    Zahra Basiri  2 months back

                                    Everybody's going to start season 2 hating him, Don't they?

                                    • polesmoker
                                      polesmoker  2 months back

                                      this "kids story", I read at 11, same age as lyra, opened me up to who I freely am today. pullman makes an open testament to respecting the intelligence of children. we need to stop blinding their eyes, and our own. this book gave me the drive to become an intelligent, strong woman who is willing to question the authority.

                                      • polesmoker
                                        polesmoker  4 weeks back

                                        @Megan King we can travel across worlds, it's all a matter of perspective :) time and space and reality is truly insane

                                      • Megan King
                                        Megan King  4 weeks back

                                        Same. Those books influenced me incredibly. I mean even now I kinda wish I had a dæmon and could travel across worlds. I need to read those books again

                                      • Avery Keats
                                        Avery Keats  1 months back

                                        polesmoker Lyras 12

                                    • Carys Marshall
                                      Carys Marshall  2 months back

                                      My daughter is one of the baby Lyra's 😍 mainly the helicopter one and some shots in water. Yes... James McAvoy has kissed and cuddled my daughter... 🤗😭

                                      • Punkroes
                                        Punkroes  4 weeks back

                                        @Carys Marshall So you do. Adorable. However, you would be amazed of what people lie about so I do tend to take things with a pinch of salt as I did in this* case.

                                      • Carys Marshall
                                        Carys Marshall  4 weeks back

                                        @Punkroes very random thing to lie about 😂 there were 3 babies used. We filmed for 2 days in Cardiff. We have some lovely pics of her onset @carys1985 on insta.

                                      • Punkroes
                                        Punkroes  4 weeks back

                                        Not saying this isn't true but it's a shame the credits can't verify it. Forgive my skepticism but literally anybody could claim this. However, if it is true, congrats.

                                      • Megan King
                                        Megan King  4 weeks back

                                        Damn your so lucky!! I wish I could get a hug from James McAvoy...

                                    • z7Asriel96
                                      z7Asriel96  2 months back

                                      = )

                                      • IratePirate
                                        IratePirate  2 months back

                                        Lord Asriel is an excellent character. Knowing what you know when you read the books, he's just a phenomenally brave man.

                                        • Thais Andrade
                                          Thais Andrade  2 months back

                                          I love his views on the book. Feels like he’s really connected to the character.

                                          • Patricia Rossi
                                            Patricia Rossi  2 months back

                                            Scottish accent <3 <3 <3 <3 <3

                                            • Sanam Singh
                                              Sanam Singh  2 months back

                                              I've read only the first book and watched the movie, but let me tell you how excited I am for this show. James kills all his roles and lord asriel will be amazing. And the fact that ha read the series makes me confident he'll be the perfect lord asriel

                                              • Al Pacino FanForever
                                                Al Pacino FanForever  2 months back

                                                James McAvoy will never not be desirable 😍 and he looks so much like Michael Fassbender and Luke Evans

                                                • HailG3
                                                  HailG3  2 months back

                                                  His "niece"

                                                  • H. M.
                                                    H. M.  2 months back

                                                    He's so handsome I want to cry

                                                    • Megan King
                                                      Megan King  2 months back

                                                      Dammit I really shouldn't like this character when I know what he does in the books

                                                      • IratePirate
                                                        IratePirate  4 weeks back

                                                        @Megan King He doesn't really care about Dust beyond knowing it has the power to destroy the Authority

                                                      • Megan King
                                                        Megan King  4 weeks back

                                                        @IratePirate Oh no he just wants to know what Dust is, even if it does mean killing his daughter's best friend

                                                      • IratePirate
                                                        IratePirate  2 months back

                                                        He's the most fascinating character because he's not thinking in terms of normal human morality. He's on an entirely different level. He fights for worlds and all liberty, not for individuals.

                                                      • Jacob Wh Khu
                                                        Jacob Wh Khu  2 months back

                                                        Ya what he did at the end of the first book was unforgivable

                                                    • Kai Hanson
                                                      Kai Hanson  2 months back

                                                      "his niece." Nopeee

                                                      • Lucy Fielder
                                                        Lucy Fielder  2 months back

                                                        james mcavoy is one of the best male actors out there

                                                        • Daeyoung Ha
                                                          Daeyoung Ha  2 months back

                                                          Did...did Lord Asriel say “I’m sorry” to Lyra???? Umm scuse me

                                                          • Nemo Says
                                                            Nemo Says  2 months back

                                                            Didn't he say "I'm sorry, I just don't have time for you" or something like that?

                                                        • Sanghoon Lee
                                                          Sanghoon Lee  2 months back

                                                          I tried to read the first book in the series. Couldn't get past 150 pages What a horribly messy collection of prose it was. And the author had the audacity to name his books after Milton's words.

                                                          • Sanghoon Lee
                                                            Sanghoon Lee  2 months back

                                                            @Megan King Pullman himself said far worse things about the books he didn't like. Look up what he said about C. S. Lewis.

                                                          • Megan King
                                                            Megan King  2 months back

                                                            Look I understand that this is your opinion but you could've just said that you didn't like the books. Phillip Pullman is a amazing author with a great imagination and does not deserve to be insulted like this. You could've given some criticism because I don't think any author would particularly enjoy hearing this about their books, it really doesn't help their confidence. Again, I understand that this is your option but word it a bit better next time.

                                                        • Grant Wallace
                                                          Grant Wallace  2 months back

                                                          A forgettable film has become an unmissable TV series. I loved the books and am already itching to see the second series.

                                                          • Mar Wolfking
                                                            Mar Wolfking  2 months back

                                                            What the film called thr golden compass

                                                        • hearttune98
                                                          hearttune98  3 months back

                                                          I actually like McAvoy’s characterisation of Asriel better than Craig, just from the first episode alone ... You can also see more shades of *SPOILER* suppressed fatherly love, from his carrying Lyra and apology for leaving her, than Craig had with Dakota Blue Richards in the original film.

                                                          • Timo van Galen
                                                            Timo van Galen  6 days back

                                                            ​@Qacc6 Craig portrayed Asriel's ruthless side very well, and it's a shame that we didn't get to see his take on the character properly developed.

                                                          • Qacc6
                                                            Qacc6  2 months back

                                                            hearttune98 I thought Craig was excellent in conveying a character, given the short screen time given to his character in the movie. Look-wise I prefer Craig too. But McAvoy convinced me by the end of Ep1 that he’s version is also quite valid and attractive.

                                                          • Charizarzar
                                                            Charizarzar  2 months back

                                                            Lol Asriel is not fatherly in the books. There is obviously the backstory we know about where he wanted to protect her as a baby, but he’s extremely cold to her in the books. The one thing the movie did perfectly was casting

                                                          • Matthias Wolf
                                                            Matthias Wolf  2 months back

                                                            Yes, he's more multi-dimensional. But at the same time, Lyra is described to be sort of afraid of Asriel in the books. She admires him but he is frightening her and is very strict with her. So I'd say Craig's version was closer to Pullmann's vision.

                                                          • Hello There
                                                            Hello There  2 months back

                                                            I think he understands Asriel better than Craig did and is therefore able to portray him properly

                                                        • Gwagia
                                                          Gwagia  3 months back

                                                          This is a TV show of the Golden Compass. Correct?

                                                          • InsaneDark
                                                            InsaneDark  1 months back

                                                            yes 1st season is golden compass (US title)/northern lights

                                                          • Erin Rose
                                                            Erin Rose  2 months back

                                                            You should read the trilogy even if you don’t read books often it’s so worth your time

                                                          • Megan King
                                                            Megan King  2 months back

                                                            Yeah it's based on Philip Pullman's trilogy His Dark Materials. It's a really good read if you haven't read it yet

                                                          • Eli Vogel
                                                            Eli Vogel  2 months back

                                                            Both are based off of His Dark Materials, a book trilogy by Philip Pullman.

                                                        • Mo 243354
                                                          Mo 243354  3 months back

                                                          McAvoy is a good actor, but lacks the presence and gravitas to play Asriel. Craig was perfect.

                                                          • vinceretnoctem -
                                                            vinceretnoctem -  3 months back

                                                            Never read the books , watched the first episode i thought it was so extremely boring and kinda silly
                                                            The child actors are potatoes they just sit there

                                                            • Xam271
                                                              Xam271  3 months back

                                                              Oh yeah, his niece...

                                                              • Valkyrie
                                                                Valkyrie  3 months back

                                                                If James McAvoy were to play Jack the Ripper and Adolph Hitler, I would be rooting for both of these awful ppl because there is nothing that James can't do and nothing I won't watch that he's in.

                                                                • Angel Donoghue
                                                                  Angel Donoghue  3 months back

                                                                  What’s bad is that I watched his dark materials and I watched it with subtitles coz I didn’t understand what he was actually saying. Coz he’s so Scottish but I’m also only watching it because of him.

                                                                  • Manon
                                                                    Manon  2 months back

                                                                    He has an english accent when he plays some roles, like Lord Asriel I think. To be honest, I knew he was scot but I was astonished to hear his real accent.

                                                                  • Qacc6
                                                                    Qacc6  2 months back

                                                                    Angel Donoghue What? He uses an English accent in the series.

                                                                • Par pa
                                                                  Par pa  3 months back

                                                                  James McAvoy is an awesome Lord Ezreal . As a book fan I was very satisfied by first episode.

                                                                  • Kieran Brain
                                                                    Kieran Brain  3 months back

                                                                    I really like this so far. The only criticism i have is that I feel like they don’t talk to their dæmons enough since they’re supposed to be so close

                                                                    • Megan King
                                                                      Megan King  4 weeks back

                                                                      @shirasagi白鷺 Yeah they just need to talk to them a bit more. As far as I know only Mrs Coulter's dæmon can't talk so I feel like characters (such as Boreal) should talk to their dæmons a bit more when their in private (Eg. When Boreal was sitting in the car alone)

                                                                    • Megan King
                                                                      Megan King  4 weeks back

                                                                      @Abbie Campfield Yeah I hope they get enough money next time around. This show deserves it

                                                                    • shirasagi白鷺
                                                                      shirasagi白鷺  2 months back

                                                                      @Megan King sometimes daemons are small animals, and they may hide in their human's pockets for example. in the Subtle Knife, Lord Boreal was living in Will's world and to everyone around him, it didn't seem like he had a daemon. His daemon, a snake, was actually hiding in his sleeves.
                                                                      (Also in the Northern Lights, Pantalaimon turns into a mouse and hides in Lyra's pocket when she confronts Iofur and lies to him by saying she is Iorek's daemon).

                                                                    • Abbie Campfield
                                                                      Abbie Campfield  2 months back

                                                                      @Megan King that's probably cause it would be way to expensive to cgi a daemon for every single person in one scene? I'm not sure

                                                                    • Megan King
                                                                      Megan King  2 months back

                                                                      Hopefully in the next season they'll be able to give EVERYONE a dæmon because sometimes I see a passerby that doesn't seem to have a dæmon.

                                                                  • Kieran Brain
                                                                    Kieran Brain  3 months back

                                                                    0:33 oh his ‘niece’.

                                                                    • Jacob Wh Khu
                                                                      Jacob Wh Khu  2 months back

                                                                      It's just like Mrs Coulter says Lyra is her 'protégé'

                                                                    • Megan King
                                                                      Megan King  2 months back


                                                                    • aishriena
                                                                      aishriena  2 months back

                                                                      @Fajer Ayub Lyra is actually his daughter.

                                                                    • Fajer Ayub
                                                                      Fajer Ayub  2 months back

                                                                      What does this mean 😂

                                                                  • BAKANEKO
                                                                    BAKANEKO  3 months back


                                                                  • Gigglepud
                                                                    Gigglepud  3 months back

                                                                    Honestly, this might be the best thing to come out of casting Lord Asriel. I love his acting, but even more so, his analysis of his characters. It's always so on point, and sometimes brings new perspective/ideas that I had never considered before

                                                                    • Gigglepud
                                                                      Gigglepud  3 months back

                                                                      2:09 "I'm a cold, solitary, ruthless killer"
                                                                      Welp :')