Kit Harington owes his Game Of Thrones role to a black eye he sustained in a fight just before his audition.
The actor was dining at a McDonald's fast food restaurant with a former girlfriend when an unidentified man began insulting her. He confronted the man, but the altercation did not end in Kit's favor - and he showed up for his audition the next day with a smashed-up face.
"I had a black eye," he tells W magazine. "I'd been in a fight the night before... I'd went into McDonald's with this girl I had been dating, and it was late night and there was no seats. I asked this guy and this girl that he was with if we could sit at the same table as them. We sat down, and quite quickly he started being rude to the girl I was with, calling her names... He called her an ugly pig or something worse, and I said, 'No you can't, you can't call her that. Get up!'
"He'd been sat down the entire time so when he got up he just kept going," he continues. "I realized I had to, at that point, I had to throw the first punch or else I'd look like a complete wimp. And I got batted."
However, the injury helped him land the role of Jon Snow.
"I think that man who punched me in the face may have helped me get the job, so thank you," he adds.
The role also led to Kit's romance with his former co-star Rose Leslie. Harington and Leslie first sparked dating rumors in 2012, but the private couple never opened up about the reports. They went public with their romance on the red carpet at the Olivier Awards in London in April (16), holding hands and sharing a kiss for the cameras.