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Marco Islø, Alex Høgh Andersen, Jordan Patrick Smith and David Lindstron preview what\'s to come.
Spoilers for Vikings\' Season 4 midseason finale, "The Last Ship," continue below. If you haven\'t seen the episode yet, this article discusses some major reveals.
Goodbye, young sons of Ragnar, and hello, new adult Vikings ready to vie for Kattegat\'s kingship.
Vikings jumped over a decade into the future at the end of its Season 4 midseason finale, moving far past Ragnar\'s defeat in Paris to a point in the future where his young sons are now grown men. With the flash forward in time, fans of the series were introduced to the new actors who will be playing Ivar, Ubbe, Sigurd and Hvitserk.
Check out exclusive photos of the new cast members below:
Marco Islø as Hvitserk, Alexander Ludwig as Bjorn, Alex Høgh Andersen as Ivar, Travis Fimmel as Ragnar, Jordan Patrick Smith as Ubbe and David Lindstron as Sigurd
Marco Islø as Hvitserk, Alex Høgh Andersen as Ivar, Jordan Patrick Smith as Ubbe and David Lindstron as Sigurd
The casting of Marco Islø as Hvitserk, Alex Høgh Andersen as Ivar, Jordan Patrick Smith as Ubbe and David Lindstron as Sigurd has been kept a secret for months; when IGN visited the set of Vikings in October, none of the new actors were able to tell their friends or family why they had been spending so much time in Dublin. Fortunately, that doesn\'t need to be kept a secret anymore.
The aging up of Ragnar\'s four young sons enlivens Vikings\' storytelling. With Ragnar\'s absence in the years between his defeat at Paris and his return to Kattegat at the end of "The Last Ship," his sons began to resent him as much as they looked up to him, and they grew up in the shadow of his accomplishments.
"It\'s almost a new generation to Vikings. Vikings, staying true to the era, is young men becoming warriors," explained Smith. "To watch four young guys get that jump start that [Ragnar] got, they\'re pretty much starting from where he left off, and then you get to see them go even further. ... You need other people to come in to keep the fighting and the life of Vikings alive, rather than having old men chopping each other down."
The quartet of new actors are similar young blood for the cast. Both Islø and Andersen are from Denmark and had previously worked together in a short film, and actually drove together to their auditions in Stockholm. Lindstron is also Scandinavian, from Sweden, whereas Smith is Australian like Travis Fimmel, the actor who plays Ragnar.
Smith was the first of the four to be cast after submitting a self-tape, and quipped that "up until six weeks [before the October interview], I knew Vikings had hats and horns and swords," and nothing more. (Lindstron was quick to correct him that the "hats and horns" stereotype isn\'t actually true.) The rest were all lifelong fans of Vikings and Norse mythology, and all four were thrilled to have joined the cast of the show.
As each of the sons of Ragnar and Aslaug aged, they developed their own distinct personalities. Smith\'s Ubbe is the oldest, and he\'s stepped into the father role in Ragnar\'s absence, taking care of his younger brothers. Islø described Hvitserk as the quiet brother and a "relaxed warrior," but his costars are quick to jokingly call Hvitserk a "quiet dick."
Sigurd is the most impacted by the events of Season 4a, specifically the way Aslaug treated him when Ragnar left him behind with Ivar during the Paris raid. Lindstron called Sigurd the teen rebel; someone who\'s sensitive and emotionally driven, with a "strong sense of right and wrong." He also has a chip on his shoulder about the youngest of the brothers, Ivar.
The actors playing Ragnar\'s oldest three sons all agree that Andersen\'s Ivar is going to be the fan favorite of the brothers, and it\'s clear from Ragnar\'s reintroduction into their lives in "The Last Ship" that he already has a soft spot for his crippled son.
"The thing which separates Ivar from the other brothers is he understands Ragnar and he does not respect him in the same way as the other brothers," Andersen explained. "He\'s making fun of him. He\'s a little bit like Ragnar is to everybody else, and for once Ragnar experiences someone like him toward him. It\'s pretty new and interesting.
"The thing is, Ragnar is incredibly intelligent. It doesn\'t take him that much time before he realizes that, because of the crippled Ivar, because of the past and because of his entire life as a cripple in an environment that does not embrace it, he\'s the toughest one of them all."
According to other three actors, Ivar is "the most Viking out of the four of us," but he\'s also "an absolute lunatic." Some of Ivar\'s troubling tendencies came out when he was a child, and apparently that\'s going to be emphasized going forward. Even has his other brothers respect him and contend with him, they\'re also terrified of him.
"Even though he\'s the younger brother, we would look up to him for the Viking he is and how strong-willed he is," Smith said. "He has one of the biggest disabilities you can have as a Viking where you can\'t walk, but he\'s still smart enough and strong enough to keep going."
Said Andersen of his character, who went on to become the legendary Ivar the Boneless, "Ivar is strong and determined and independent, and you need that if you have to take over the world later on."
Vikings returns with its 10-episode Season 4b later in 2016.
Terri Schwartz is Entertainment Editor at IGN. Talk to her on Twitter at @Terri_Schwartz.