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Kit Harington Is 'Happy' He Took an Acting Break After Game of Thrones : I Had 'Mental Health Difficulties'

·3-min read
Kit Harington attends the Tribeca Festival Welcome Lunch during the 2021 Tribeca Festival at Pier 76 on June 09, 2021 in New York
Kit Harington attends the Tribeca Festival Welcome Lunch during the 2021 Tribeca Festival at Pier 76 on June 09, 2021 in New York

Cindy Ord/Getty

Kit Harington recognizes the positive and negative aspects of his Game of Thrones ties.

During an appearance on SiriusXM's The Jess Cagle Show on Monday, Harington opened up about how being on the award-winning drama impacted his mental health.

"I went through, kind of, some mental health difficulties after Thrones and during the end of Thrones, to be honest. And I think it was directly to do with the nature of the show and what I've been doing for years," Harington, 34, told host Jess Cagle. "I think I took, sort of, a break after Thrones where, so, I don't want to work for a year [and] I want to really kind of concentrate on myself. I think I'm really happy I did that."

Harington famously played Jon Snow on Game of Thrones from 2011 to 2019. The English actor's rep confirmed to PEOPLE in May 2019 that he entered treatment to "work on some personal issues" shortly after the HBO series finale aired.

RELATED: Everything Kit Harington Has Said About Struggling with Game of Thrones Fame

A source later told PEOPLE, "the role and especially the level of fame he was thrust into ... was a lot for someone so young and just out of drama school," but he took the job seriously despite it being "extremely stressful."


Helen Sloan/HBO Kit Harington and Rose Leslie in Game of Thrones

Over two years after the HBO show's eight-season run, Harington admitted he's well aware of the "real cultural impact" Game of Thrones still has and is "really proud of being part of it."

"It's been a part of the journey since it finished, was just becoming proud of that show and not running away from it and not running away from what it was and who I played in it, but just owning it and being proud of everything about it, really," he explained.

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"Long may it continue. I really wish them luck with what they're doing next [with the spinoff shows]. I'm going to watch it," he continued. "[The original show] came at a fascinating time. It was spread out over a fascinating time globally, I think."

Harington is also grateful for what he gained from being a part of the acclaimed series, for which he earned two Emmy nominations and one Golden Globes nod.

"I met my wife [Rose Leslie]. My child is a direct result of Game of Thrones. I still have very, very good friends from that show," he shared. "It did nothing but wonders for me."

RELATED: Kit Harington Donates Over $9K to Fundraiser Started by Game of Thrones Fans During His Treatment

Harington's next role is a grave departure from Game of Thrones. He's set to star on an episode of Modern Love for its second season.

"Doing this Modern Love episode was a bit like you don't have to live in that intense place all the time," said the actor, who is also gearing up to star in Marvel's Eternals. "Why don't you do something that takes the weight off? Why don't you do something fun? And I think that was part of my my thinking on this one."

Modern Love premieres Aug. 13 on Amazon Prime Video.

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