In Brief

Game of Thrones actor Neil Fingleton dies aged 36

UK's tallest man, who had switched from basketball to acting, reportedly suffered heart failure

Britain's tallest man, Neil Fingleton, who played Mag the Mighty in Game of Thrones, has died at the age of 36.

Fingleton, who stood 7ft 7.5in tall, died on Saturday after apparently suffering heart failure, The Guardian reports.

Fingleton also held the title of tallest man in the European Union, and was among the 25 tallest men in the world.

In his biography page in the Guinness Book of Records, Fingleton said that despite occasional "stupid remarks and questions" from strangers his unusual height was "great".

"I have never been self-conscious about my height," he said. "I am more conscious of going bald, so that should tell you. I never let my height play a negative part in my life."

Born in Durham, Fingleton moved to the US as a teenager after attending a basketball camp in Connecticut aged 16. He won a sports scholarship to the University of North Carolina, before signing with the minor league Boston Frenzy in 2004.

After playing basketball in the US, the UK and Spain for three years, he was forced to retire due to an injury, and decided to try his hand at acting.

He was best known to audiences for his memorable role in the HBO fantasy series Game of Thrones, where he appeared as Mag the Mighty in the 2014 episode Watchers on the Wall.

Fingleton, who also had roles in X-Men: First Class and Doctor Who, took pride in his work, telling the BBC he wanted to be recognised "not just for being tall but for being a talented actor".

Fans and colleagues took to social media to mourn Fingleton's premature passing and share their memories.

Welsh actor Ian Whyte, who plays Wun Wun, another giant in Game of Thrones, said that Fingleton had "followed his dreams".

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