Why ‘Vikings’ star Travis Fimmel returned to TV for ‘Raised By Wolves’

After a three year break following his exit from “Vikings,” Travis Fimmel returns to TV in sci-fi epic “Raised By Wolves.”

Premiering Thursday on HBO Max, the show is executive produced by Ridley Scott, who also directed the first two episodes. Set in the future, it follows two androids raising human children on a mysterious planet called Kepler-22B after a war has destroyed Earth.

“I was never going to do TV again [after ‘Vikings’],” Fimmel, 41, tells The Post.

“I just didn’t want to commit to something so long. But because of Ridley’s involvement, I kind of had no choice. I just said ‘yes’ without reading the script. Ridley is such an iconic filmmaker, it’s an actor’s dream.”

The Australian born Fimmel, who began his career as a model, is best known for playing the cunning chieftain Ragnar Lothbrok on History’s hit “Vikings” from 2013-17 — until Ragnar met his end in the fourth season by being thrown into a pit of snakes. Following that departure, Fimmel turned to the big screen, starring in movies such as “Warcraft” and “Lean on Pete.”

“Quite often [in television] you’ve got to sign a thing for 6 years, and that’s a big chunk of your life to do the same thing. I’d rather do different things,” he says. “There’s some great storytelling on TV because of the time you get to follow characters’ journeys. But yeah, I’d rather do a film and then go away and never have to do that one character again.”

But the prospect of working with Ridley Scott was an offer he couldn’t refuse, so he found himself on the small screen again in “Raised by Wolves.” He stars as Marcus, a warrior-priest in Mithraic, the religion that had a civil war with atheists prior to the events of the show. He’s part of the Ark, a spaceship heading to planet Kepler-22b to start a new society. They soon find themselves clashing with the android known as Mother (Amanda Colin), as conflict simmers again.

“In the future on this show, the world is destroyed because of people not respecting each other’s beliefs. I’m a complete nonbeliever in anything, but I’m very happy for people to have their own beliefs; whatever makes them feel good. I just wish people respected other people’s beliefs, even if they’re different than their own,” says Fimmel.

To make matters more complicated in “Raised By Wolves,” Marcus has a backstory involving a secret identity.

“Marcus was a child soldier, and all he knows is just to survive. He’s never had loved ones around him,” says Fimmel.

“I enjoyed exploring all of his flaws. The harder stuff is always more interesting, to me… the mental thing of finding out ways where you can mess with the audience and make them not sure if you’re a good guy or a bad guy, and what your motives are. I always enjoy that aspect — making them try to guess what I’m thinking.”

The show filmed in South Africa, using its rugged landscape as its basis for the desert planet.

“It’s a beautiful country. I did safaris, it was amazing.”

Aside from “Raised by Wolves,” Fimmel is also working on a series about Wyatt Earp for History, where he’ll produce, write, and star as the legendary Old West lawman. But that’s been put on the back burner due to the pandemic, which he’s spent fixing up his ranch in Calif., he says.

“Vikings” is also getting a spinoff series on Netflix called “Valhalla,” premiering at an unannounced date. When asked if there’s a chance he could appear in it, Fimmel says, “No, but I’d love to go and maybe direct one [episode] or go spend time with the crew. I love all those people. It was a great experience, and I look forward to watching the spin-off.”

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