"Yes, you're right to be afraid in my presence."
- Metal Beak to Kludd, Legend of the Guardians.

Surtr full
Species: Greater Sooty Owl (Tyto tenebricosa)
Gender: Male
Family: Mate: Nyra
Book Appearances
Appears in: None
Movie Appearances
Appears in: Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga'Hoole
Mate of Nyra and the leader of the Pure Ones in the movie

Surtr, more commonly known as Metal Beak, was a powerful Greater Sooty Owl, or Tyto tenebricosa. He was the leader of the Pure Ones who resided in the canyonlands. He was the mate of Nyra, and his greatest desire was to create a world in which to glorify the pure and perfect being of Tytos. Surtr is the main antagonist of Legend of The Guardians movie.


Before the Movie

Long before the events of the movie, an owl named Surtr gathered an army of Tyto-genus owls that called themselves The Pure Ones and led a crusade against all of the owl kingdoms, enslaving and murdering anyone who crossed their path. The Guardians of Ga'Hoole, led by the warrior owl Lyze of Kiel, rose to arms and confronted the Pure Ones in what is known as The Battle of the Ice Claws. The Pure Ones, led by Surtr, greatly outnumbered the Guardians, and it seemed as if all hope was lost... but then Lyze of Kiel managed to secure victory for the Guardians by defeating Surtr in single combat, cleaving off his beak, scarring his face and sending him falling into the darkness below. This scared all the Pure Ones, causing them to flee. Though left for dead, he some how survived, and took to wearing a metal mask to protect and conceal his maimed face, becoming known as Metal Beak. The would-be conqueror then would spend decades rebuilding his army and preparing for his revenge.

Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga'Hoole

Metal Beak lead the Pure Ones from the fortress of The Beaks as the mastermind of the series of kidnapping that occurred throughout the owl kingdoms in an attempt to muster his forces. At one point, he made a deal with Allomere, a Guardian of Ga'Hoole who had become a turnfeather. He would give Allomere a portion of the owl kingdoms that Allomere would be allowed to rule over as a king.

During this time, Metal Beak had been constructing a device using the magnetic properties of flecks that would render any owl helpless and leave them at the mercy of bats, who were immune to the adverse conditions. After Allomere returned from a stealth mission in St. Aggie's with Eglantine, the parliament decided to fight the Pure Ones. However, this was all part of Metal Beak's plan to gain revenge on the Guardians, especially Lyze of Kiel. Allomere lead the Guardians right to the place where the fleck device was kept and Metal Beak's bats  


How Surtr appears in the movies.

unleashed its power upon the unsuspecting Guardians. When Soren and his friends arrived and attacked the bats Metal Beak and Nyra sent out to finish off the Guardians, Metal Beak went back on his deal with Allomere; claiming that there was room for only one king, he ordered him killed. Allomere was then attacked and dragged away by several bats (Metal Beak didn't find this out, but Allomere was able to escape the bats, but was later killed by his apprentice, Shard [Allomere killed Shard's parents]). After Soren disabled the fleck device, the Pure Ones and the Guardians battled each other, and Ezylryb flew to Metal Beak's fortress and confronted him. Metal Beak declared he would have his revenge, but Ezylryb replied that Metal Beak should thank him, claiming that the latter's scarred face was 'an improvement'. This enraged Metal Beak and he angrily lashed out at Ezylryb, engaging his old nemesis in a fierce fight. At first, Metal Beak appeared to have the upper wing, but Ezylryb eventually overpowered the much larger warrior, sending him spinning out of control into the ground and knocking him out cold. Ezylryb then cautiously approached the motionless owl, but suddenly Nyra flew in screeching just as Metal Beak opened his eyes. Metal Beak kicked Ezylryb, throwing him backwards and knocking his helmet off. Nyra then attacked Ezylryb, her mate soon joining in. Ezylryb was no match for both Metal Beak and Nyra and was quickly overpowered and brutally beaten by the two tyrants. 

Soren came to Ezylryb's aid after fending off his brother Kludd (who became a Pure One soldier) in a burning forest. Thinking that Kludd was dead, Soren was filled with anger and grabbed a flaming branch, planning to defeat Metal Beak in order to stop him destroying another owl's life. With the flaming branch, Soren fought the High Tyto, who easily had the upper wing against Soren. As they fought, Soren dropped the branch. He flew down after it, and was trapped on the ground, against a rock as Metal Beak came toward him, preparing to kill him. Soren struggled to reach the branch, but managed to stab Metal Beak by impaling the charging owl with the branch. Metal Beak stared at him for a few moments and laughed slightly in amusement of Soren's bravery, but the laugh turned into a gurgle as he fell backwards, dead. Metal Beak, the most evil owl ever to have been born, was dead. His mask fell off, too, revealing his horrific scars (luckily for the kids, the movie didn't show it). His death caused a horrified Nyra to call for a retreat.

Character Design

"As the villain of the movie, Metal Beak was a lot of fun to work on. He's a Greater Sooty owl, which are quite distinctive with their spotted markings and large dark eyes. It was decided early on to play up his eyes, as they are so different from most other owls and his injured eye was also made to be a different colour: There was some initial exploration into how old and battered he might look.One of my first passes ended up looking more like road kill, so we knew that was going too far The main challenge was trying to make him look old and regal, yet also evil and battle-worn. He needed to look like a leader who could easily strike fear into the owls and bats that he commanded. I gave him thicker feathers around his neck and chest (based on some reference of raven feathers) which became almost like a lion's mane and really helped give his character a sense of strength. Patrick Awa did some fantastic concept designs of Metalbeaks helmet. which I developed to integrate the symbol of the Pure Ones."
- Vivienne To, Art of Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga'hoole


  • The ending of the film implies that "Metal Beak" might just be a title, with Kludd being the next to bear it.
  • If Metal Beak felt truly betrayed by Allomere or if he just wanted to get him out of the way is unknown.
  • He is voiced by Australian actor Joel Edgerton.
  • He is blind in his left eye. On the other side of his face, he has no feathers, which is strange, as normally one wouldn't have feathers on his or her blind side. This may have been done, however, to make him appear more battle-worn.
  • Even though it's implied that Surtr lost his whole beak, parts of it are still visible in the movie. Concept art reveals that only a large part of his upper beak is missing.
  • In the books, Greater Sooty Owls are the lowest ranking Pure Ones and are never promoted past soldiers.
  • The Metal Beak in the books is never referred to as Metal Beak by his fellow Pure Ones, while in the movie he takes obvious pride in the title.
  • While instructing his soldiers to "crush" the Guardians, Metal Beak appears to make a Nazi salute.


"Pure Ones, attack! Crush them! Before they can recover!"

- Metal Beak to the Pure Ones in Legend of the Guardians.

"It would be cruel to make them wait any longer. Finish them."

- Metal Beak to Nyra in Legend of the Guardians.

"Well, the legendary Lyze of Kiel, once again it's come down to just you and me. Now I can take my vengeance, for this."

"Hm? you should thank me. It appears to be an improvement."

- Metal Beak and Ezylryb in Legend of the Guardians.


From the movie

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