The show of the century and the GOAT are all terms used to describe Game of Thrones because it is undisputedly one of the best TV shows ever created. The show earned $3.1 billion for HBO in subscriptions which is more than the budgets of some nations, which is why talk of the show’s production is hard to ignore. Lots of work went into creating the hit show and almost every member of the cast became an A-lister by default. The long production days were also full of interesting stories behind the scenes that most fans still don’t know about.
Peter Dinklage Was Chosen By George R R Martin Himself
Tyrion Lannister appeared in more scenes of the show than any other character making him the most appreciated member of the cast. He started small, as the hated son of Tywin Lannister, the cruel lord of Casterly rock. The character had to have a sharp mind and most importantly, a sharp tongue that was needed to save him on multiple occasions since he didn’t have the muscle to fight out of most of his troubles.
When HBO took the project to turn George R R Martin’s Song Of Ice and Fire into film, he himself proposed Dinklage for the role of Tyrion. The producers agreed with him and no one else was auditioned for the role. Dinklage killed it on stage winning over 60 nominations for his performance and dozens of awards.
Emilia Clarke Was Not The Original Daenerys
The original pilot of Game of Thrones was shot in 2009 in Morocco and HBO named Tamzin Merchant as Daenerys Targaryen. The writer, George Martin confirmed that her performance was perfect and actually hoped she would hold the role for the entire period of the show. However, in 2010 when the pilot was recast, Merchant had exited and rumoured to have chosen The Tudors over Game of Thrones. At the time, Emilia Clarke who later got the role was working as a bartender.
The Hound Used Varys’ Hair As His False Beard
Conleth Hill who played lord Varys had to shave all his hair every time filming started because Lord Varys had to be humble, quiet and bald. Then came Rory McCan who played The Hound. He needed the facial hair to look strong and fearsome and so the trade was completed. Conleth’s hair was used to create Rory,s facial hair so his look could be completed.
Emilia Clarke Nearly Died From A Brain Aneurism
Emilia Clarke is now one of the most famous actresses in the world after her display as the Mother of Dragons. She confessed that having to shoot nude scenes made her time on the show difficult but that wasn’t the only bad thing that happened to her. Emilia had to undergo surgery twice between seasons of Game of Thrones for an aneurism. The second one was especially hectic as it nearly got her killed. She came out strong enough to join the cast for the fourth season though.
Sophie Turner Later Adopted Lady
Dire wolfs were an important part of Winterfell in Game of Thrones as each of the Stark siblings got one. Sansa Stark’s dire wolf was named Lady and it was the first to be killed off. The dire wolfs were actually being portrayed by dogs and Lady was being played by a Northern Inuit named Zunni who was about to become jobless when her character was killed off. Sophie Turner, then aged just 17 requested to adopt her and HBO allowed it and so Lady and Sansa got to live together once more.
Gwendoline Christie Won Her Role Unopposed
Brienne of Tarth had to be tall, strong and of course have this warrior look about her to make the perfect sword maiden. Now, it is hard to find an actress that fits those features unless you came to London and found Gwendoline Christie. She is 6ft3 tall and had all the features needed to make Brienne of Tarth. It is not clear whether George Martin had her in mind while writing about the sword maiden but when she got wind of the auditions for the role, she started preparing. She showed up dressed for the role and landed it without opposition.
Queen Elizabeth Refused To Sit On The Iron Throne
Yes, the queen visited the set of Game of Thrones during her three-day visit of Northern Ireland in 2014. The monarch joined the long list of enthusiasts that wanted to make sense of George R R Martin’s fantasy tale with the real world. When the queen arrived on set, she failed to recognize some of the stars including Kit Harrington whom she thought to be part of the crew. She visited the Iron Throne although she refused to sit on it because the monarch of Britain is allegedly not allowed to sit on a foreign throne, except this one wasn’t really a throne.
The Stallion Heart Made Emilia Clarke Vomit
So, the Khal’s wife is pregnant and she has to eat the heart of a stallion according to Dothraki tradition. It was one of the most stomach-churning scenes in the show to most fans but it wasn’t easy on Emilia Clarke either. She said that she had to consume 28 hearts which were created using solidified jam. She said they tasted like “bleach and Pasta,” which made her vomit often.
Charles Dance Was Skinning A Real Deer
While many props used in the show were not real, the horses, dogs and pigs were very real. In the scene where Jaime walks in on his father skinning a deer, the dead deer looked to real to most fans and it turns out it was actually true. The team brought an actual deer on set and had Charles Dance who is not a vegan, skin it before being on camera. He opened the animal’s gut and emptied the contents into a bucket with extreme precision. Dance confirmed that he had to be trained to skin an animal for two days before the scene before being able to do it right.
The Production Was Expelled In Malta
Film production is a big earner for most countries considering GOT production pumped over $140 million into the Northern Ireland economy where most of the production was done. However, the production team still has to abide by local laws and most importantly, take care of the environment.
The Game of Thrones team failed the environment in Malta when the workers covered an important fossil-rich rock with sand while creating the desert scene to shoot Daenerys and Khal Drogo’s Wedding. It was a mistake though as the ecosystem on the island was permanently destroyed. The clean up was also not done properly angering the Maltese government which expelled the production team.