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‘Game Revealed’ takes you inside the making of Game of Thrones Season 8 Episode 1: ‘Winterfell”

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'Game Revealed' takes you inside the making of Game of Thrones Season 8 Episode 1: 'Winterfell"

Winter is here, folks.

Game of Thrones Season 8 Episode 1 takes us straight into a moment of grand convergences. All the key players have finally come together to make a final stand against the oncoming Dead and their personal dynamics is what takes up most of ‘Winterfell‘.

But how did it all come together, and how tough was it to handle so many diverse storylines at once? HBO’s feature ‘Game Revealed’ takes us behind-the-scenes of one of the most anticipated episodes in TV history and decodes all the action. Clocking in at over 17 minutes, the featurette goes deep into the making of ‘Winterfell’ and addresses several aspects of it. Let’s have look at some of the most important ones!

Daenerys arrives at Winterfell

As promised before, Season 8 Episode 1 had heavy callbacks to the Pilot episode from way back in 2011, including the soundtrack. The King’s Arrival is played for the first time again in 10 years as Jon and Daenerys are first visible among Unsullied soldiers. Another major callback is the little boy climbing on a tree and running below legs to get a better look – recalling both Bran and Arya from Season 1. The little boy’s vantage point was perfectly suited to capture the awe-inspiring scale of Dany’s army and dragons. “We thought the arrival was a way to capture what was at stake for Dany and for Jon”, says showrunner D.B. Weiss, “Everybody has a slightly different take on what’s happening here.” It was also a production nightmare with hundreds of extras with tight close-up shots.

Meet the Family

Inside Game of Thrones Season 8 Episode 1

Emilia Clarke, Sophie Turner, and Kit Harington talk about their approach to the super-awkward meeting between two power ladies. Dany is polite and courteous at first, as Emilia says, “You’re meeting the family. You want to do well, you want them to like you Goddamnit!.” Sansa, on the other hand, is wary of this new Targaryen queen and does not want to relinquish authority. Episode director David Nutter reveals his brief to Sophie for this scene, “You have to know one thing; this is your house.” Kit Harington sums up Jon’s feelings, “It’s not a comfortable homecoming, no.”

We’ve Got Company

Inside Game of Thrones Season 8 Episode 1

Game of Thrones might be the epitome of Fantasy storytelling now, but before all that, there was Star Wars. Showrunner David Benioff says he thought “It was some practical joke” when they first learned the legendary Star Wars creator Geroge Lucas wanted to visit the GoT sets. It’s a fanboy moment for Benioff as he says, “for so many of he was the who started our obsession with this kind of big epic storytelling.” The featurette shows Lucas watching the filming of Jon and Daenerys walking through Winter Town scene, looking at the monitor with Nutter, and speaking to the actors.

The Stark Family Tree

Inside Game of Thrones Season 8 Episode 1

The Godswood and its Weirwood Heart Tree have been an integral part of the Winterfell storyline since Season 1, but this is the first time we get a peek into how it is made to fit George R.R. Martin‘s unusual description. Production Designer Deborah Riley explained the care and hard work that goes in to make such an iconic piece, which is very unlike normal trees with white trunks, blood-red leaves, and carved faces on the barks.

This is also the setting of Jon and Arya’s reunion, arguably the most emotional moment on the episode. Director Nutter credits the amazing chemistry that Harington and Maisie Williams shared off-screen; “I didn’t have to do anything. We had two actors who hadn’t work together since Season 1 a chance to show pure true love.”

The Dead Strike First

Inside Game of Thrones Season 8 Episode 1

If the first episode is about setting up the key pieces and players, how can the Dead be left behind? In an episode dominated by lords and ladies talking, they make their presence felt and how! We see their handiwork in the Last Hearth, with poor little Ned Umber impaled as the centerpiece of one of Night King‘s ghastly severed limb-mandalas. The scene where the dead boy awakens and is put to fire was extremely tricky and risky to shoot, with multiple layers of VFX and stunt doubling to make it appear realistic. Stuntman Paul Lowe is the hero in this scene, although he is pretty gung-ho about it; “This is the first time I got a full burn so that’s a nice tick.” Phew!

Dragonflight

Inside Game of Thrones Season 8 Episode 1

Jon rides a dragon! That was an exhilarating moment for the audience and actors alike. Kit and Emilia, best friends in real life, had some opportunity for exchange here. Kit rode a dragon for the first time which Emilia has been doing for long, and Emilia came to Iceland, where most of Kit’s Night’s Watch shooting took place. This is kind of the first time where Dany is shown riding without a battle raging around her, so it was quite fun. “It just felt like a magic carpet ride!” Emilia exclaims. Kit’s first time on the dragon, however, was…uncomfortable. We suggest you watch the video to find out more about that!

The featurette also talks about the different Stark Reunions (Sansa-Tyrion, Arya-Gendry, Arya-Hound, Bran-Jaime). We are not including them here because the dynamics are pretty obvious if complex. There are also celebrity and crew cameos. Comedians Martin Starr (Gilfoyl from Silicon Valley) and Rob McElhenney (Ronald in It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia) joined the cast as Euron Greyjoy’s men only to die in about two seconds.

All in all, the featurette just makes us all the more excited about episode two. What’s your take? Let us know!






Writer, translator, and high fantasy nerd based in Kolkata, India. Would dearly love to own a pet dragon some day, but the black market isn't really helping.

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Three Game of Thrones actors get Emmy nominations with “unofficial” submissions

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Three Game of Thrones actors get Emmy nominations with "unofficial" submissions

Game of Thrones was the world’s biggest television show for nearly a decade, so it’s no surprise that the show had way too much talent. We recently talked about the whopping 32 nominations it scored at the Emmy Awards 2019. One notable thing is, three of these nominations weren’t even filed by HBO, but by the actors themselves. Read on!

Season 8 might have had a bad storyline according to a large section of the fanbase, but everybody can agree on one thing — the actors all gave their best, and the acting was brilliant as usual. Needless to say, the headliners made it to the Emmy nominations again, but HBO didn’t nominate the few actors that really stepped up this season. We had reported about how five actors submitted their own nominations directly.

Three Game of Thrones actors get Emmy nominations with "unofficial" submissions

Alfie Allen (Theon Greyjoy), Pilou Asbæk (Euron Greyjoy) and Richard Dormer (Beric Dondarrion) had entered in the supporting actor category, while Gwendoline Christie (Brienne of Tarth) had entered in the supporting actress category, with Carice Van Houten (Melisandre), going for the guest actress category. The great thing is, three of the five made the cut — Alfie Allen, Gwendoline Christie and Carice Van Houten are officially in the race now.

All three had terrific performances, and it is very much possible that they bring in at least one win within the three of them. No doubt they deserve it, especially because they have been voted in despite the submissions being unofficial.

What do you guys think? Talk to us in the comments, down below!






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George R. R. Martin praises HBO’s Chernobyl, says it’s worthy of Emmys

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George R. R. Martin praises HBO's Chernobyl, says it's worthy of Emmys

Game of Thrones is over, but HBO has no plans of slowing down. Immediately after Game of Thrones ended, HBO aired a limited series called Chernobyl, which became an instant hit. Now, the creator of the Game of Thrones universe, George R. R. Martin has praised Chernobyl and expressed his approval for the show to win at the Emmy awards. Read on!

Chernobyl is a mini-series about the nuclear plant disaster in the Ukrainian city of the same name, in 1986, and has been named the best ever miniseries by TV enthusiasts worldwide, except maybe in Russia. George took to Twitter to express his love for the series:

Not only did he praise the show, but also Jared Harris, whose performance in the show has been loved by the fans as much as the series itself. Needless to say, the show is expected to shine in the awards season, as Martin expects.

What do you guys think? Talk to us in the comments, down below!






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See Tormund and Gendry enjoy a game on Nintendo Switch in Game of Thrones behind the scenes photo

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See Tormund and Gendry enjoy a game on Nintendo Switch in Game of Thrones behind the scenes photo

Game of Thrones had the ultimate face-off in Season 8 when the Army of the Dead faced the living folks in Winterfell. The Battle of Winterfell saw a lot of people uniting to take down the Night King, and among them were Tormund Giantsbane, and Gendry (now Baratheon). A new behind the scenes photo from the sets shows the two enjoying a nice game on a Nintendo Switch. Read on!

The picture, posted on the Game of Thrones subreddit, shows Joe Dempsie, who played Gendry, and Kristofer Hivju, who played Tormund Giantsbane, still in their costume and the bloody makeup, just sitting down to play. Take a look:

[NO SPOILERS] Gendry and Tormund playing games in Winterfell after The Battle of Winterfell from gameofthrones

As we all know, the Battle of Winterfell sequences took a gruesome 55 nights to film, and have been described by the stars as some of the roughest times they have had filming for the show. So it’s no surprise that they would have at least some way to relax on the sets in between takes or appearances.

Nintendo consoles are also famous for being the best for the local multiplayer experience, so that’s probably why these two seem so engrossed in the game. If only we knew which game they were playing!

What do you guys think? Talk to us in the comments, down below!






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