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Game of Thrones cast and crew spill the beans on the absolutely bonkers original pilot

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Emilia Clarke improvised an entire speech on Game of Thrones in just 10 minutes!

The first attempt at making something new doesn’t always succeed. When it comes to crafting a world as mystical as Game of Thrones, you can expect a few mistakes. The truth about the scrapped pilot episode of the famed series was revealed in a book by Entertainment Weekly editor, and the legend behind some of the best Game of Thrones coverage, James Hibberd.

An excerpt from Hibberd’s upcoming book Fire Cannot Kill a Dragon, which delves into the making of the show, contains some interesting bits and pieces from the cast and crew. The way they describe the pilot episode is almost unbelievable. The crew filmed the original pilot in 2009. However, the show finally took after 4 years of hard work by the production team perfecting the rocky vision of showrunners David Benioff and Dan Weiss.

It was a frightening time because it was our first time running a production of any scale,” Weiss recalls. “And there are many, many moving parts, human and otherwise, that go into any production, especially one of this size.”

The shooting took place in Northern Ireland and Morocco. There was a feeling of uneasiness among the cast and the crew. According to Nikolaj Coster-Waldau (Jaime Lannister), no one had any idea what they were doing. He said, “During King Robert’s arrival I remember finding the whole thing ridiculous.”

He added, “It’s a very fine balance between being serious and believing it and just being cosplayers. There was certainly not a sense that this was going to be some game-changer for anyone. But we had a lot of fun

Mark Addy, who played King Robert Baratheon, describes, “We were trying to establish the rules and order of this new world. In the Winterfell courtyard scene, nobody kneeled when the king arrived in the first pilot. You can’t play being the king. You can’t display “look at how powerful I am.” People have to give you that by showing subservience. It has to be afforded to you by others. In the reshoot, everybody kneeled. It made a huge difference in terms of establishing who’s in charge.”

Game of Thrones pilot Robert Baratheon

Lena Headey (Cersei Lannister) shared, “I looked like a Vegas showgirl in the [original] pilot — furs and massive hair, like a medieval Dolly Parton. Not that I’m complaining, I loved it. My hair devolved.

Bryan Cogman (then Benioff’s assistant; later a co-executive producer) recalled, “When we first shot the scene where the Starks find the direwolves — this was the version you never saw — the wonder of what a direwolf was wasn’t coming across. It didn’t seem important enough to the characters. And I’m little assistant Bryan running around the set yelling to anyone who would listen: “These are direwolves! No one has seen these in a million years! This is like seeing dinosaurs! It’s not like finding puppies!” And everyone’s sort of chuckling.”

Christopher Newman (producer): “Joffrey had a different haircut. In the original pilot, it was more pageboy cut, slightly pudding bowl-ish, like Henry V. It wasn’t that it didn’t suit him being a little shit, but it softened the edge. The modern cut in the version that aired gave him more spitefulness.”

David Benioff (showrunner): “At first it seemed to us like it was going well, but that was because we didn’t know any better.”

Dan Weiss (showrunner): “As we went on, the cracks turned into bigger cracks, which turned into fissures. You started to feel the wheels coming off by the time we got to Morocco.”

It seems like the pair was clueless about what they were doing from the first day, the previous reveal of which has angered the fans.

George R.R. Martin definitely had fun on the set. He said, “I went to Morocco for Dany’s wedding in the first pilot. I played a Pentoshi nobleman with beard extensions and an enormous hat. I looked like an idiot, but it was fun.” You might remember this picture of GRRM’s Game of Thrones cameo:

George R. R. Martin Game of Thrones cameo

Harry Llyod (Viserys Targaryen): “I had a different wig. It was titanium and silver, and it was shorter and a bob. Looking back, it was a mistake. There were consultations: “I’m not like Draco Malfoy, I’m not like Legolas … how do we do this?”

Iain Glen (Jorah Mormont): “It was a bit ragged and, in some ways, ill conceived, and no one had great conviction. Since the wedding was shot at night, quite a lot of money had been spent on seeing absolutely f—k-all.”

Bryan Cogman: “Is it fantasy with dramatic trappings? Is it a drama with fantasy trappings? There was a nervousness about the pilot leaning into the fantasy too much — ultimately to a fault. Key exposition was cut to make the dialogue sound more “real,” and as a result, the pilot didn’t make much sense. The impulse to not be over-the-top Shakespearian and Tolkien-esque was right — you’re trying to make it as grounded as possible — but this is still an epic fantasy, and if you ignore that, it’s to the detriment of your story.”

Originally, Tamzin Merchant played the role of Daenerys. Jason Momoa, who played the fierce Khal Drogo, recalls, “[Merchant] was great. I’m not sure why everything was done. But when Emilia got there that’s when everything clicked for me. I wasn’t really “there” until she arrived. ”

Emilia Clarke Game of Thrones pilot

Bryan Cogman: “Everybody involved in making the original pilot scored such a bull’s‑eye with so many of our actors. I thought Tamzin did a really good job. It’s hard to say why things didn’t work out. Ultimately, it’s obvious Emilia Clarke was born to play that part.”

Cogman also noted that HBO somehow gave Game of Thrones a second chance, something which is rare in the industry. The pilot episode was a $10 million disaster for HBO. It is a relief for the fans that they didn’t cancel the show altogether. James Hibberd’s Fire Cannot Kill a Dragon, which is bound to have a lot more behind-the-scenes bits from Game of Thrones, comes out Oct. 6 and is now available to pre-order.

What do you feel about these revelations? Let us know in the comments below.







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Game of Thrones’ Maisie Williams utterly missed Sword Fighting while filming Season 2

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Game of Thrones’ Maisie Williams utterly missed Sword Fighting while filming Season 2

Arya Stark was undoubtedly one of the finest warriors on Game of Thrones. Her use of weaponry was unmatched, and she could take down foes much bigger in size than herself. It all started way back in season 1 when Ned Stark employed Syrio Forel to give her ‘dancing’ lessons. The actor who played Syrio Forel, Miltos Yerolemou, recently talked to Collider about his experience on the set. He also revealed that Maisie Williams, who played Arya Stark, had grown quite fond of the lessons. She really missed them in the second season of the show.

He said, “Even though we had stunt doubles who were brilliant at what they did, they never got a chance to film any of the stuff because … And Maisie, herself, is a dancer — as you can see as her fighting develops through the show. All of that is her because she’s a natural. And so, the two of us just were in our element. We relished that. In fact, I remember Maisie saying to me when she was filming Season 2 — I think I met her at a convention and she said, “I really miss doing the sword fighting,” because I think in Season 2 she didn’t get to do hardly any. And she was like, “I really, really miss it.”

He continued, “It was her very first job that she’d ever done. She was 13 years old. She was still at school. Maisie had an amazing mom that read her the bits that she couldn’t read because those bits were quite adult. She had a really supportive mother. And the team around her really looked after her.”

What do you think of Maisie’s sword fighting skills? Tell us in the comments below!







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Miltos Yerolemou reveals the secret behind Syrio Forel’s Amazing Last Battle Scene

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Miltos Yerolemou reveals the secret behind Syrio Forel’s Amazing Last Battle Scene

Game of Thrones became one of the most successful shows of the past decade due to a variety of factors. Highly realistic fight scenes were one of the reasons why the show became so popular. Some characters, like Arya Stark’s teacher Syrio Forel, did not have much screen time, but their popularity skyrocketed nonetheless. His last appearance on the show where he fights his last battle while protecting Arya is one of the most beloved fight scenes amongst the fans. Miltos Yerolemou, who played the role, revealed how they made the scene look so realistic.

Yerolemou explained to Collider, “The team on Game of Thrones were fantastic. Let’s be absolutely straight here — the Hungarian stuntmen were the people who really made me look good, because they flipped and fell over, and reacted to my movements in such a way that made it look even more phenomenal. So, it’s a collaborative effort, like it always is.”

Ultimately, it’s a matter of creating the choreography and then making sure that you just practice it. In the end, with the Lannister fight, I think we spent a few days. But also, part of mine and Maisie’s agreement or deal was that we made sure that we did everything ourselves. So, even though we had stunt doubles who were brilliant at what they did, they never got a chance to film any of the stuff because …

So, it’s a collaborative thing. Ultimately, it was having people that just created really good choreography and then we just worked our butts off.”

What do you think of Syrio Forel’s last scene? Tell us in the comments below!







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WarnerMedia Chief Jason Kilar talks about HBO’s success and Game of Thrones prequel

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WarnerMedia Chief Jason Kilar talks about HBO’s success and Game of Thrones prequel

Game of Thrones’ first prequel House of The Dragon has already caused a huge stir amongst all the fans around the globe. The upcoming series based on the Dance of The Dragons focuses on a civil war that nearly destroyed Westeros prior to the events of Game of Thrones. HBO has already showcased the key players in the acting roster, hyping up the fans even more. WarnerMedia Chief Jason Kilar recently talked about HBO’s success and Game of Thrones prequel in a virtual appearance at the MoffettNathanson Media and Communications Summit.

I’d argue we’ve done more for theatres in 2021 than anyone else in Hollywood, by far,” Kilar declared. “There will be those stories that are so epic in scope and fit a certain sensibility that we feel that an exclusive theatrical release makes sense. … But there will be other stories that are different, that we actually think hew much closer to what we’re seeing this year in terms of movies that are available on HBO Max the same day that they’re made available to the exhibition. It’s going to be fascinating to see how that all evolves.”

WarnerMedia Chief Jason Kilar talks about HBO’s success and Game of Thrones prequel

When asked about the long-awaited prequel to Game of Thrones, House of The Dragon, Kilar said, “I’m just so excited because the world that exists in Westeros and the broader landscape and the characters,” he said. “The Targaryens are about as crazy as they get. It’s literally the essence of good drama.”

Are you excited about the upcoming prequel? Talk to us in the comments below!







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