George R. R. Martin has posted on his Not A Blog regarding the press release. He confirms that filming will be in October. He also gives some history on the Paint Hall, including an informative video, and teases that some more “exciting news” about the pilot is on the horizon.
At last it can be told.
The news has finally been made public, so I’m finally free to whoop and holler and share the great news — the HBO pilot of A GAME OF THRONES will start filming in October, in Northern Ireland. The announcement was made in Belfast. Here you go:
Yes, I’m thrilled. Ireland should be a great place to film. And the facility we’ll be using, the Paint Hall, is amazing as well:
Before it was a film studio, the Paint Hall was part of Belfast’s famous Harland & Wolff Shipyards, where the TITANIC and many other ships were constructed. The facility is pretty titanic as well. Of course, all of us connected with A GAME OF THRONES are hoping we’ll fare somewhat better on our own maiden voyage.
Yes, Parris and I will be going over to Ireland this fall to see at least part of the filming. Not for the whole shoot, alas, I don’t have time for that… but we have to be there for at least part of it. Maybe we’ll see some of you in a Belfast pub.
There’s lots of other exciting news on the pilot as well, but nothing I can share. Sorry, lips are sealed. You’ll have to wait for Mr. Benioff and Mr. Weiss… and HBO.
Winter Is Coming: George stole my thunder a bit on this one as I had planned to make a blog post today looking more in-depth at Northern Ireland and the Paint Hall. Of particular interest is the video link he posted that states that Northern Ireland Screen is offering the Paint Hall free of charge, in addition to a $1 million grant, providing that the production use the whole facility and spends at least $4.8 million on N. Ireland cast and crew. I suspect this had a lot to do with the selection of this region and, specifically, this facility. This seems to be a great way to keep the budget manageable and means that they can spend more money on sets and cast to help make this production of the highest quality.
Also, regarding his mention of more exciting news, one would have to imagine he is referring to possible casting decisions. I have already speculated that these should be coming shortly and I think he is partly referring to them. But the way he kinda pauses and mentions HBO there at the end makes me somewhat suspicious he may be referring to something even bigger. I may be reading too much into it and maybe my excitement is getting the best of me, but could he be hinting at HBO planning to announce they will be picking up the series?