Casting the minor characters
By Winter Is Coming on in Casting, Speculation.

We know that most, if not all, of the remaining actors in the pilot will belong to British Actors’ Equity. Certainly at least a few more of the major roles will be filled with, if not exactly big names, experienced and known actors that belong to the guild. The minor characters however will all go to local and no-name actors.

Equity’s website has a directory of actors that belong to the guild. There aren’t a lot on there, but it is fun to browse the directory and see which actors match up to the looks of some of the minor characters. Characters like Hullen, Ser Rodrick, Luwin, Illyrio, etc. all have small amounts of screen time and will probably be cast with some of these unknowns.

When browsing the directory you can specify what region you want to look in. Northern Ireland has a relatively small contingent but it is likely that NI-based actors will be prefered by the producers since they have to spend a certain amount of money on local cast and crew. Doing some more research I turned up a couple of Northern Ireland casting agencies with searchable actor directories, Sashaze Talent Agency and Dealers Agency. Both of these have more actors to look through than Equity’s website. It’s no guarantee that all of these actors are Equity members, but looking at their credits I would assume that most are.

Yeah, this probably isn’t as exciting as speculating whether Sean Bean will get cast as Ned or arguing whether Gillian Anderson or Saffron Burrows makes the better Catelyn. But it is a fun diversion nonetheless. So channel your inner casting director and see if you can find the perfect actor for the minor characters of the pilot!


53 Comments

  1. WinterIsComing
    Posted May 20, 2009 at 12:06 pm | Permalink

    Just to start things off, here are a couple I found:

    Gared
    Irri or Jhiqui

  2. Silverstar
    Posted May 20, 2009 at 12:44 pm | Permalink

    Ooo, fun. This will keep me occupied for a while :)

  3. Anonymous
    Posted May 20, 2009 at 1:02 pm | Permalink

    Holy crap good choice on Irri/Jiqui

  4. Marko
    Posted May 20, 2009 at 1:02 pm | Permalink

    Too bad the Equity database is still being build and we don’t have access to all the actors (which also means we can’t check if some interesting potential candidates are Equity members or not). Nevertheless, it’s a good idea and I like the initial selection ;)

  5. Silverstar
    Posted May 20, 2009 at 1:15 pm | Permalink
  6. Graegor
    Posted May 20, 2009 at 1:21 pm | Permalink

    NI native Martin McCann (‘the Pacific’) already has an HBO connection. Been meaning to put his name forth for a while, but I can’t seem to find a role he’s suited for. Any ideas?

    http://www.dealersagency.co.uk/showactor.asp?ID=24

    http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0564901/

  7. Anonymous
    Posted May 20, 2009 at 1:28 pm | Permalink

    auditions for 4 of the minor characters took place recently in Northern Ireland. I know this as my son auditioned for one of the roles. No decision until end of June.

  8. Silverstar
    Posted May 20, 2009 at 1:30 pm | Permalink

    Ooo, which role? Can you say?

  9. Anonymous
    Posted May 20, 2009 at 1:34 pm | Permalink

    silver uh the guy you posted for rodrik cassel is in memorium….

  10. Anonymous
    Posted May 20, 2009 at 1:34 pm | Permalink

    He auditioned for Bran, not sure about the others. Sorry

  11. Dan
    Posted May 20, 2009 at 1:39 pm | Permalink

    I’m only through the first three books, but I wouldn’t call Bran a minor character…Good luck to your son though, that would be a great break! (Assuming he isn’t someone who has already had a break)

  12. Silverstar
    Posted May 20, 2009 at 1:39 pm | Permalink

    So he is. I stupidly was only really looking at the photos.

    Bran, eh? That’s not really even a minor character – could turn out to be a big one! Good luck to your son :)

  13. Anonymous
    Posted May 20, 2009 at 1:47 pm | Permalink

    Sorry I should have said these where children’s characters not minors. Thanks for your good luck wishes!!

  14. Silverstar
    Posted May 20, 2009 at 1:50 pm | Permalink

    Aha, children’s characters. Maybe Sansa, Bran, Arya, and Rickon then. Or Myrcella and Tommen. They’re all in the pilot.

  15. Dan
    Posted May 20, 2009 at 1:50 pm | Permalink

    Hmmm, I would guess than that the other 3 being cast are Sansa, Arya and Joffrey???

  16. Anonymous
    Posted May 20, 2009 at 1:56 pm | Permalink

    Will update post as soon as I find out who the other characters were.

  17. Dan
    Posted May 20, 2009 at 1:59 pm | Permalink

    Yay! Inside info is fun!

  18. Marko
    Posted May 20, 2009 at 2:02 pm | Permalink

    I love the opportunities the internet provides nowadays. Thank you ‘Mum’, and good luck. You could not have found a better place to share this with others.

  19. Aoede
    Posted May 20, 2009 at 2:42 pm | Permalink

    Your man McCann looks a Bronn, though I haven’t a clue as to his acting ability or range. But IMHO, Bronn’s on the high end of minor characters.

    This here kid could probably do Pypar — he’s fairly short and ‘s described as “slim”. No sticking-out ears, unfortunately.

    She‘s really pretty. I’m sorry, that has no relevance whatsoever to the topic at hand, but seriously.

    This look like a potential Yoren to you?

    A thought: we need to find some sort of martial arts person or something to do Syrio. Not much talking and he dies fast, but he needs ‘em tricks.

    He‘s a bit pale for a Dothraki, but he’s got the martial arts and etc. on his resume, so he could probably go for one of Dany’s bloodriders.

  20. Njord
    Posted May 20, 2009 at 4:23 pm | Permalink

    My question with minor characters is- as some have suggested- will those characters whose role starts rather small, and over the course of the series become important, even be cast?

    Will they cut out Theon, Davos, etc. Minimize their roles? At first, they’re not important in terms of the plot-lines, but several characters do become crucial later on.

    While we can’t be sure the television show will ever even get that far, we also probably hope the minor characters that become somewhat important, or even have temporarily important roles, are cast with foresight. I hope they don’t gloss over the importance of these smaller characters when casting the pilot.

  21. Njord
    Posted May 20, 2009 at 4:30 pm | Permalink

    I mean, thinking of budget concerns and such if they intended to get a solid, respectable BBC involved or British actor for a smaller character like Theon, hoping the show is successful, I guess that would neccessitate glossing him over, or excluding him, from his small early appearances.

    What would we prefer- to see a character like Theon depicted as often as he is in the novel, or to see him cut from the beginning of the series, but then brought in as an actor that they couldn’t have afforded normally if they’d done that?

  22. Aoede
    Posted May 20, 2009 at 4:53 pm | Permalink

    The thing is, Theon’s betrayal has virtually no impact if we don’t see him right at the start. Know what I mean?

  23. Anonymous
    Posted May 20, 2009 at 5:09 pm | Permalink

    To heck with Irri or Jhiqui, I want to see Karen Hassan a bit more than that. Nice find winter!

  24. Njord
    Posted May 20, 2009 at 5:12 pm | Permalink

    Aoede, I really agree but despite their alleged fandom, if Benioff and HBO get caught up in the technicalities of producing a show; the budget, casting calls, etc. and opt- if even financially- to shrink the cast by cutting a character like Theon, the late story will be vastly impacted negatively and, as of yet, we don’t know if they’ll do that or not.

  25. Aoede
    Posted May 20, 2009 at 5:17 pm | Permalink

    Well, obviously I’m not a TV exec, me, but it seems that if Theon’s early appearances are relatively few, then having a good actor guest-star — even if it’s a somewhat famous/expensive actor, which is not necessary for quality — still wouldn’t add up to all that much.

  26. Njord
    Posted May 20, 2009 at 5:18 pm | Permalink

    Aoede, that’s true. I suppose they can just bring him on in limited capacity rather than with some season-long contract. I didn’t think of that. Guest star credits and such would solve my issue with budget I think. Good point.

  27. Anonymous
    Posted May 20, 2009 at 5:38 pm | Permalink
  28. JG
    Posted May 20, 2009 at 5:43 pm | Permalink
  29. JG
    Posted May 20, 2009 at 5:45 pm | Permalink

    Aoede, good call on bloodrider! Looks ideal.

  30. Anonymous
    Posted May 20, 2009 at 5:45 pm | Permalink

    JG like that for Payne

  31. Aoede
    Posted May 20, 2009 at 6:11 pm | Permalink

    Ditto, probably because of the pale eyes. But I can see where you’d get Thoros of Myr.

  32. WinterIsComing
    Posted May 20, 2009 at 6:31 pm | Permalink

    Lots of great suggestions here!

    Anon: Thanks for the info about the auditions! Any more details you could provide would be greatly appreciated.

    If you don’t mind me asking, how old is your son? Just curious to see what age range they are looking to cast for the role.

    Good luck to your boy! This is a potentially huge role. Congrats on getting an audition!

  33. Chenz
    Posted May 20, 2009 at 8:07 pm | Permalink

    Will the series be released on Sep.? Who knows the exact date? cant wait…

  34. Aoede
    Posted May 20, 2009 at 8:36 pm | Permalink

    Won’t be released this year and probably not next year, according to what I’ve read here and elsewhere.

  35. JG
    Posted May 20, 2009 at 8:44 pm | Permalink
  36. Aoede
    Posted May 20, 2009 at 8:46 pm | Permalink

    Ah, but can he sing? :D

  37. Chenz
    Posted May 20, 2009 at 9:22 pm | Permalink

    thanks, Aoede, a long long time to wait

  38. JG
    Posted May 20, 2009 at 10:24 pm | Permalink

    Aoede: lol, was just thinking that!

  39. Rimshot
    Posted May 21, 2009 at 3:09 am | Permalink

    This is weird because alot of the people you are speculating about are people that I’ve worked with. I had the pleasure to be on set on ‘City of Ember’ when Mark Mulholland filmed his last ever scene. He was playing an official portrait painter who was painting a portrait of Bill Murray’s character, Mayor Cole.

    Also, I worked with Martin McCann a few years ago on a crime reconstruction program. I was the detective interviewing him. His career really took off after Sir Richard Atternborough cast him in ‘Closing The Ring’.

    I’m glad to hear that auditions have started. I haven’t heard anything yet but sometimes we are put forward for minor roles (if the face fits…!)

    I was going to wait to see if any of you folk found this but I’ll stick it on now…

    http://www.extrasni.com

    This is the extras agency I’m with and probably the one that will supply extras and featured extras (and possibly minor speaking parts) to GOT. This is the biggest extras agency in NI. I’m in there but I’m not saying who (I’m male BTW which narrows it down to about 400!)

    I’m working on a TV show for them on Monday so if I hear anything about this I’ll let you know.

  40. Silverstar
    Posted May 21, 2009 at 3:34 am | Permalink

    Even more faces to play with :)

    Thanks Rimshot.

    And I’m going to attempt not to completely mess up my post formatting the next time too.

  41. Anonymous
    Posted May 21, 2009 at 7:52 am | Permalink

    My son is 9. He was the oldest boy from his agency to audition for the role of Bran.

  42. WinterIsComing
    Posted May 21, 2009 at 7:56 am | Permalink

    Anon: Wow. Very interesting. It looks like they are casting the exact age of the character. Bran is listed as 8 in the script. Makes sense since the issue of the actor outgrowing the role a few years down the line is more present with an older actor.

    Thanks for the info!

  43. Brude
    Posted May 21, 2009 at 10:41 am | Permalink

    That is very interesting about your son’s age. 9 is young – and it’s a big role to be saddled on such a young actor. It will require a very special kid to pull it off. It’s possible they are first trying to find that perfect, special kid who is exactly the right age at first and if not they’ll expand the search some.

    Tell your son to ‘break a leg’ (and then make sure he understand that really means ‘good luck.’) :-)

  44. Anonymous
    Posted May 21, 2009 at 2:52 pm | Permalink

    Breaking a leg would be especially appropriate for Bran.

  45. Livvey
    Posted May 22, 2009 at 10:12 am | Permalink

    LOL!
    And such interesting news indeed!!

  46. Anonymous
    Posted May 24, 2009 at 11:33 am | Permalink

    Dan was spot on with his guess of the other 3 children’s characters that they have started casting in Northern Ireland.

  47. Anonymous
    Posted May 24, 2009 at 2:32 pm | Permalink

    What about MANCE RAYDER? He is in the pilot too, albeit very briefly…

  48. Anonymous
    Posted May 24, 2009 at 4:00 pm | Permalink

    Bruce Campbell yeah British actors equity tra la la

  49. sue
    Posted June 12, 2009 at 3:28 am | Permalink

    my son has just had a recall for Bran, big part, I know he's up to it, just hope he get's the cance.

  50. Silverstar
    Posted June 12, 2009 at 3:37 am | Permalink

    Good luck to your son, Sue!

  51. sue
    Posted June 12, 2009 at 5:27 am | Permalink

    thank's Silverstar, nice to know I'm not the only human awake at this time!!

  52. Silverstar
    Posted June 12, 2009 at 5:38 am | Permalink

    I'm a Brit … I've been up and awake for hours ;)

    When I count as human or not, I'm not sure …

  53. sue
    Posted June 12, 2009 at 8:09 am | Permalink

    my son is 9 too he is very grown up for his age but quite small which is a help I guess


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