Casting News

Engendering Gendry

A casting call has just gone out in the UK through several channels. They are on the look-out for Gendry, as can be discerned from the text, which also contains several minor, but interesting details:

Based on George R R Martin’s best-selling fantasy series “A Song of Ice and Fire”, “Game of Thrones” is a dark and complex tale of warring dynasties, epic in scale, with a haunting supernatural element. It defies genre and has a large cast of powerfully-realised characters for which we are looking for an amazing topend cast.

Aged 16-20. Working class. Big broad-shouldered blacksmith with thick black hair. Tall and muscular. Quite stubborn and not very sophisticated and quite wary and shy with strangers. He is unaware that he is the bastard son of the King.

This is a really great part in this series who will feature heavily in later seasons.

Number of episodes (Season 1): 2 episodes
First appearance: Episode 4
Season appearances: Seasons 1-4, maybe more

Hear Me Roar: My guess would be that the producers want to make sure they find the best possible Gendry (might be they have not been fully satisfied with the auditions so far), so they are widening the search. One can tell they are trying to pitch the series and the role, so enough actors would respond to make a quality decision. We learn from the description that the character is to appear in a couple of episodes in season one, the first one being Episode 4. Good luck to all those auditioning, hope HBO finds another great young actor for this role.


  • I think I'm first Hazaah
    Well at least we know that are really committed to finding a good actor for what appears to be a minor role at first that shows a certain amount of forward thinking on their part, cause Gendry wont become a major player till season 2.

  • It looks like FaB got the timing right with his speculative scripting on this one. He had Gendry appearing for the first time in episode four as well. Interesting that he will be making appearing in two episodes. Gendry only shows up once in the book. Either they added an extra scene or they moved Arya's first chapter from ACOK, where she starts her journey with Yoren, to the end of this season.

    • Ya, that could be a possibility. You see that sort of thing quite a lot in serial TV shows where they at the end of a season hint at how things will follow as a sort of collage of all the characters.

      You could show the newly crowned Renly, Theon leaving Winterfell to go to the Iron Isles, Arya et al leaving with Yoren, some shots of Joff as king and Cercei as Queen Regent etc.

      • *** SPOILER ***
        *** SPOILER ***
        *** SPOILER ***

        And of course, after this collage of scenes underscored with some atmospheric music, the final shot returns us to the now-smoking funeral pyre, and you-know-who emerging on screen before the credits role.

        *** SPOILER ***
        *** SPOILER ***
        *** SPOILER ***

    • I think that's a fair assumption about how Gendry might appear in a second episode. It's a good way to end Arya's story for the season…

      …we see her and the rest of the recruits in Yoren's band on the road leaving King's Landing. We at least understand that she has made it out of the city, that she's safe…for now.

      • Makes sense. Reminds me that for the LotR movies they brought forward Boromir's death from the opening of THE TWO TOWERS to the end of FELLOWSHIP, as it makes for a better climax. They may have decided that seeing Arya being knocked over is too much of a cliffhanger and wanted more resolution.

        More to the point, it's possible that Season 2 won't air until 18 months after Season 1, maybe longer. By ending on Arya hitting the road, they can suggest she's been on the road for some considerable time when she comes back in Season 2, whilst ending on the cliffhanger demands that they pick up immediately in Season 2, possibly with Maisie Williams looking significantly older than she did supposedly a few days or hours earlier. It gives them a bit more wriggle room to fudge people's ages and the passing of time.

        • Very good point. Especially because almost all the other storylines are in a state where the passing of time can be fudged…

          Robb continuing his military campaign, Dany and her dragons, Jon deciding to stay at the Wall, Bran ruling Winterfell, Sansa stuck in KL, etc.

          The only timeline that would cause a potential problem would be Tyrion returning to KL as Hand. They could get around this issue with the same tactic, moving Tyrion's first ACOK chapter to the end of the first season and having the season end with him already in KL as acting Hand.
          *END SPOILERS*

          If this is in fact the case, I must say great job to David & Dan for having the foresight to plan it this way and side-stepping a potential suspension of disbelief issue.

          • Dittos. Not that I'm considering this all, I REALLY hope that D&D do exactly this. It makes a lot of sense and would act as a great teaser for the next season.

        • Good point, and I like this idea. I've been a little worried about Maisie getting taller. I like how short and young-looking she was in Belfast when they filmed the pilot, and although I'm okay with aging-up characters, I think with Arya that it's important we get to see just how tiny and vulnerable she is in the wide violent world of Westeros.

          Maisie is already nearly a year older; I think they should definitely get her on the road by the end of Season 1.

  • That is interesting stuff.
    GRRM reported about that very casting, and todays call tells me that they had not found good candidate for the role yet.
    A possibilty = Would they cut Yoren out?

  • Interesting that they are calling form someone 16-20. I know they are aging characters up, but isn't Gendry like 14, tops, in the books? They've made Arya, what, 11? Their relationship (not necessarily romantic, but even just their friendship) seems weirder if he's like 20. I suppose they could be going for more of a big-brother vibe.

    • Gendry had the build of a grown man, despite his age. A way to do that is to just cast older, but with someone who has a young look in the face.

      I've seen 14 year-olds who were the size of grown men. We had a few when I was in 8th-9th grade. They more or less looked like they were 20. Pretty intimidating when you're only just starting your growth spurt at that age.

      That being said, I think they are pushing back everything a few years, so he could easily be 16 or 18 in the show.

  • He has the same age as Jon and Rob, no? If so, maybe they are looking or someone who may be 20 but looks youger… Is that a possibility?

  • Nice find HMR!
    My bet is the second second appearance is in the last episode. Varys tells Yoren he's got another young man for him, then pays a visit to Tobho Mott and they take Gendry…
    It would put Gendry back on the map for people who forgot about him and serve as an additional cliffhanger for season 2, leaving viewers to wonder what will happen to him and figuring he must be important if they showed him….

    • SPOILERS (shouldn't we assume comments on spoilers to have spoilers themselves?)

      I wonder if they are going to change the plot slightly so that Varys is the one that pulls Arya into the tunnels to hide her, and then he gives her to Yoren to take north. This would be so Varys would clearly be seen collecting heirs to all the great houses.

      • I don't know… it is still ambiguous on whose side Varys is, so I wouldn't show him doing such a pro-Stark move, espacially since it isn't in the books.
        It is understood however in Tyrion's conversation with Varys in ACOK that the latter is the one who arranged for Gendry to be sent to the wall before Cersei could find him and have him killed, so I can very well imagine they could decide to show it at the time it happens…

        • I can see the second Gendry episode being Varys arranging for him to go with Yoren, rather than seeing him in the first Arya scene from ACoK in the first season finale.

        • SPOILERS

          I'm pretty certain that Varys wants to put the Targaryens back into control, but first and foremost he wants to save his own skin.

  • Break a leg James. You should totally go for it!

    Might be you look a bit old for the role, but then so did the actors playing Robb and Jon to my eyes, until I got used to the idea that they are changing the characters – aging everyone up. You look of an age with those guys, and their characters were of an age with Gendry.

  • So I wonder if that casting side of Cersi talking with Catelyn about one of Robert's children who survived birth but was lost early in infacancy is part of a script. It was a deviation from the books that could have eliminated the need for Gendry (in the first season at least). I'm glad to see Gendry make the cut, I don't think Arya's story would have the impact it does without him.

  • So, Gendry will feature "heavily in later seasons", eh?

    We have been wondering whether or not they would be minimizing the childrens parts somewhat. Seems like at least Arya won't suffer that fate. Good thing? Oh yes! If it works, at least, but i am hopeful it will.

  • Wow, this is awesome! So much info in the call-out, it sounded more like a pitch for the series. I got excited all over again, thinking about watching Sean Bean visit Mott's armoury and talking to Gendry (Episode 4?). Cool stuff.

      • Sorry, nope, not seeing it. He somehow manages to look both too surfer dude-ish and too mature at the same time. And I know lots of people love it but having True Blood on your resume is big strike against in my book.

        • Really? If they'd said they'd cast Michelle Forbes, William Sanderson or Alexander Skarsgard in GoT in some role, I think a lot of people would be quite happy with that.

          • I haven't been able to sit through more than about 10 minutes of two or three episodes. Probably not the fault of the actors but there you go. I have liked Forbes and Sanderson in other things I've seen them in. So I would be happy to see them in GoT. Don't know Skarsgard at all. I like Anna Paquin, too, and I am continually amazed that she connected herself to this thing.

          • Whether it's your cup of tea or not, it's a pretty high quality show with a lot of really talented people involved. It seems like they upped the ante even more in this season and theres a whole bunch of new characters played by notable actors. Either way, I wouldn't be too worried if someone from TB ended up in GOT at some point.

            PS, I'm sure Anna Paquin has no regrets about being connected to "this thing." Its almost up there with The Sopranos and Sex and the City in terms of popularity and she hasn't really been a household name since the X-Men movies.

            PPS, William Sanderson is totally underused in True Blood. E.B. from Deadwood was in my opinion the second best character on that show and he played it to perfection I thought.

          • The third season premier had higher ratings than the Sopranos ever had. I think it's safe to say it's their most successful show to date. I read somewhere that it's beating the major networks in ratings for Sunday night. That's pretty impressive for a subscription channel.

          • Skarsgard?? I just watched the first 2 seasons of True Blood, and I never realized his name was Alexander Skarsgard or that he is the son of Stellan Skarsgard, who is AWESOME! Vampie Erik just got way cooler in my eyes.

          • The role that put Mr Skarsgard to my attention was in Generation Kill. From the trailer "Trombley. Trombley? Wake up, Trombley, you're missing the war."

          • Isn't he a bit old for the role, even with the aging-ups? I may be wrong, but I always thought Euron to be in his forties or so.

            (I actually was originally rooting for Nikolaj Coster-Waldau as Euron, that is after someone somewhere suggested that and it seemed immediately like a good idea.)

          • Stellan for Euron, Peter Stormarre for Victarion. Might as well have actual Scandinavians play the Ironmen.

        • Gonna have to completely disagree. I think it's one of the best shows currently on television. A bit campy at times, but as far as I know they are staying moderately close to how it all works out in the novels. I'd be happy with any of the main actors of the show getting some kind of role in GoT. The crap they have to do on True Blood means they can do just about anything IMO.

    • The body might fit, but I think he might be too old (don't see an age there) plus as others have stated he might be a bit too "surfer dude" for Gendry. I don't think it's a role they need some fantastic actor for though unless GRRM has something crazy planned.

      • Yes but pretty predictable no ?

        Knowing that the books should go to 7 in the best world, I'm sure that HBO wants to secure the actors for the long term in case of success of the series (at least for the characters that go beyonds AFFC)

          • I'd agree with that.

            It seems like they're pretty much going four season because the four books are all they have to go on at this point. Still, there are a lot of endings in ASoS, whereas AFfC seems to start a lot of more threads. Tyrion's business with his father makes a better bit of closure than we get in the typical "HBO series cut before its time."

          • Yea, there is quite a bit of "Hell Yeas" at the end of SoS and a decent amount of "closure" for just about everybody but the Starks – they get all around screwed and left hanging at the rock bottom. Most of AFfC is dealing with the aftermath of those events as well as introducing a few more "wrinkles in the fabric".

        • It will be a miracle of epic proportions if we actually get 7 seasons of Game of Thrones. Even The Sopranos and Sex and City (easily HBO's two biggest hits) each only went for 6 seasons. I think we should all prepare ourselves now for GoT getting 3-5 seasons tops–and that's assuming it turns out to be the smash hit we all hope it will be.

          • I think Sopranos and SatC would have continued if HBO felt they still had a story to tell. Didn't watch either of them but I would assume that somebody felt they had run their course and it was time to go. Broadcast networks may drag a popular series out as long as they can sell advertising but that's not what HBO does.

            This story has 7 years to tell, the only way it gets cancelled is if it isn't turning a profit.

          • A couple of points that help GOT: The Sopranos were in effect really 7 seasons, they just named the last two Season 6 Part 1 and Season 6 Part 2. Second, the plot of all these and many more was invented on the go (similar to what go_falcons says). With a planned span of the story, and a full outline that has an ending, HBO is more willing to go the whole hog, unless they are losing money on it (even in the longest of runs, after DVD sales and all). Some critical moments I can envisage: a) quality of the first season: unless it really sucks a**, it gets a pickup, even an early one (based on the premiere/HBO execs watching the entire season). At that point I'm pretty sure we can get 3 seasons. Possibly over more than three years (a slightly bigger break between 2 and 3?). b) At that point HBO takes some time, considers the sales, waits for the numbers. If they decide to go forward after a longer break, we get the entire story! It may just be that in the worst case they decide to condense it in fewer seasons, if the series is not a huge succes by then, and if necessary to cut costs for some reason. Unless there is an unforeseen financial calamity of some sorts, these are my guesses as to what will happen. Thoughts? :)

          • While I would not be content seeing only three seasons of Game of Thrones, I would understand if it went down that way.

            Only one or two seasons would suck, in my view.

            My hope is for the whole story to be told, of course. And to retain all the actors we start the series with for continuity's sake, though with the sprawling cast I also realize that would be nearly impossible.

          • Those shows were canceled because there was no more story to tell, I don't think HBO will be GOT's problem, if the show will be profitable it will be aired, the real threat imo is whether GRRM will keep up with the show and finish the books, this next few years are gonna be even more time-consuming for him and he's already not a very fast writer, in that case, if the show will catch up to the books there is a good chance of it being canceled.
            there is a third option, in which the show will catch up to the books and GRRM will set the layout of the rest of the story for the screenwriters and we'll have the 6th and 7th seasons before the books, but it's very unlikely.

          • A fourth option is that when (and if) the show catch up to the books, the screenwriters write themselves the end of the show, but it's also very unlikely.

  • Perfect role for an obscure teenage UK tele or stage actor who wants an opportunity for their star to rise faster than the norm. I wonder if the possibly expanded role for Gendry means added Arya scenes and also if the mention of four seasons means splitting CoK and SoS over 3 seasons, since CoK would be 13-14 episodes and SoS 17-18 that comes out to around 30-32 episodes, so CoK might actually have the a few chapters moved to 3rd season.

    • I'd guess they aren't talking about adding Arya scenes, just that in CoK and SoS, Gendry is a bit of a feature character in the Arya storyline(compared to season 1 at least.)

  • Spoiler?

    As far as I recall it's never shown how Gendy becomes a part of Yoren's group. That might be the scene they add. Previously mention CoK scene is highly likely as well.

  • Spoiler???

    I have a vague recollection of a scene where Arya and Gendry are talking about why the gold cloaks are after him and he says he has no idea, he was just swept up by someone at the blacksmith's and given to Yoren… or something.

  • I can see potential for one major change from the books if the series goes the distance: Bran's means of transportation. Anyone know how old Isaac Hempstead-Wright will be by season 4? If the kid hits a growth spurt, it's going to look ridiculous putting him on Hodor's shoulders, even if the actor is 6'10.

    • I don't know, kids grow. A growth spurt will just add to the realism as far as I'm concerned. Using a little person stand-in for a teenager would look even more ridiculous.

      • I second that. In addition, I think that he would be riding in a basket on his back. And, just a guess, but I think a 6'10" man with Kristian's build will have little to no difficulty carrying a non-obese 14-year-old in a decent harness.

  • I don't see it being an issue. If he's too big or heavy for Kristian to carry, then it's not that problematic to construct an apparatus for him to ride on majority of the time. They don't have to do everything the way it was in the books. I'm more interested in getting a good actor for the role.

  • This brings up a good point. While I'm glad HBO plans on sticking to the books, I do hope they can find a way to show things from different perspectives so that for fans of the books there's something additional to get out of the story. Prime example—a little bit more background and perspective from the characters, particularly the ones introduced in later books. We read the books through the eyes of a select group of characters. The HBO series will hopefully present the series in a more general way so we not only get the characters' thoughts and emotions, but also a broader sense of what's going on.

    • If the leaked pilot script is anything to go off of, this will certainly be the case.

      There's already one scene with Tyrion and Jaime before they leave for Winterfell, and I'm sure there will be more.

      • Yea definitely… the books took a character based approached to the viewpoints, whereas I can see the show taking a more story-line based approach. By that I mean: Winterfell storyline, Kings Landing storyline, The Wall storyline, etc. Anything and any characters within the current focus storyline would be fair game, whereas the book kept things limited to the specific viewpoint characters and their interactions. This would allow us to see things that we didn't "see" in the book, things that were told as stories or reminisced about.

  • Am I the only one that thinks we may get some casting news this week (possibly even Monday/tomorrow)?

  • This is horrendously off topic, and it may have been mentioned before…but has any ever noticed the anachronism for the first three books GoT, CoK and SoS. I warn you, the drink does make me see things that others don't in words though if sounded out it is essentially asking "Got cock sauce?"

    If this is deleted, I completely understand. But as of right now, I'm not sure if its funny or crude.

  • Any Ideas where this casting call is and is it an open thing. Im 23, big and dark i can look younger when clean shaven.

    I know I have no chance to actually land this role with no acting experience but would be a great experience just to try out for this role!

    • OK Update: got an e-mail from casting company. no longer casting and wasnt an open audition:

      They told me it has been cast but no guarantee that it wasnt just to prevent repeat e-mails!

  • I think that if we get more than two seasons, it will be hell of a miracle. Let's be realistic and honest, watchers don't relate to kids in movies or tv shows (at least most of them). And that's truth. And ASOIAF is full of important little kids – and even if we readers mostly love Arya or Bran etc, i dont think the same will happen in TV show. Readers will love them as they loved them in the book, but non readers, which are very important for succes of this show, will not. Even i have sometimes problems with kids in tv shows and movies. I can't describe it, but i can't relate to kids in shows, it seems less dramatic with kids or how to describe it. I know its weird, but hude amounts of people think of it that way.
    So even if i would love to GoT to be very succesfull with all my heart, but i think this show will have to struggle for viewers and it will be very tough to even get to the third season.

      • Well, have there really been any good dramashow that have had kids in major roles with truly good stories rather than silly/cute kid stuff? I think/hope that GOT will be the exeption to the rule. It seems noone have really given it a real shot.

        • The Wire's fourth season removed many central figures of the show completely and reduced the main character to a bunch of cameos, really. And who then filled all this time? It was bunch of kids. I'd say that season four of The Wire had about the same ratio of adults to children screen time as I imagine GOT having.

          And most agree that the fourth season is the best of the show and one of the best seasons of any tv show ever made. Everyone loved those kids.

          While some viewers may have problems with the kids, I'm sure there's as many people watching the show because of them. This is not a problem.

        • Yep, I will second the 4th season of The Wire is primarily focused on the kids. Quite possibly the best single season of TV I've seen.

    • You make a realy good point and I think this is part of why they aged up the main characters, but as I said, they aged them up so it won't be a problem, and besides, we still have the older characters, Ned, Tyrion, Robert, Cersei, etc and all the cool intrigues.

    • This isn't disney channel kids. This isn't network kids. It's not the Golden Compass It's not Narnia. If those are the sorts of kids you are thinking of, yeah, i understand the problem

      This is "Zombieland" kids. "Kick Ass" kids. "Aliens" Kids. "13" kids, "Kids" kids,. or, if you must, Pride and Prejudice kids. "The Professional" kids. That little girl in red in "Shindler's List." The kid losing a limb in "Master and Commander".

      And if you still hate kids, at least you get to watch them get tortured, Midaevil style. This ain't Eregon.

    • I agree with you that the kids are a delicate issue.
      It’s true that it is difficult to relate to children on screen, but that's mainly because good children actors aren't that common. We see a bunch of cute but not so well acting children on TV.
      Of course, since children are heavily featured in ASoIaF, HBO needs to nail theses castings.
      We don’t want any Narnia or Eragon!
      But I can think of a few examples of very good children actors, like Haley Joel Osment , Freddie Highmore , Saoirse Ronan , Dakota Fanning , to name just a few, and that gives me some hope for GoT. Hopefully, HBO and Nina Gold found some hidden gems that will only get better and better over the seasons (yes, season with an “s”!) while they gain maturity and experience.

      I have good faith in Isaac, because he seemed highly praised at the time he was cast. As for Sophie and Maisie, I like them already from the little we’ve seen in pictures and tweets, but I have to prepare myself for the possibility that some of the cast might not be as good as they should. I mean, good children actors seem to be REALLY HARD to find. Hopefully, it won’t be bad enough to ruin the series. So I put my trust in Nina Gold.

      Fingers crossed.

      • Wow, i just realized how much i would like to see just a tiny clip of Maisie, Sophie and Isaac acting. Theres that commercial with Isaac, but his part only lasted two seconds or so, and had no lines.

        • There is one important point here, IMHO.

          POV-structered original – wich implies kids (Arya, Sansa, Bran) are main, importnat characters.
          By reading the books, one sees the events through the "eyes" of those kids.
          The fact is that plot around those kids is not childish at all (one could argue Brans story partially).

          For example: Sansas POVs
          Sansa is naive, young girl, but then everything happens around her is not. It is all about the politics and intrigue (Littlefinger), about the war (Battle of the Blackwater), etc…

          In the series: there will not be POVs – one (viewer) will see the events without that "intermediare" of POV, and consequently there would not be impression that everything is going on around the kids.

          So, IMO, it is the story that matters in here.

    • I think I understand what you mean, here. Most people don't relate well to children in the more adult-themed shows because most shows don't incorporate those children into the more adult-theme of the show. They are secondary characters, almost, and, as someone else mentioned, these young characters are portrayed in a very "cute-ish" way most of the time. Lightening up their stories really weakens the darker, grittier feel for the adult viewer, and it was that darker more adult-feel that drew the person to the show in the first place. Given that, I can share your concern.

      But these are George R.R. Martin's characters, and this is HBO ^^ They definitely march to their own drum beat when it comes to what they can and cannot do to their characters, even the younger ones. As far as the casual viewer *liking* these young characters… I can only hope they at least realize the importance of these roles to the overall story of the show and feel compassion for them as their stories unfold.

      I think the favorite will be Arya,( maybe Jofferey ? ) the least favorite Bran ( based on storylines, not the actors portraying them ) and I don't see Daenarys, Rob, and Jon being viewed as *children* in the show, even though they are.

        • I can answer for my part. Bad guys are usually kinda amusing in tv/movies. I'm sure I'll like GoT-Joffrey and Viserys a lot more than their book counterparts.

      • I think this is the crux: children often act as 'cuteness relief' in films, much like comedic secondary characters (and often they ARE comedic; other times, only cute). What's more, even when they have real roles, they are very rarely real characters – by which I mean that usually the role of the child is to be an adjunct or accessory to the adults – a troublesome weight around their necks, or something that has to be protected at all costs, for instance. They're very rarely actual agents with minds and personalities and objectives of their own. So at the very best, they're dead weight in the story, and good productions don't dwell on them; at worst, they're aggravating assaults on continuity of tone, particularly in darker works.

        However: children don't have to be like that. If you put the children as lead characters, and make their stories be the stories you're telling, they can be just as engaging, if not more so, as/than adult characters. The fourth season of The Wire is a classic example: we care about the kids BECAUSE the series does.

        An example from cinema is Natalie Portman in Leon. It's an action film, but the main character, the main viewpoint, is the little girl. She doesn't make us detach from the film – she makes what would otherwise be a slick popcorn action film into a masterpiece by making us care. They do this by making Portman's character the viewpoint (not strictly, in that we see other scenes as well, but she's the main entrance point for the viewer), and by making her a 3D and believable character.

        So: I think that if the children are minimised it'll be disasterous. They'll be seen as annoying distractions from the serious business going on. But if they keep the children as POVs, I think it could be very powerful. A lot of the intrigue and violence will seem MORE intimidating when seen from the flawed perspective of a child. I don't think it should be followed 100% – the camera shouldn't be stuck on their shoulder – but I think, and hope, that there will be a lot of scenes linked by following children from one room to the next, lots of children discovering things, lots of focus on how the children react to things. Because it's only by making them central that they can make them work.

          • Somewhat, but she was already too pretty for the role then, even with that bad pageboy haircut. Her affect isn't right, either; part of what makes that movie work is how disturbingly sexy Matilda is (of course, little girls with her kind of background tend to be precocious), whereas Arya has no overt interest in boys or men.

          • Natalie Portman's Matilda was an excellent performance, garnering her immediate attention of producers and casting agents. I remember the buzz.

            As far as Isaac, Maisie, and Sophie go, I'm not worried at all. Jennifer Ehle went out of her of way to praise their talent and work ethic, and I have it on good authority Isaac in particular struck an especially poignant chord with the rest of the cast. In a word, "amazing." We already know Maisie is a literal ball of Arya-like energy, and Sophie was described as "Mini-Jenny," so well did she mime Ehle's posture.

            Granted, she'll have to do the same with Michelle Fairley now (and Fairley may well be the queen of good posture), but I am confident. And really, these kids are learning from the best now.

            In Nina Gold we trust.

          • We should make t-shirts with "In Nina Gold we Trust'

            Great points. I think it bodes well that the rest of the cast is talking about our child-actors. I have faith!

            Other than Ayra, Sansa, Bran, and Joffrey to some extent, are pretty taxing roles considering. I don't think many of the other kids roles will be as significant to the success of the show (maybe Robert Arryn). I would love Nina Gold to find us a dozenor so fantastic child actors, but having people who are just good as Jayne Poole, or Myca, aren't going to make or break the show.

      • Among the kids the favorite will probably be Arya (well and of course a near-feral Rickon). I don't see Sansa being as hated as she is by many who have only read the books though.

        But if they make it to season 2 we all know that Tyrion is going to be the 1 character which everyone latches onto.

        • Dunno about Tyrion. He's going to be popular, that's for sure, but Jon and Dany are more traditional protagonists, more mainstream. They're also more beautiful and that matters in tv more than in books.

          • I really think Tyrion will be the "anti-villain" of the piece, a term George Lazenby used to describe Al Swearengen in Deadwood.


            Those of us who have read the books have the luxury of knowing LF's manipulation of events, but for the TV audience he's probably going to be "the bad guy" for a while.


            Swearengen was never the protagonist, but one could argue that he and Bullock shared the spotlight.

  • If Treme and True Blood are any indication, I look for a season two pickup right about the time that Syrio meets Arya. Hopefully we will know by episode 3. This show is already generating way more buzz than either Treme or TB did at this stage in their inceptions. Yeah cost will be more of a concern, but if Thrones can be the network's flagship back to dominance then the extra finances should be something the network realizes as the cost of doing business.

    • I think it's a different product from those two.

      Treme (I assume, knowing little about it) is critic-fodder. It's so that HBO can say 'we show things by David Simon, writer of the Best Thing Ever! Look, critics love us, we're important, you should subscribe so that you can watch this Serious Cinerature". (No criticism there – I loved the Wire – but it wasn't massive). And also because if it's good it'll get them money from foreign rights and from DVD sets way, way into the future (the Wire wasn't big at the time, but its DVDs are stunningly reliable – they cost the same as when new, and are apparently being bought in the same quantities every year). It's a relatively cheap project that won't make them much but is probably pretty safe and that will really help their image overall.

      True Blood is mass-marketed pop-trash. Sure, it's HBO, so it's less trashy than it might be, but the idea is basically for something pretty light that the general audience can all sign up to. Yes, it's officially genre, but by now vampire romance is pretty mainstream. You don't need any buzz in advance for that.

      GoT is different. I think the idea will be to make it solidly successfully niche, as a baseline, and then hope that popularity and critical attention start bringing in crossovers. Its success depends, I think, ogiven its scale and probable expense, on bringing in people from the general audience, but I don't think that the general audience is going to be inherently interested. Yes, the historical soap opera element might bring some in, but it's a lot less accessible than something like The Tuders or Robin Hood. So to succeed, it's going to need a lot of buzz, to hit the ground running.


      And it's not going to be their flagship back to dominance. There's this little behemoth in the room called Boardwalk Empire.

      • I agree with you about Treme. That's exactly what HBO is doing. And it's already paying off, the show (which I loved) already has a pretty big online community and lots of critical acclaim. Sure, it's pulling the same numbers as The Wire did (so not so huge) but like you say, there's many sides to this thing. One being HBO's image.

        I would say that GOT has a very good chance of getting a second season. HBO usually gives its dramas a second season. Off the top of my head I can only come up with one drama that didn't make it to its second year; John From Cincinnati. And that's not too surprising, no one liked or understood that show. :) GOT also has hype like very few other shows of the channel (at this point of the production). And unlike most of the dramas they've done, GOT already has built-in audience in the book readers. One reason for ordering second season early on is to make it easier for producers to continue on with the series, while after the first season the channel really starts to look at dvd sales and ratings and all that.

        I really believe we'll get the second year. After that, well, that's when the real numbers game begins. Luckily there's not too many big genre shows airing anymore. This very well could be the next big thing, even though I don't want to set my hopes too high.

  • Now I want someone to pitch the Black Company to HBO. That way it could be in production right about when Game of Thrones is in its 4th or 5th season.
    Come on, who woundn't want to see Game of Thrones meets Band of Brothers?

  • perhaps they should go with someone more near maises age as far as she is 11ish he is 15ish… i would hate to think martin changes his plans for the books cuz i sorta saw gendrey and arya together at the end.. BUt thats just me…especialy when arya is wearing the acorn dress u can see gendrey scope her out a bit …robert+lyanna only this time it works…id vote for having a 14 yr old get the part. if they get a 20 something im not sure views would accept a 27 actor and maisie when it ends….and im fearful martin wont write the book as he intended for fear of the pedphile– however maybe he will or maybe he never intended an arya+gendrey. but arya looks proper age with maise–maybe a 20 yr old actor wont for gendrey—

    • It seems like you are forgetting that Maisie will be older too… She will probably be 18 when ADWD is filmed (if that would ever happen) and thats the earliest these two might "get together". I'm assuming that we won't get a new season per year, btw.

      Also, there really isn't much going on between them in the first books. There seems to be something in the air, but they could just make it so that Arya has a little crush on Gendry, and Gendry viewing Arya with a big brother kind of affection, which isn't too far from the books.

      • im just wondering tho- becuz marriges were setup and gendrey if dany takes the throne..would be next in line to be king–and his wife queen and their kids next….because dani cant get preggers… it makes sense that a stormlord would marry her for political reasons no matter the ages. Im worried that the TV show will influence martin rather than the other way around future books…id prefer to keep the 4-5 yr age gap between the two…wether its a crush or soemthing more…

        • Gendry is a bastard, so if Dany takes the throne (not guaranteed) and if she doesn't hate all Baratheons because of the Usurper (unlikely) and if she agrees with their idea that the Baratheons have the next best claim (possible) and if the two other heads of the dragon can't breed (who knows?) then Stannis would be the heir, and then his daughter, and then they would go back to earlier pureborn marriages for the next heir rather than looking at Gendry.

          Arya might get with Gendry later on (she's never been one for rules and highborn society), but it would certainly not be a betrothal unless the King, Queen, or High Septon absolved Gendry of his bastardy, which I don't expect will happen.

    • You do realize that the setting for this series is basically a medieval age, where it was the norm for 12 to 15 year old girls to be married off to 25, 30 even 40 year old men. Most viewers will know this and won't judge the show as endorsing backwards ideals, heck its was common in our own world for thousands of years and some countries still allow it. Many think The Hound is sick for being attracted to Sansa, she being 13 and him 26 I believe, but to the people of that time and world it is normal behavior, you must remember that.

      • Believe it or not, there is less evidence to support this than most people think. Peasant girls certainly usually didn't marry until at least 17 (their first menstruation also happened later, due to worse nutrition), and highborn girls were often betrothed earlier on, even in single digit ages, but they rarely married before 15 or 16, and the average is probably older. Then again, maybe GRRM doesn't know or disagrees with this.

        • My error, I meant that medieval age girls got engaged between 12 and 15, sometimes younger, but usually didn't marry till 17-20, so the father had time to acquire the dowry neccessary or for the groom, whether he be noble or peasant the time to collect the resources needed to support a bride.

        • We know that Viserys is worried that his sister at 13, may be "too young" for Khal Drogo's tastes. So even if GRRM has made it common in Westeros, it's still an issue in people's minds.

          However, there's the other side of this too, that even if an entire society does something that doesn't mean we can't observe and judge it as outsiders. GRRM's no slouch. He knows that he's writing this for a modern audience, and I don't think he puts his young heroines in these situations so we'll go, "Well, it's probably common then, so I'm sure it's okay." I think we're supposed to be uncomfortable.

  • HBO should try to get that Russian Spy Anna Chapman an audition for Shae, maybe get the Feds to release her into their care, that would get HBO an extra rating point or two.

  • Any word on this? Would be a dream come true, and I truly believe I could do the part justice. Would be such a fantastic adventure…still, all the best to everyone who's been blessed enough to be able to audition for this role and others! :)

    Jake Stormoen

  • Just a word on this, my sister (who is part of NYT- National Youth Theatre here in the UK) received this casting call via email along with some of her friends, a couple of whom she says went in for an audition. Will be interesting if they get the role.