George R. R. Martin News

GRRM’s impressions from the set

George R.R. Martin has finally arrived in Belfast and put up a quick update in which he shares with us his first impression of the Paint Hall sets:

Ashford Castle has some impressive halls and chambers… but nothing to compare to the high hall of the Eyrie, and the throne room in the Red Keep of King’s Landing. Hot damn.

I’d say more, but in a few minutes we’re off to Castle Black and the Wall.

Hear Me Roar: This briefing surely adds some more fuel to the fire of fan excitement. I am positive George will only have good words for the Castle Black set as well. When these story locations hit the screen in their polished form, they will look even more impressive, and I cannot wait for that moment.


  • Nice to here GRRM’s opinions about the set. Looks like everything was aproved.
    So what? We need some photos from all that stuff…

    Where are our Ninja Spy Team?….C’mon guys you can do it!!!

  • I would love to carry out a spy operation in the Paint Hall – but security there is really high.

    Castle Black is only really visible from outside the quarry, difficult to get inside with their security too.

    Wondering if HBO could be persuaded to allow visits to the set – after all they could probably charge tickets and make a bit of money too, although they are unlikely too before the programme has aired, risks of unregulated photos seeping out would be too high, but assuming sets would remain largely intact due to the chances of series 2 being commissioned, there would be a window to allow visits.

    I for one would be really interested to see the sets, even after screening, it’s something I’m very curious about, the whole black art of faking these environemnts for the screen (whether for TV film – or Computer games, which I’ve had some expereince of).


  • Martin. Stay away from the set. I hear (not here ;P) securityhas been pitching tesspassers out of the Moon Door!

  • Really looking forward to seeing the Red Keep throne room. Especially Jackson’s take on the Iron Throne.

  • Lord Ned’s Head: Martin. Stay away from the set. I hear (not here ;P) securityhas been pitching tesspassers out of the Moon Door!  Quote  Reply

    Well, so long as I can grab a few shots on the way down …. might be worth it to get some much sought after shots of the Eyrie :)


  • So, is HBO footing the bill for GRRM’s stay at Ashford Castle? I checked their website, apparently Conde Nast named it the #2 resort in all of Europe! It looks beautiful.

    Anyway, as for getting pitched out the Moon Door, probably won’t be so bad since it’s likely only 5 feet off the ground, with a nice big pile of cushy mats for you o fall on just 3 feet down. Hell, if I was on set I’d get someone to pitch me out the Moon Door, just so I could tell everyone I did it.

  • In honest, praises from GRRM himself doesn’t mean SO much to me.
    What’s going to say? “Oh the sets were… meh! just ok. Maybe if they add some CGI later they could work.”
    That doesn’t mean I think less of the production team, just that some comments aretoo biased to be taken as objective.

  • BTW, some images like that of the Eyrie by Nasmith are so iconic and wondeful that it will be hard indeed to erase from memory or substitute for the new interpretation from the show, dont you think?

    Peter Jackson did see that on Lotr and apply the “if you can’t beat them, join them” motto, by hiring Alan Lee and John Howe as conceptual artists.

  • Caedes,

    I was thinking the very same thing. I guess I can accept King’s Landing being yellowish instead of red, but the Eyrie is so hauntingly perfect in that painting that I will be all-caps in Castle-gate if HBO scroos that one up.

  • Mongerel,

    What I was trying to say was not in the line of “OMG! This isn’t Naismith’s Eyrie!! This is going to suc*!” but more on the “Wow, that’s amazing!… almost as perfect as Naismith”.

    Take for example the Kingsguard three-crest helmets. I don’t like them at all, far too much Dungeons & Dragons to me… but that would not stop me from watching and enjoying the series, no sir. Just leave a little bit of a “what if” feeling about that.

    And, of course, in the end the final result could be even better that we expected!

  • Not sure if this has been posted already, but I found a little more from Lena Headey about playing Cersei on her Facebook page:

    I haven’t read the books either, so i just go with the scripts , i know she’s paranoid and power hungry and ferociously maternal .. a great mix to play .. underneath a smooth exterior she’s a little nutty ..
    It’s on the discussion board, under ‘Game of Thrones’.

    Not much we haven’t heard before, but still fun to read :)

  • Re: set photos

    I’m just as anxious as anyone to see the show, but I think I’d rather wait and see some of these sets in the final production (not to say I *wouldnt* take a gander at any released set pictures if HBO were to be so kind).

    For one thing, I *really* get annoyed with all the nitpicking about *unfinished -pre-production* material (ie all the ” – Gates”) Everyone has an opinion, sure, and this is certainly the place to be discussing likes/dislikes about what we’re seeing in regard to GOT, but, given some of the comments that have been posted, I think some people are criticizing what they’re seeing waaaaaaay too early. Very little of what we’ve seen so far is being shown as it will appear on screen when the show finally airs. If any rough photos of these SETS are released, those kind of comments are inevitable. Alas. I suppose my option is to simply skip over those comments :)

    Secondly, and this is just my own personal preference, I’d rather wait to see the finished Iron Throne and Eyrie when the show airs so as not to “ruin the moment”. I know that oftentimes when I get a chance to see something as its being built, its hard for me to appreciate the final image without visualizing it in all the previous rough stages. I think most of us have a very specific, and awesome mental image of what some of these major elements look like. I for one would like to have that “omg, that’s incredible!” moment when we first get a glimpse.

    Things I’m anxious to see : The Wall, the Iron Throne, the Eyrie, the Dragons, the Others (in that order) :)

    So for now, and for me, its enough to hear GRRM’s take on what he’s seeing. “Hot damn.”

  • Rahbur,

    Keep in mind that some of the material you are eager to see –even in still form—most probably will be packaged as a “Making Of” promo special to air on HBO before the series starts or saved for the DVD as an extra feature…That’s where HBO will make its “extra money” on the set tours. :)

  • DH87,

    Yes, yes … I realize that :) And I’ll probably watch it and spoil the magic for myself all on my own ! Or maybe … close my eyes while my husband watches it? Then he can tell me, “Okay … it’s over… but that was awesome!” :) Kidding, of course.

    Seeing those things in all their post-production glory would be ideal, but, as I check this site every day and have watched every video/viewed every image HBO has put out so far, I’ll likely watch any “making-of” from here on out.

    Btw – my husband has only read part of GoT ( I cant get him to finish it = D – some excuse about an Master program, raising children, etc etc … ) but I told him that, at this point, it would be good if he didnt finish the book. He’s read enough to gain an interest in the show, but not enough that he’s spoiled any major plot surprises when he watches it. I think it’ll be fun to get a “fresh” perspective on the show, first hand :)

  • Rahbur,

    Yes, despite any resolutions on our part, we won’t be able to resist looking at anything, before, during, or after. If Googlemaps releases a satellite photo of a wolf carcass, we’ll be on it like white on rice. After all this time, why try for self-discipline now?
    If you don’t urge your husband to finish GOT beforehand, I recommend a pact where he is not allowed to say, “But didn’t they get married?” or “Which ones are supposed to be the Lancasters?” or other innocent remarks that can spoil your first-run experience. Save the questions for the reshowing at 11 PM ET and mitigate stress on the marriage.

  • My first thought when reading GRRMs quote was “What they’re filming some Dunk and Egg stuff as well?????”

    Of course the Ashford Castle he means is the one he stayed at in Galway and not the one Dunk had his first Tourmey at.

  • Hi Guys, just to confirm George was on set both Monday and Tuesday this week. He was chatting to the crew and actors alike and getting a feel for the set.

    I can confirm i was chatting to him and he is a most amicable man, who assures me the next books are on the way!! p.s: on mentioning dragons to him, he replied “ah those pesky dragons, troublesome creatures”.

    Eyrie shoot finished. Castleblack and the new nightwatch recruits the rest of the week. Also heard that next week, some extras have been called as Ned’s bodyguards, so possible ambush by the kingslayer scenes being shot!

  • Edric,

    Thanks for the update. Its very rare that we hear where they are with the filming and whats going on at the sets. It’s nice to hear again from George that he is indead “close” to being done. Of course we’re heard that before, but I really sort of believe it this time! :D

  • burth,

    I must admit NATO was my first association, too.
    But the rest of it, I like very much. Espeacelly the weapon and the candle stick.
    There is also some red color spots on the biggest bird. It looks like blood to me.

  • Hi all, just been talking to my pal who was an extra on set at the Eyrie Monday and Tuesday past. Both days were taken up filming the champions fight scene.It has been shot slightly differently from the book(obviously can`t say how) but I don`t think this will detract from the action in any way.
    One highly qualified source was heard to say the swordplay is as good if not better than anything to come out of Hollywood. This is one scene ( among many) I am really looking forward to seeing. I would rather wait until the show airs than see any dodgy spy shots though. I think we will have a full trailer to dissect in five or six weeks(just an educated guess), which isn`t to long to wait in the grand scheme of things.

  • Two Feathers,

    Sometimes I wonder if I didn’t read these little teases the waiting would be more bearable, but I just can’t help myself… Two Feathers, you are a great source for all our hungry fans! (and thank to Edric as well, two quick updates, very nice!)

  • burth: Oh, new picture on MGoT, featuring a NATO-designed table in the red keep  Quote  Reply

    More furniture.!!!…brace yourselves. I guess HBO had a right good laugh at chair gate after all.

  • Mean. Who’ll be the first to have a cry about the NATO sideboard? Is the scabbard on the sword too ornate? The candle holder too Egyptian? The fresco too pseudo-oriental?

    Anticipating the nerdrage is almost as exciting as the actual show related stuff.

  • GaR,

    I don’t like it. I find it ugly. No special reason here. Not a dealbreaker whatsoever also. Just it isn’t a piece of furniture I would like to have in my castle or fortress or whatever.

    Also, why a picture of some, undefined, nondescript cabinet? There’s nothing here that can be related to ASoIaF directly.

    All in all, it’s better than nothing. Keep’em coming, HBO!

  • dizzy_34,

    Maybe it is colored stone, but the red spots are pretty visible on the biggest green bird, and they do not look to me like the integral part of the birds body.
    For example the orange bird have red color on the wings and tail, but it is clear that is the colour of painting itself.
    Those spots I am talking about do not look like they belong to the painting.
    Or it s just me, imagining things.

  • The Rabbit: Two Feathers, Thank to bot of you, Two Feathers and Edric.We appreciate very much your info, but just be careful to not get in trouble.  Quote  Reply

    I always try to be carefull Rabbit.I just try to convey my enthusiasm while not crossing the thin line of detail disclosure.I hope my posts help boost other fans excitement and anticipation for the show and not upset HBO. As long as I always remain relatively vague and don`t describe specific details hopefully I will remain on top of the thin ice.And its good P.R. for the show.

  • The style of this mural is a little more Byzantine than I anticipated, but in a sense it is fitting, if King’s Landing is mean to have a more Mediterranean feel. It is just different from the northern Gothic style that is usually associated with fantasy.

  • Two Feathers: I always try to be carefull Rabbit.I just try to convey my enthusiasm while not crossing the thin line of detail disclosure.I hope my posts help boost other fans excitement and anticipation for the show and not upset HBO. As long as I always remain relatively vague and don`t describe specific details hopefully I will remain on top of the thin ice.And its good P.R. for the show.  Quote  Reply

    I’m with you on that TF.

    It’s always a balancing act about what to say or not to say. I’m erring on the side of caution these days. Bit nervous about accidentally spilling some very big beans tonight though. Are you going?

    BTW – The moon door does look cool