Natalie Dormer originally auditioned for Melisandre, and other Game of Thrones tidbits


Lots of Game of Thrones stars auditioned for parts they didn’t get before landing their iconic roles. Take a look at what could have been:

Game of Thrones had one of the best ensemble casts in TV history, and it was very carefully put together. For a lot of these characters, it’s all but impossible to picture anyone else playing them, but some actors came close.

In his new new book Fire Cannot Kill a Dragon, James Hibberd to several Game of Thrones cast members about the characters they auditioned for but didn’t get, starting with Natalie Dormer, who became a fan favorite for playing the kind, crafty Margaery Tyrell…but it could have gone another way. “I auditioned for Melisandre,” Dormer revealed. “Then I got a call from my agents saying, ‘They loved you but want you to audition for another role.’ And I’m like, ‘Damn, this Melisandre role looks fucking cool!'”

"[Showrunners Dan Weiss and David Benioff] said, ‘There’s this character Margaery, and we’re still exploring what we’re going to do with her.’ You look back and realize Melisandre couldn’t have been anyone else, Carice [van Houten] did an amazing job, but I always had a chuckle on the couch when a Melisandre scene came on."

What do you think? Can you see Dormer playing Melisandre? She’s a talented actress with a lot of range, and I can see her turning on that mysterious remove Melisandre was so famous for. But I agree that it’s hard to picture anyone but Carice van Houten in the part.

Image: Game of Thrones/HBO

Next up: who did Liam Cunningham (Davos Seaworth) originally audition to play? “I first met Dan and David a year before [while auditioning] for a different character,” he said. “I’ve never told anyone this, but it was for Ser Jorah.”

Image: Game of Thrones/HBO

“Within five pages you know if a script is going in the trash can or not, and these I couldn’t put down,” Cunningham continued. “It’s like for an actor you finally found what you’re looking for. They told my agent they were ‘going a different direction,’ which is the nice way of saying you didn’t get the job. They added, ‘We have some more characters coming in next season,’ and I’m thinking, ‘Yeah, sure, ‘Don’t call us, we’ll call you.’'”

Happily, they did call Cunningham, and the rest is history. “By then, everybody in the UK wanted Game of Thrones on their résumé. It was a badge of honor, a mission everybody wanted to be on.”

I can also see Cunningham playing Jorah, who’s a lot like Davos in some ways: they’re trusted, reliable number twos whose hearts are basically in the right place…most of the time. I think he was a better fit for Davos, though.

And these aren’t the only two actors who auditioned for different roles than the ones they ended up playing. For example, Conleth Hill (Varys) originally auditioned to play King Robert Baratheon.

In the end, I think most of the roles went to the right people, which is impressive considering how huge this cast was.

Next. James Hibberd talks ‘Fire Cannot Kill a Dragon,’ season 8 criticism and more. dark

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h/t SyFy Wire