All Sorts of Weird Stuff: News

All Sorts of Weird Stuff offers news and information about George R.R. Martin, in particular about his A Song of Ice and Fire series.

"When I was young, I read all sorts of stuff. One week it would be Lovecraft, the next Vance. It was all imaginative literature, or as my dad called it 'Weird Stuff.' It was all 'Weird Stuff.'"

George R.R. Martin

New to the series? Read our spoiler-free review of A Game of Thrones.

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Sites of Interest

Game of Thrones

Belfast Signing

George R.R. Martin will be signing books at the Eason’s booksotre at 20 Donegall Place in Belfast. The signing starts at 1 PM on November 3rd. More information about the event, including a post-signing meetup, can be found at the A Song of Ice and Fire forum. The meetup will include GRRM and his partner Parris, and possibly some members of the cast and crew of HBO’s Game of Thrones production.

One additional detail is that there will be a book raffle at the post-signing moot, in support of the Children’s Literacy Charity Teachers & Writers Collaborative. Prizes are listed at the link above, and it’s probable more prizes will be added by the day of the event.

Official Site Update

George R. R. Martin’s official site has a new post on “Not a Blog”, concerning his forthcoming travels which begin with a trip to Fargo for a convention this weekend, followed by his flight out to the U.K. two days after he returns from the event. He is looking forward to seeing Marrakesh after the Irish leg of his production visit. He also notes that he’ll be away from football much of that time, and expects to be back home sometime around Thanksgiving.

Irish Signing Dates

GRRM provides tentative signing dates in Ireland, in the run up to his visit for some of the filming of the pilot episode of Game of Thrones. He writes that on November 3, he’ll sign at Eason’s Bookstore in Belfast at 1 PM, and that David Benioff, Dan Weiss, and possibly some of the cast may attend the signing. There’s also a second signing on the 5th, at 5 PM, at Eason’s on O’Connell Street in Dublin. These are, again, tentative dates and not yet set in stone.

Serial Updates from GRRM

George R. R. Martin shares a number of updates on several different topics at his “Not a Blog” journal, ranging from current progress on the book (his attempt to defeat the problem he’s termed “the Meereeneese Knot” hasn’t succeeded and it’s back to the drawing board) to comics (“Skin Trade” and “In The House of the Worm” to be published by Avatar Press, while Wild Cards: The Hard Call has its final issue still undrawn and with no set completion date) and anthologies (Songs of the Dying Earth has sold out, Warrior is due for a March publication, Star-Cross Lovers is progressing, and a new cross-genre anthology called Down These Strange Streets—mixing private eye mystery with fantasy and SF—has been contracted to Penguin/Ace.)

There is also a brief update on the progress of the pilot, with one more role cast, another role being offered to an actor, and a third role (and its selected actor) having to be written out of the pilot.

GRRM Confirms Casting

After rumors have swirled across the internet the last few days, George R.R. Martin has confirmed that Sean Bean has been cast as Eddard Stark, the Lord of Winterfell, for HBO’s pilot of Game of Thrones that will begin shooting in Belfast, Ireland in October. GRRM mentions that the casting has gone global, with casting sessions held in New York, London, Los Angeles, Dublin, and most recently Australia.

Other roles have been cast, including Mark Addy as King Robert, a young Irish actor named Jack Gleeson as Prince Joffrey (he is about 17 or 18 years old now, for those who might wonder), Harry Lloyd (late of the BBC’s Robin Hood) as Viserys, and finally a theatrical actor, Kit Harington, as Jon Snow.

BBC Reports on the Paint Hall

Thanks to Rimshot, a member of the forum who works as an extra in Belfast, we’ve learned of this report on on-going production work at the Paint Hall studio where Game of Thrones will be filmed. While the program is primarily concerned with a medieval comedy film set to start shooting there in three weeks, the video does mention a “large American TV production” that will start shooting immediately after Your Highness wraps. The pilot episode of Game of Thrones is set to start shooting in October.

TIME TV Critic on Game of Thrones

James Poniewozik, TV critic at Time magazine, praises A Game of Thrones after reading it for the first time and makes the case for why it could be a great TV series on HBO. He continues discussing the series in comments, though asks for spoiler warnings as he wants to continue reading the series without knowing what’s coming next.

Game of Thrones On-going Casting

According to reports from fans of the series, such as the one here, casting is currently being carried out for Daenerys Targaryen, Jon Snow, and Robb Stark. It seems that fresh faces are being sought for these particular roles which feature the younger characters, and the casting process may take a number of weeks before any actors are selected.

Weiss and Benioff on McCarthy and Dinklage

Over at the A Song of Ice and Fire forum, Dan Weiss and David Benioff surface to remark on the recent announcement concerning Peter Dinklage and Tom McCarthy joining the production. They note that McCarthy was their very first choice for director, and that Dinklage was always their first choice for Tyrion. They ask members of the forum to continue discussing casting suggestions, with a new caveat: given the production’s location in Northern Ireland, almost all roles are likely to be filled with actors from the U.K.

Peter Dinklage is Tyrion Lannister

The Hollywood Reporter has broken the news that Peter Dinklage has been cast as Tyrion Lannister for HBO’s Game of Thrones pilot going into production this autumn. A well-regarded actor, Dinklage may be most recognized for his part as Trumpkin in The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspain. Also announced, Thomas McCarthy has been selected as the director of the pilot. Although primarily an actor, the two previous films he has directed are the well-received indie film The Station Agent in which Dinklage had his first leading role, and the recent film The Visitor, for which he won the Independent Spirit Award for Best Director. He has also won awards at Sundance and other prestigious indepenent film festivals.

Northern Ireland Location Confirmed

A new article from the BBC, following a press release from the Northern Ireland government, reveals that A Game of Thrones will hold primary filming in several locations in the country. This will include a “massive set” in the Paint Hall studios, according to the press release. Filming is set to take place in October. The Belfast Telegraph reports sources claim that the pilot could be “worth” as much as £10 million.

After further examination, this figure probably refers to the economic impact of the production’s presence in the Northern Ireland economy, which estimates impact by taking the actual spending and multiplying it by a factor that represents all ancillary economic activity.

Game of Thrones Pilot to Film in October

According to an interview with David Benioff in the Swedish-language Metro newspaper, filming will commence in Ireland in October. A translation of the relevant quote: “I loved fantasy until I was 13, 14 years old and then I discovered girls. But George RR Martin’s story is more complex. It’s a more human story than just fighting against evil monsters. As a writer for TV (HBO) I also have a greater say. I’m involved in casting, choosing the director, and so on. We’ll start filming in Ireland in October.”

Pilot Script Review

The Winter Is Coming blog, started by a fan to cover the Game of Thrones pilot production for HBO, has apparently scored a copy of the script and has posted a synopsis (including information concerning the planned title sequence) and his thoughts on it. Interesting reading, to say the least.

More Pilot Episode Details

David Benioff and Dan Weiss dropped by the A Song of Ice and Fire forum to answer some questions and to offer some information concerning the location, ages of characters, and casting ... and a sneak peek, as well, at the first and last lines of the pilot script.

Probable Game of Thrones Shooting Location

In their test post to the A Song of Ice and Fire forum, Dan Weiss and David Benioff mention that the U.K. is presently the likeliest shooting place for the pilot. They also promise to pass on information to the board concerning casting sessions and production hiring once the production is more thoroughly under way for those aspiring actors, set designers, and so on among Ice and Fire fandom.