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.
George R.R. Martin has returned home from C2E2 and has a post up about the experience. Some interesting pieces of news for fans of his work. Besides the release of Fevre Dream #1 by Avatar Press, he notes that Avatar is still hard at work on adapting his story, In the House of the Worm, script by Wild Cards-collaborator John Jos. Miller and art by Ivan Rodriguez, and they’re still trying to nail down an artist for the comic book adaption of his Bram Stoker Award-winning novella, “The Skin Trade”; Daniel Abraham has already written the adaption.
The above items were all previously known, more or less, however. For something completely new, GRRM announces that IDW has acquired the rights to producing a miniseries based on his science fiction television pilot from the early 90’s, Doorways. If it does well, there’s the potential for it to go forward for a longer period of time, as six back-up scripts were readied, including one written by GRRM himself. And if it takes off? Original stories are a definite possibility. As Martin notes, very few people have seen the pilot, which ended up released on video in Europe at one point but which was never aired in the U.S., so this is a fine chance to see what his show—which some believe inspired Fox’s Sliders from the same period—could have been like.
In other news, some half a dozen publishers met with Martin over the weekend to discuss the possibility of adapting “A Song of Ice and Fire” to comics. He’s uncertain of approving this still, but some formal proposals may follow on from these meetings and he’ll consider it. He cautions, though, that these comics would then be based on the novels, and not be an adaption of the HBO series or its scripts, due to separation of rights.
Finally, GRRM notes that he had a good lunch with Maureen Ryan, TV writer for the Chicago Tribune (and unabashed Ice and Fire fan), the setting for an interview which Ryan has teased with a remark from GRRM regarding the difficulties the production team will face in turning his expansive vision—a reaction to his days in Hollywood, when budget and time constraints kept scaling down what he wanted to do—into televised drama with budget and time constraints. The interview should be published later this week or early next.
We’ll shortly have a full report on his Q&A session in the So Spake Martin collection.
GRRM’s official site has been updated with a new update on “Not a Blog”. There he mentions he’s feeling mostly recovered from his recent illness, although his assistant Ty is now feeling under the weather, and then discusses various irons in the fire. Not only does work on A Dance with Dragons continues, but he’s wrapping up editing of Fort Freak (the 21st Wild Cards book) and will soon be gearing up to write his one script for HBO’s Game of Thrones. He also mentions some other news items—both good and, unfortunately, bad—that he may be able to share soon.
Random House (the parent of Bantam) has a trade publication (note: large PDF file) on-line, looking forward to their plans for this year. Down at page page 107 is an entry for the 2011 A Song of Ice and Fire calendar, illustrated by John Picacio. It’s given a $16 price point ($19 in Canada), which is the first time we’ve had a recommended retailer price.
It’s projected that this will only be the first such calendar via Bantam, as they cite the popularity of the Tolkien calendars. Notably, they matter-of-factly state that if the HBO production goes forward, this will have a positive impact on the sales of the series as well as on related merchandise.Finally, they have adjusted their sales figures upwards for the series. Previously, the books were said to have had 2.2 million copies in print, and now it’s pegged at over 3.5 million.
Many thanks to Adam Whitehead of The Wertzone for pointing this document (which has other interesting things to say about out.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.”
The Westeros network consists of several different sites, including a forum and a wiki, for all your A Song of Ice and Fire needs.