Westeros

The 'A Song of Ice and Fire' Domain

Digest

Collected entries from Westeros: News, Game of Thrones: News and Blood of Dragons: Announcements.

Ultra Rare GRRM Box Auction Announced

Although the ultra limited edition of the GRRM Box, with a run of just 200 priced at $600 each, sold out almost instantly (the limited and deluxe limited sets are still available), publisher Random House has announced that they are donating the rarest of them all—Ultra Limited Edition Box #001—in an auction to benefit the Wild Spirit Wolf Sanctuary.

Here’s the press release with the full details regarding the auction, which will be hosted on EBay and will begin tomorrow, December 2nd:

Random House donates George R. R. Martin Box ultra limited edition #001 to Wild Spirit Wolf Sanctuary

Box will be Auctioned Off by Wild Spirit to Raise Money for the Wolf Sanctuary

NEW YORK, NY ― December 1, 2016 — Today, Random House announced that it will donate GEORGE R. R. MARTIN BOX ULTRA LIMITED EDITION #001 to Wild Spirit Wolf Sanctuary of Ramah, New Mexico. Wild Spirit will auction the box to raise money for rescuing and providing sanctuary for captive-bred wolves and wolfdogs. The auction will begin on December 2nd, and the winner will be announced at a red carpet premiere of a film about Wild Spirit at George R. R. Martin’s Jean Cocteau Cinema in Santa Fe, New Mexico on December 13th. The auction will be held online at:
http://www.ebay.com/itm/George-R-R-Martin-Ultra-Limited-Edition-Box-/332051193363

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Wild Cards Official Site Launched

An official website for the Wild Cards superhero shared-world novels, whose origins lay way back in 1983 with a roleplaying game campaign that George R.R. Martin devised, has now been launched.

Of note are a number of initial blog posts from Martin and other members of the Wild Cards Consortium discussing various aspects of the shared world, from its inception and on down to recent days. It’s a good looking site, featuring a cover gallery, interviews, videos (including a 1988 recording of a Worldcon Wild Cards panel!), sample stories, and more.


The latest entry in the series is High Stakes, which was published this August.

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Mystery Knight Graphic Novel Due Next Year

UPDATE: Editor Anne Groell has gotten back to us to confirm that Ben Avery has adapted the script, and that the page count is 148 pages, not 240 pages as previously reported. We have corrected the report below.

“The Mystery Knight”, the third in the Dunk & Egg series of novellas set in the past of the Seven Kingdoms, is finally getting the comic book adaptation fans of the first two adaptions have beeing waiting for, according to Amazon. The adaption was first announced in 2013.

With a July 4 release date—matching the date on Random House’s own site—it looks like it’ll be released directly in collected format.

The Hedge Knight, the well-regarded first adaptation from Dabel Bros Productions, had art by veteran artist Mike S. Miller (who is listed as illustrating The Mystery Knight) and script by Ben Avrey (also returning). Eventually rights for the collected series shifted to Jet City Comics, Amazon’s own imprint, who followed up by then eventually publishing the The Sworn Sword collection which for a time was published by Marvel Comics.

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Arbor Gold, Dornish Red: Game of Thrones Wines Announced
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HBO’s just passed along word that they’ve entered into a collaboration with Vintage Wine Estates to create a selection of Game of Thrones wines including a Chardonnay, a Cabernet Sauvignon, and a red blend. (Funnily enough, this isn’t the first time there’s been wines produced with a A Song of Ice and Fire bent—the Brotherhood without Banners fans produced a very limited run of Arbor Gold” and a “Dornish Red” wines—with custom labels and all—for the 2006 Worldcon, L.A. Con IV!)

Officially Licensed Game of Thrones Chardonnay  Officially Licensed Game of Thrones Cabernet Sauvignon Officially Licensed Game of Thrones Red Wine

Here’s the press release below:

Santa Rosa, CA. (Nov. 22, 2016) In a toast to the critically acclaimed and Emmy® Award-winning HBO drama Game of Thrones, California wine company Vintage Wine Estates has announced an exclusive partnership with HBO Global Licensing to produce a selection of Game of Thrones wines, which include a Chardonnay, a proprietary red blend and a reserve-style Cabernet Sauvignon, designed with the show and its characters in mind and credited to Seven Kingdoms Wines.

“Any fan of Game of Thrones appreciates the role wine plays in the saga,” observed vintner Pat Roney, President and CEO, Vintage Wine Estates. “We are very excited to partner with HBO to give those fans some delicious wines to sip as they plot their own paths to the Iron Throne.”

The Lannisters are perhaps the family that most enjoys wine in Game of Thrones, as siblings Cersei and Tyrion sip it at various points of the show, but the award-winning series often sees wine play a role in scenes throughout the Seven Kingdoms, from Dorne to The Reach. Tyrion’s legendary wit and wisdom tend to be most in evidence when wine is close at hand. Arguably his most viral quote, “That’s what I do: I drink and I know things,” is stated as he sips from a goblet of wine and ponders the best course of action with Varys, Missandei and Grey Worm.

“Given the prominent role of wine on Game of Thrones and our previous success in the beverage category, an officially licensed wine for the show feels like a natural extension for our fans,” explained Jeff Peters, Director of Licensing and Retail for HBO. “Game of Thrones wines most definitely will add to the fan experience as the battle for the Iron Throne heats up heading into the final seasons.”

Game of Thrones wines will be available nationally in 750ml bottles in Spring 2017. Suggested retail price for Game of Thrones Chardonnay and Game of Thrones Red Blend is $19.99; Game of Thrones Cabernet Sauvignon is $39.99.

 

S6 Blu-ray and DVD Celebrated with Epic Fan Event
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In conjunction with the release of the sixth season on Blu-ray and DVD, HBO will be bringing the box set’s exclusive bonus features to life in three groundbreaking events with interactive experiences including photo, video and virtual reality that take fans behind the scenes and immerse them into the world of Game of Thrones.

Game Of Thrones Season 6 - Behind the Scenes will give visitors an exclusive look into the making of HBO’s most popular series via interactive audiovisual displays alongside exciting tech-based experiences. Fans will both learn what it takes to put the epic production together and get to step inside scenes themselves.  Set up as five different experiences themed to individual bonus features available on the Season 6 Blu-rayTM and DVD set, Game of Thrones: Season 6 – Behind the Scenes is designed to look like set pieces and production elements from the show. The event will give fans a chance to go behind the scenes and experience bonus content from Season 6 come to life while taking shareable photos and videos inside the burning Temple of the Dosh Khaleen, holding the door to save Bran, fighting in the Battle of the Bastards and sitting on the Iron Throne. Additionally, fans will have access to a brand new Virtual Reality experience created exclusively for this fan event that lets them train for battle in the wars to come in Westeros and beyond.

Following the November 15 release of Game of Thrones: The Complete Sixth Season on Blu-ray™ and DVD, the Game of Thrones: Season 6 – Behind the Scenes event will make its first stop at Astor Place in New York City on Friday, November 18 and Saturday, November 19, followed by stops at Grant Park in Chicago on Saturday, November 26 and Sunday, November 27, and at Hollywood & Highland in Los Angeles on Friday, December 9 and Saturday, December 10. The operating hours for all events and dates are 12:30pm-8pm.

When they are finished previewing never-before-seen content and interacting with the experiences, fans will be able to check out all of the exclusive bonus features that inspired these events in its entirety by purchasing Game of Thrones: The Complete Sixth Season on Blu-ray™ or DVD. The first 20 fans who buy Season 6 on Blu-ray or DVD before the event and bring their box set with them will be granted early access to the experience.

Interactive event experiences include:

  • Vaes Dothrak: Watch footage from the exclusive Blu-rayTM/DVD bonus feature “Recreating the Dothraki World,” a behind-the-scenes look at the creation of the city of Vaes Dothrak and its importance to Daenerys’s evolution, and stand in for Daenerys as the Temple of the Dosh Khaleen burns around you in a shareable video utilizing green screen technology.
  • North of the Wall: “Bran’s Journey” delves into Bran Stark’s shocking and revelatory journey during Season 6. In this interactive experience, fans will see a recreation of the mystical Weirwood tree, learn about the Children of the Forest, and “hold the door” to save Bran from the White Walker army in a shareable video.
  • Winterfell: “The Battle of the Bastards: An In-Depth Look,” available exclusively on the Season 6 Blu-ray/DVD set, goes behind the scenes to examine the production challenges of creating this epic event, including explorations of Visual Effects, stunts, and interviews with key cast and crew. In this experiences, modeled after Jon Snow’s command tent, fans can move stone pieces around the battle table and insert themselves into a photo opp of Jon’s position in the incredible aerial mob shot at the height of battle.
  • Castle Black: In the Defend the Wall Virtual Reality Experience, modeled after the Castle Black courtyard and created exclusively for the Game of Thrones: Season 6 – Behind the Scenes fan event, fans will wear a VR headset and pick up a virtual crossbow, arrows and shield to hone their battle skills for the wars to come. But beware! You never know what danger lurks around the corner.
  • The Workshop: The “18 Hours at the Paint Hall” Blu-rayTM/DVD feature follows all three Game of Thrones shooting units as they converge for the first time at Titanic Studios, better known as the Paint Hall, the series’ Belfast-based production hub. Housed in an aluminum structure modeled after the actual Paint Hall, this workshop will house props and costumes from the show, plus give fans the chance to sit on the Iron Throne and begin their reign as the true ruler of the Seven Kingdoms.

Fans can pre-register for the event now by visiting GoTBehindTheScenes.com for expedited entry. Fast Passes to the above experiences will be available through this site while supplies last.

Blu-ray Preview: The War of the Ninepenny Kings
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The Game of Thrones season 6 Blu-Ray and DVD set just came out today, and courtesy of HBO we’ve an exclusive clip from the Histories and Lore extras that have always been so popular. Each year’s production values seem to be going up and up, and from what we’ve seen so far it looks like it holds true this season. Last season’s Histories and Lore earned some attention from the Clio Awards, and we can only imagine this season will follow suit.

Here’s the exclusive, as Brother Ray (Ian McShane) narrates the War of the Ninepenny Kings:

 

A Game of Thrones Wallpapers

Random House has kindly taken some of illustrations fromthe A Game of Thrones: The Illustrated Edition (which is the central item in the limited edition GRRM Box) and has turned them into wallpapers. The artwork comes from Magali Villeneuve and Marc Simonetti, and while some are previously published some of the pieces are exclusive to the illustrated edition. Grab them while you can!

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Eurocon in Barcelona

Linda and I are off to Eurocon 2016 tomorrow, and looks like we’re leaving at just the right time: we got our very first snowfall in our area today, so the contrast with balmy Barcelona will be quite interesting. We’ve just one panel at the convention: The Influence of European Authors and History in the Work of George R.R. Martin. Joining us will be the esteem Alejo Cuervo, founder of Gigamesh, and our friend Javi Marcos of Los Siete Reinos. For those who couldn’t make it to the con, the good news is that Eurocon 2016 will be streamed in full in association with the Centre of Contemporary Culture of Barcelona

In fact, they’ve already got our panel set up, so keep an eye out at 6.30PM (Central European Time):

Besides that, on Saturday we’ll be joining a host of authors and artists (Ian Watson, Adam Roberts, the amazing Enrique Corominas, and more) at an epic signing session at the Gigamesh store (one of the very best SF/F speciality stories in Europe). Should be fun!

There’s a lot of other guests—including Richard Morgan (Altered Carbon, The Steel Remains, Black Man), Andrzej Sapkowski (The Witcher), Brandon Sanderson (Mistborn, The Way of Kings), Aliette de Bodard (The House of Shattered Wings), and more—and some very interesting panels on a wide range of topics (some in Spanish, some in English), so do check out the streaming schedule. And if you’re going to the con, do say hello!

ETA: And of course I forgot to mention that the winners of the Premio Ignotus—the awards of the Spanish national SF/F convention, similar to the Hugos—will be announced at the convention. The World of Ice and Fire is among the nominees in the translated work category, thanks to the fantastic efforts of Gigamesh and its translators (as well as Corominas for his amazing cover art).

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Game of Thrones Cluedo
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The classic game Cluedo (or Clue, to those across the Pond) has received a Game of Thrones remake thanks to HBO and Winning Moves, who sent us a review copy of their latest board game. They’ve already created versions of Risk and Monopoly, so with Cluedo they’ve basically achieved the trifecta of classic board games.

Game of Thrones Cluedo

Not only does Game of Thrones Cluedo feature a themed pair of maps (one for King’s Landing and Meereen), characters, and weapons (arakhs, Faceless Men, and more!) to give it that Game of Thrones flavor, but the game throws in some new wrinkles from the classic board game. Most significantly, each player’s character has a unique ability that can be used once per game which, if used right, can tip the scale in favor of a character. The Daenerys character, for example, can move twice on her turn, while Littlefinger can choose to randomly look at one of the cards held by another player after having already been shown one of their cards. The variations continue with the introduction of Intrigue cards, which provide special options such as moving to any location on the board, add six to a roll, or take a peek at a card one player had just shown to another player; some of these cards are to be played immediately or can be held and used until needed.

The most intriguing addition is the White Walker card. There are eight of them in the deck of cards that come with the game, and as game progresses they may be drawn one by one. Each card is set aside, to keep track of how many have been drawn, because the eighth card is special: whoever draws it is immediately out of the game. It adds a certain trepidation, to say the least, in the late game as the next turn of a card could mean the end of the player!

The game can be played by two players—there are a couple of tweaks needed to the standard rules to make it work—but it’s really best with more players, we think. The production quality of Game of Thrones Cluedo is great, although I do miss the classic plastic figurines from the American Clue for the players; here instead there are plastic holders for small cardboard images for each character, which certainly works and can be understood from a cost perspective, but still, it would have been neat to have sculpted figurines of Daenerys, Tyrion, Daario, Jorah, and the rest.

Game of Thrones Cluedo is available now in the U.K. You should also check Winning Moves’ Game of Thrones board game classics.

(For those in the U.S., USAopoly publishes the same variation as CLUE: Game of Thrones Board Game)

Game of Thrones Research Project

Following in the footsteps of the recent The World Hobbit Project and The World Star Wars Project, a group of 40 university researchers have just launched The Game of Thrones Research Project, aiming to capture the views and opinions of thousands of viewers and fans of the series through an online survey.

“Winter is coming”. Game of Thrones’ most famous saying. But what does it suggest and mean to you? We’re trying to gather the views of thousands of followers of the series, on this and a series of other questions, via a web survey at this address: www.questeros.org. Please, help us by visiting and completing it – and then passing it on. Who are we? We are a gathering of university researchers sharing an interest in the changing nature of ‘fantasy’. We’re entirely self-funded. We’re not affiliated with HBO in any way, or with George RR Martin. All our results and findings will be made publicly available – that’s a promise. If you’d like to know more about us, about the project, and why we are doing it, you can find more information on our website. Take the quiz now at www.questeros.org!

The website, with the very clever domain name of questeros.org, offers more in-depth information about what they seek to learn from the survey and how they intend to publish the results. Looking at the survey, it is (as the name would suggest) focused on the TV series, but it does include some questions that relate to—or can be related to—the novels and the TV series relationship with them. They estimate that it takes about 20 minutes to take the survey, depending on how detailed you make your responses (there’s several questions which allow for longer answers), and we encourage all of our readers to take a look at it and contribute your opinions.

 

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A Clash of Kings Enhanced Edition

The second enhanced edition of the A Song of Ice and Fire series—e-books exclusive to Apple iBooks, filled with glossaries, annotations, illustrations, and more—has now been released and can be purchased on iTunes. As we’ve said previously, these enhanced editions are really aimed at readers who find the mass of characters, locations, and incidents daunting, as the embedded information really helps with keeping track of what’s going on. However, the added art and some of the more obscure trivia in the annotations may well appeal to hard-core fans, so feel free to give it a look as well!

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Update: Game of Thrones Coming to Sweden? No.
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UPDATE: According to a follow-up report this week, as reported by Göteborg Posten, it looks like HBO has indicated that while it found Gotland very interesting it doesn’t have what they’re looking for and so Game of Thrones wll not be filming there. You can find our original report below:

A curious item out of Gotlands Tidningar caught our eye, as it indicated a production company on Gotland was currently involved in collecting location photos for what we can only assume is early location scouting for season 8 of Game of Thrones.

© En-cas-de-soleil / Wikimedia Commons / CC-BY-SA-3.0

According to Olivia Munck of The Line, a production and location services company in Gotland, over 300 images have been sent to the production in several batches as different environments and places were requested; these include images of the medieval town of Visby, followed by a second batch of Visby photos with a focus on older or more “aged” environments, and then a batch of photos focused on old farmsteads on Gotland (including Kattlunds and Stavgard).

Visby, which was the center of Hanseatic League for two centuries, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the best preserved medieval town in Scandinavia. Its medieval walls stretch for over 2 miles (3 kilometers), it’s packed with ruins of churches and cathedrals (such as St. Nicolai, where Linda and I held a few talks last year). It’s a beautiful, and quite unique, place, which has for over 30 years hosted the famous Medeltidsveckan medieval festival. The rest of Gotland is also dotted with historical sites and sites of archaeological value, and features some beatuiful vistas (as one can see on The Line’s site). And of course, being in Scandinavia, it’s also known to get a good deal of snow which one supposes might be considered useful for the final season of the series.

So, is the production actually going to end up filming in Sweden? Munck was also interviewed by Sveriges Radio after the initial article made the rounds in the press, and there reiterated that she felt the production certainly has some interest in filming there since she doesn’t suppose they would have asked for so many pictures over time if they were writing it off. At the same time, however, she cautioned that nothing was certain at this stage, that no contracts had been signed, and gave it no better than 50/50 odds after citing that Sweden does not have the kind of tax breaks for film productions that Iceland, Spain, Croatia, and other countries where Game of Thrones has filmed previously.

According to Munck, after all these photos the next step for the production (if they continued to be interested) would probably be sending someone over to take a look around in person.

GRRM Box Sweepstakes

The storming success of the GRRM Box limited edition collection—Random House reports that only 4 of the initial 200 Ultra Limited boxes remain—has led to the publisher and HBO offering fans in the United States (and the U.S. only, alas!) to enter a sweepstakes with the chance to win limited-edition and collectible Game of Thrones prize packs! Three winners will be selected on Tuesday, November 15th. All you have to do to enter—besides live in the U.S. and meet the other rules and requirements—is enter your email address.

What’s in the prize pack? Some amazing stuff, we have to say:

  • First prize: Hound’s Helm and Lannister Shield by Valyrian Steel (approximate retail value: $550)
  • Second prize: Daenerys and Drogon Statue Dark Horse Statue by Dark Horse (approximate retail value: $425)
  • Third prize: Arya Stark Statue by Dark Horse (approximate retail value: $225)
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20th Anniversary Edition Hits Shelves Tomorrow

Tomorrow is the official release date for A Game of Thrones: The Illustrated Edition, which is being released to mark the 20th anniversary of the publication of the first novel in the A Song of Ice and Fire series.

Of course, the book has hit shelves in some stores—check your local bookshops!—and there have already been some early reviews. One of these comes by way of our friends at A Podcast of Ice and Fire, and they’ve gone ahead and shared their thoughts on the book. For our part, Linda and I had an early chance to look at the book, and we have to say there’s some fantastic new art from Levi Pinfold, Magali Villeneuve, and Aranzta Sestayo. There’s also the welcome republication of some of Michael Komarck’s beautiful artwork based on the series that he’s done over the years. Definitely worth checking out, and we hope we’ll see more illustrated editions down the road!

For a recent preview featuring some of the artwork, make sure to take a look at Vanity Fair’s article from last month.

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Random House & HBO Announces the GRRM Box

To celebrate the 20th anniversary of the publication of A Game of Thrones, Random House and HBO has teamed up to create a box containing a special collectible version of the A Game of Thrones: The Illustrated Edition as well as a selection collectibles and exclusive items. The box will be available in three versions—Special, Limited and Ultra—though sadly only in the US and Canada. The full press release has been included below.

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10 Years of Blood of Dragons

Today we say Happy 10th Anniversary, Blood of Dragons MUSH! If Elio and I had not met on Elendor MUSH back in 1995 and if we had not decided that we wanted to start a MUSH of our own, Westeros.org would not exist. Of course, the site has grown far beyond our original intentions—which was simply to provide information to players of our game—but it all started with the weird and wonderful hobby of on-line roleplaying.

And if anyone wants to give it a try, we always welcome more converts to the world of text-based gaming. Or “collaborative story-telling” as we sometimes describe it as, because it is a lot more about shaping stories together than rolling dice and beating up monsters. If that makes you curious, try out our web-based guest client to visit Westeros in the time of Baelor the Blesed.

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A Game of Thrones Enhanced Digital Edition

Random House have just announced that the first in a series of digital, enhanced editions of George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire series has been released exclusively for Apple’s iBooks.

Featuring new cover art, numerous illustrations, enhanced maps, sigils, a glossary, and detailed annotations to provide a richer experienced for readers, and to help guide new readers through the dizzying number of characters and locations in the novels. As it happens, Linda and I have known all about this for awhile, since we’ve worked with Random House and Apple on the project—it’s been a really interesting, often very complicated, project!

There’s a lot more information, so here’s Random House’s press release. A tip, however, for those who simply can’t wait and read through it all: if you have iTunes installed, make sure to visit Apple’s launch site for an exclusive video interview with GRRM about the novels and the project, which features some really cool animation:

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Thrones at the Emmys
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This year’s Emmy Awards have concluded and the results featured a few surprises in the acting categories, but the overall picture was as expected for Game of Thrones as it secured a total of 12 Emmys, tying last year’s record. Besides repeating for Best Dramatic Series, the show received direction and writing awards for “The Battle of the Bastards”. The shut out in the acting categories goes against prevailing opinions among entertainment pundits and journalists, but it seems that while the voting constituency (rule changes in 2015 are a big part of why Game of Thrones is now dominant in the drama category) loves Peter Dinklage, his puzzled reaction to last year’s victory moved the voters away from him and instead saw them return to an old stand by (Maggie Smith) and a long-time veteran (Ben Mendelsohn) over the remaining Game of Thrones nominees.

Some notable remarks followed the Emmys when interviewers asked the showrunners about the future of the series and the possibility of sequels. According to the Hollywood Reporter:

“You might want to ask George about that. It’s a great world George created and a very rich world,” said Benoiff. “I’m sure there will be other series set in Westeros, but for us this is it.”

Martin quickly stepped up to the mic: “I do have thousands of pages of fake history of everything that led up to Game of Thrones, so there’s a wealth of material there and I’m still writing more. But at the moment I still have this show to finish and two books to finish, so that’s all speculation for now.”

Benioff’s remark reiterates that he and Weiss are done with showrunning for the forseeable future when Game of Thrones wraps up, which is no surprise, but it seems that discussions at HBO are at the point where he seems to have no doubt that some sort of follow-on project is likely. On the other hand, as GRRM says, it all remains speculation until HBO is ready to lock something in. We suspect it’ll be a year or two before we hear of any firm plans for a spin-off series drawing from The World of Ice and Fire or A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms.

Westeros.org Redesign & Restructuring

We are currently in the process of a long overdue website update. You have undoubtedly noticed that the layout has changed (and continues to fluctuate somewhat) and we are also reorganising the site somewhat. For our regulars, we wanted to provide a brief overview of what we’ve done so far and what we plan to do within the coming weeks.

We have more or less completed a transition to a more responsive design. There are still elements that do not work on mobile, such as the fixed navigation at the top of the screen and various images, but we’re working to try and sort these problems out. We have also removed the All Sorts of Weird Stuff section of the site; you will now find news at http://www.westeros.org/News/ instead.

Relating to the removal of All Sorts of Weird Stuff we are working on creating a new Gallery at http://www.westeros.org/Gallery/ which will merge the contents from All Sorts of Weird Stuff and the Citadel. We are also creating a new home for the book reviews at http://www.westeros.org/Books/. While we are setting up these new sections and moving data around, you may run into broken links and other problems, but hopefully this won’t take us too long.

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Illustrated Edition Preview

Vanity Fair has a brand new interview with series editor Anne Groell regarding the soon-to-be-released A Game of Thrones: The Illustrated Edition due to hit shelves next month. The interview also includes a gallery of ten images from the book—some which fans will have seen before, but also a number of new pieces by Magali Villenueve, Levi Pinfold, and Arantza Sestayo. The interview goes into some detail of how Groell and Martin have each worked with artists to develop the artwork Random House has commissioned over the years… and of course also touches on the as-yet-unknown release date of The Winds of Winter.

Check out the interview, and let us know what you think of the featured artwork!

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Game of Thrones Election Results
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HBO’s fun Game of Thrones promotion, pitting a number of characters as candidates in a fictional presidential election, concluded with over 1.6 million votes cast… 35% of which went to Jon Snow and his very popular running mate, Lyanna Mormont (there appear to be no minimum age requirements for the presidency of the Seven Kingdoms). To honor the occasion, an official campaign song from the band Valyrian Steel (fictional moniker of Kyle Gass, John Spiker, and John Konesky of Tenacious D), has been released on Soundcloud:

The GoT Party website has all the details of the results, as well as links to various videos made as part of the promotion.

Daario’s Ladies are Coming

Valyrian Steel, who have created a range of officially licensed replica swords and other items based on both the books and the TV show, have announced a new replica weapon—or two of them, rather—based on the A Song of Ice and Fire books. Daario’s Ladies are a recreation of the notorious arakh & stiletto set worn by the equally notorious Daario Naharis. Designed with input from George R.R. Martin—meaning that we now know what an arakh is supposed to look like—the swords come with a certificate of authenticity personally autographed by GRRM. The set will be produced as a limited edition of 5000 pieces where each item will be engraved with the edition number.

  • Blades: Stainless Steel
  • Lady Parts: 24k gold plating, matte finish, antique wash.
  • Hilt: Cast metal, antique brass plating
  • Plaque: Silkscreened fiber board. Includes mounting hardware.
  • Arakh Blade Length: 33 1/8 inches.
  • Stiletto Blade Length: 12 1/4 inches.
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Preorders for Daario’s Ladies open on the 27th of August and the estimated shipping date is late Winter or early Spring 2017. The price for the set will be $350.

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Game of Thrones Concert Tour
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The recently-announced Game of Thrones concert has expanded to a full-on tour across North America, and we have the full details—including all 28 locations (including 3 Canadian concerts)—in the press release below the cut. We can provide fans who are interested a special pre-sale code thanks to HBO and Live Nation, as well, for those who want to get their tickets sorted out as early as possible! If you’re interested, just follow this link, select the venue you’re interested in, go through the seating and ordering process, select the “HBO Fans and Family” option and use the code GOTTOUR when prompted for the promo code. This will get you access to the tickets now rather than waiting for the general sale date on Saturday!

See the full details on the concerts below, and don’t forget you can order the Season 6 soundtrack!

Wild Cards Series in Development

Over at “Not a Blog”, George R.R. Martin has some exciting news for fans of the Wild Cards series: Universal Cable Productions (the studio behind shows like Mr. Robot, The Magicians, Battlestar Galactica, and more) has acquired the rights to adapting the series to television. Development work begins immediately, with Melinda M. Snodgrass (an originator of the Wild Cards series, and GRRM’s right-hand so to speak) attached to executive produce alongside Gregory Noveck.

Interestingly, GRRM notes that due to his development deal with HBO, he will not be working on the series.Of course, he cautions that as with all things, development is never certain to produce a series. Finally, Martin notes that he’s pretty sure that no matter when the series takes place, if it goes forward Croyd Crenson (“The Sleeper”, a beloved character created by the late, great Roger Zelazny) will almost certainly make an appearance.

Finally, it seems that there’s some fluidity in what the potential series will draw on from the many, many novels spanning decades. Martin asks fans to share their thoughts of which characters they’d like to see on the screen in the comments section of his post.

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Happy Birthday, "A Game of Thrones"

20 years ago today, the first book in a new fantasy epic was released. Its rather striking-looking hardcover, with a silver-foil wrapper embossed with a throne, made a decent but hardly spectacular debut. Two decades later, it is a different story altogether.

When the anniversary edition of A Game of Thrones is released this autumn (October 18), it is likely to sell as well as everything else does these days that is connected to A Song of Ice and Fire and Game of Thrones.

GRRM has posted about the book’s long journey on his livejournal and in the post he also gives some information about the upcoming anniversary edition. To quote:

An anniversary like this requires something special, something more than just a reprint and a new novel. This new edition will be very special, I think. Same story, of course. But we’ve added an introduction by the World Famous Nebula Toastmaster John Hodgman… and a truly astonishing amount of artwork… a total of seventy-three (73) black and white interior illustrations, and eight (8) spectacular full color plates. Some of the artwork is drawn from the Ice & Fire calendars, from The World of Ice and Fire, and from the card and board games and RPGs… but forty-eight (48) of these pieces are completely new, never-before-seen artwork.

Make sure to check out the rest of GRRM’s post, not the least as he includes two of the art pieces, one of them a brand new image of Bran and Hodor.

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HBO Confirms Eighth Season as Last
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The TCA press tour is taking place, where network executives talk with reporters about their programming, and of course new HBO programming head Casey Bloys has fielded questions regarding Game of Thrones. As Variety’s live blog notes, there’s two major take aways.

First, Bloys confirmed that the 8th season of the show would be its last, although like other HBO executives he says he would be happy to get 10 more seasons. Many fans have assumed the 8th would be the last, given statements from Benioff and Weiss, but this is the first direct and explicit confirmation.

Second, Bloys remarked on the possibility of a “spin-off” so long as it “makes sense creatively.” What that means, exactly, is anyone’s guess, but certainly many HBO watchers and commentators have noted that it would be very logical for HBO to commission some sort of spin-off to hold on to at least some part of the show’s audience (averaging 25 million viewers per episode across all delivery methods) at a time when HBO’s upcoming programming has a lot of question marks floating around it.

Other, smaller details to note are that the late airing of season 7 (as we’ve previously reported) will mean that that season will not be in contention for the Emmys, and because of that late start it seems likely that The Leftovers will be scheduled to fill in that Spring-early Summer period.

T-Shirts from the HBO Store
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We’ve gone through the HBO Store’s current selection of Game of Thrones t-shirts and picked out a few of the newer releases for your perusal. After all, who doesn’t need a set of t-shirts for summer (even one that reads “Winter is Here”)?

We particularly like some of the new designs incorporating house sigils, such as this Stark, Targaryen and Lannister shirt, and of course everyone needs a Hodor shirt.

Comic Con Exclusives at the HBO Store
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Don’t fancy fighting through the hordes of fans at Comic Con to get a look at some of the exclusive Game of Thrones merchandise launched there? Don’t worry, the HBO store has limited quantities of the exclusive products on sale.

If you want to take home your very own giant, albeit in a more portable format, the Mag the MightyFunko Pop might be just the thing. Or, if you prefer a smaller trio, there’s an exclusive Funko Dorbz 3-Pack featuring a White Walker, Joffrey Baratheon and the Hound.

Should you like something more substantial there’s also the metallic silver Night King bust. Just keep it hidden in case you play the Game of Thrones: Clue with the exclusive Expansion Set and someone is a sore loser.

Blu-ray and DVD Details Released
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The Game of Thrones Season 6 Blu-ray and DVD set is due to hit shelves on November 15th (with digital HD available sooner on August 1st). HBO has finally revealed the contents of the the sets, and there’s quite a lot of interest—particularly a great deal of matter relating to the Tourney at Harrenhal. Quite interesting!

Here’s the full details below:

New York, N.Y., July 18, 2016 – Last year’s Emmy® Award winner for Outstanding Drama Series and currently nominated for 23 2016 Emmy® Awards including Outstanding Drama Series, Outstanding Writing, Outstanding Directing Outstanding Supporting Actress (Lena Headey, Emilia Clarke, Maisie Williams) and Outstanding Supporting Actor (Peter Dinklage, Kit Harrington), Game of Thrones is bigger than ever delivering “the power and pathos fans have come to expect” (Los Angeles Times).  The HBO drama has consistently been the top selling TV on DVD/BD for the past five years and now fans can get the most recent season earlier than ever when Game of Thrones: The Complete Sixth Season debuts from HBO Home Entertainment on Digital HD on August 1, 2016 and on Blu-ray™ with Digital HD and DVD November 15, 2016. The set features all 10 episodes, plus extensive bonus content:

 

Game of Thrones Filming This Summer
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HBO has sent out a press release concerning the 7th season of Game of Thrones, confirming several details—most notably the total number of episodes for the season, seven—that have come out over the last weeks. The press release is below:

The Emmy®- and Golden Globe-winning series GAME OF THRONES will begin shooting its next season later this summer, it was announced today by Casey Bloys, president, HBO programming. Production of the seven-episode seventh season will be based in Northern Ireland, while additional portions will be filmed in Spain and Iceland, with debut slated for summer 2017 on HBO.

        “Now that winter has arrived on GAME OF THRONES, executive producers David Benioff and D.B. Weiss felt that the storylines of the next season would be better served by starting production a little later than usual, when the weather is changing,” said Bloys. “Instead of the show’s traditional spring debut, we’re moving the debut to summer to accommodate the shooting schedule.”

        Season seven directors will include Mark Mylod, Jeremy Podeswa, Matt Shakman and Alan Taylor.

        Locations for shooting in Spain will include Sevilla, Caceres, Almodovar del Rio, Santiponce, Zumaia and Bermeo.

        Last week, GAME OF THRONES received 23 Primetime Emmy® nominations, the most of any nominee for the third year in a row. This year’s nominations include Outstanding Drama Series, 2 for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series (Peter Dinklage, Kit Harington), 3 for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series (Emilia Clarke, Lena Headey, Maisie Williams), Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series (Max von Sydow), 2 for Outstanding Directing for a Drama Series (Miguel Sapochnik, Jack Bender) and Outstanding Writing for a Drama Series (David Benioff and D.B. Weiss).

        Season seven credits: The executive producers of GAME OF THRONES are David Benioff, D.B. Weiss, Carolyn Strauss, Frank Doelger and Bernadette Caulfield; co-executive producers, Guymon Casady, Vince Gerardis, George R.R. Martin and Bryan Cogman; producers, Chris Newman, Greg Spence and Lisa McAtackney.