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Collected entries from Westeros: Updates, All Sorts of Weird Stuff: News and Blood of Dragons: Announcements.

Telltale Aims for Late 2014 for Game of Thrones

It’s been going around the gaming press that a community manager at Telltale Games has revealed that they intend to have the officially-licensed Game of Thrones adventure game titled Iron from Ice out by the end of the year. A little less than a year ago, Telltale’s acquisition of the license from HBO became big news among gamers, as Telltale’s recent adventure games—their Walking Dead game in particular—have been popularly and critically acclaimed for their storytelling and characters.

Last month, Telltale released a very short teaser hinting at a North-based storyline, mentioning some of the minor houses in the wolfswood:

92Y Livestream of GRRM This Sunday

The 92Y, which will be hosting George R.R. Martin in a public discussion on October 26 at 8PM EST, is offering a livestream of the event over at its Tumblr page. Journalist Laura Miller, who has previously profiled George, will be joining him on stage and interviewing him as he discusses his work on A Song of Ice and Fire, the forthcoming The World of Ice and Fire that hits shelves on Tuesday (Pre-order: Amazon US, Amazon UK).

Speaking of the 28th, George will also be appearing on the Seth Myers show that day (or at least, he’ll be filming his appearance, we’re not sure if it means it’ll air that same day or not).

World of Ice and Fire Excerpt in App

The A World of Ice and Fire app (as it’s called on iTunes; it’s called the A Game of Thrones Guide on Android, although we’re uncertain if the update has reached that platform yet) has been updated with an excerpt from the forthcoming The World of Ice and Fire (Pre-order: Amazon US Amazon UK). The excerpt is drawn from the section of the book devoted to the ancient history of the Vale up to the point in which the conflict between the Andals and the First Men culminated in the Battle of Seven Stars, where the last First Man king fell and the Arryns came to rule the Kingdom of Mountain and Vale.

The app is free to download, and with the latest update includes all the offiically released excerpts from The Winds of Winter, as well as the World of Ice and Fire excerpt.

New Casting Revealed

Here’s a pleasant surprise: the Hollywood Reporter reveals that Adewal Akinnuoye-Agbaje (known to fans of television from his roles as Adebisi on Oz and Mr. Eko on Lost) has joined the cast of Game of Thrones. The role? It’s described as such:

‘...  a character not in the books with the name “Malko.”’

We’re guessing he has something to do with Meereen. Akinnuoye-Agbaje’s roles as Adebisi and Eko were very memorable, and hopefully this role will give him some room to leave a mark with his presence.

GRRM on The World of Ice and Fire

Day by day, the release of The World of Ice and Fire (Pre-order: Amazon US Amazon UK) draws nearer. It’s currently hit #14 on Amazon’s Top 100 Books, which is just sort of mind-boggling for us.

To help promote the release of the novel in the UK, Harper Voyager sat down with George back in August for a brief promotional video discussing his thoughts on the importance of setting in a fantasy, the interest fans have in learning about the world, and our collaboration with him on the book:

The book hits shelves in the US and UK (and, I’m told, Italy and Germany; possibly some other countries as well) on October 28th.

Facts of Ice and Fire

Ahead of the publication of The World of Ice and Fire (Pre-order: Amazon US Amazon UK) in the US, UK, and (apparently) Italy on October 28th, our UK publisher HarperCollins Voyager has gone to its twitter feed to share #FactsOfIceAndFire. These are small details culled from the world book—some of them familiar to readers of the novels, and some of them brand new. Here’s a small sampling:

  • “Maegor the Cruel killed his wife Tyanna, cut out her heart w/ Blackfyre and threw it to the dogs!”
  • “Queen Rhaenyra possessed 15 dragons, including one named The Cannibal”
  • “Ellyn Reyne tried to seduce Tytos Lannister but was so intimidated, he couldn’t perform & fled”>

For more in the coming days, follow @HarperVoyagerUK on Twitter!

One Month to the World of Ice and Fire

Just 29 days to go before the publication of The World of Ice and Fire (Pre-order: Amazon US, Amazon UK), and we admit, we’re getting excited as well by the flurry of activity that’ll follow on the forum and elsewhere concerning all the new setting information (and a few little details relevant to various mysteries in A Song of Ice and Fire).

Contrary to what Amazon UK says at the moment, by the by, it will be out on October 28th in the UK—HarperCollins Voyager is sorting that error out with Amazon. We can say that a number of publishers around the world will be bringing out translated editions, including our native Sweden, as well as Brazil, Spain, France, Germany, Italy, Hungary, Russia, and more—but those will be released at various points in time as they complete their translations and print their editions. In total, a dozen countries will be publishing it so far, with negotiations ongoing in a number of others.









Not really sure what The World of Ice and Fire is? Earlier this year, Linda and I did a video about it that can help with that:

Westeros.org at Royal Armory Exhibition

Back in March, Linda and I were invited to the grand opening of the Power Games (Maktspel) exhibit in Stockholm’s Royal Armory, featuring a replica of the Iron Throne as well as numerous costumes from Game of Thrones alongside with historical costumes from Sweden’s royal history as well as costumes from the award-winning Elizabeth and Elizabeth: The Golden Age. It was a fine occasion, and the quality of the exhibit itself was exceptional.

Now, we’ve been invited back on October 4th for a special event built around the exhibit. Beginning at 11AM, with a chance to have a photo taken by a professional photographer as attendees sit on the Iron Throne, the event will include guided tours of the exhibit, as well as a couple of seminars which begin at 3:00PM. One will focus on on the burgeoning popularity of fantasy, featuring the founder of Sweden’s excellent SF Bokhandlen SF/F bookstore… and the other will be all about The World of Ice and Fire (Pre-order:US, UK), Westeros.org, and history in A Song of Ice and Fire and Game of Thrones, featuring Linda andme as well as genre experts from SF Bokhandlen.

Tickets for the seminars can be booked by mailing .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or calling 08-402 30 30 (Monday-Friday between 9-12). The seminar ticket cost is 100 kr, including entry to the museum, and our panel, at least, will be in English.

Hope to see some fellow A Song of Ice and Fire fans there!

Inside Game of Thrones Preview: Giants and Mammoths

Courtesy of HBO, we have an exclusive excerpt from Inside HBO’s Game of Thrones: Seasons 3 and 4, written by Cat Taylor, assistant and official “keeper of scrolls” for Game of Thrones, as well as the lead writer on HBO’s Making Game of Thrones production blog. The first book in the series, covering the first two seasons, was written by writer and co-producer Bryan Cogman, and was a fantastic look behind the scenes, filled with photographs, interviews, VFX renderings, and concept art that showed the massive scale and complexity of the production, as well as the amount of talent involved in making it the visual splendor that it is.

This excerpt suggests that the second volume in the series will do the same, as it gives us an inside look at the appearance of the giants and the mammoths in “The Watchers on the Wall”:

To GRRM, on His 66th Nameday

Fans of A Song of Ice and Fire and Game of Thrones—or of Wild Cards, Fevre Dream, The Armageddon Rag, Tuf Voyaging, The Dying of the Light, Beauty and the Beast, or dozens of short stories, novellettes, and novellas—should feel free to lift a glass to celebrate George R.R. Martin’s 66th birthday.  May there be many more birthdays to come!

(Also on this day in history: the aftermath of the Battle of Poitiers during the Hundred Years War, which has a bit of influence on the A Song of Ice and Fire series. Curious coincidence!)

German News Covers Westeros

Deutsche Welle—a German broadcaster that was among the first to have a web presence way back in 1994—celebrates the 20th anniversary of that presence by doing something… rather unique. See their press release below to learn just what they’re up to:

Deutsche Welle reporting live from Westeros

Deutsche Welle (DW) Director General Peter Limbourg sees the need for reliable information on the current conflicts in “Game of Thrones”. Users worldwide have also been called out to help DW develop “Valyrian” and “Dothraki” as official DW languages.

In celebration of the 20th anniversary of DW’s first website, Germany’s international broadcaster has expanded its online reporting to include the continents Westeros and Essos. The focus should specifically deal with the current conflicts that have been made public on the series “Game of Thrones”. Limbourg sees DW’s role as being a reliable source of information: “The international bestseller from George R.R. Martin presents a multifaceted albeit notoriously subjective view of the events. The TV series from HBO is a global phenomena – but the standard of reporting leaves a lot to be desired.”

DW has been a trusted source of news and information for more than 60 years. It has become a tradition at DW to use extraordinary anniversaries to provide a tongue-in-cheek look at what “worldwide” actually means. To celebrate 10 years online in 2004, DW expanded its range of online content to include the Klingon language.

Starting today, the new online special answers the most pressing questions from “Game of Thrones” at www.dw.de/game-of-thrones. Like what qualifies the Night’s Watch to be the arctic special forces? And what secrets are lost in a raven-based communications system?

In order to provide information among new target audiences requires certain linguistic skills. In the world of “Game of Thrones”, the most used languages are “Valyrian” and “Dothraki”. But these have just recently been made public here. New words are discovered and deciphered each day, with new rules and dialects that are discussed by fans.

“It’s that type of diversity that we want to highlight here,” says Limbourg. “That’s why you won’t find any complete articles in Valyrian and Dothraki, but rather interactive translation pages. Piece for piece, we will be completing a new version of the website and everyone can take part.”

DW has been online since 1994. It was the first German public broadcaster to go online and even outpaced international competitors like the BBC by three years. Today, dw.de is available in 30 languages – not including Valyrian and Dothraki – and has 33 million unique visitors per month.

Win a Stark from Dark Horse

Thanks to our friends over at Dark Horse—purveyors of fine comics and excellent collectibles—we’re happy to present a chance for two fans to win one of two Dark Horse Deluxe Game of Thrones figures. This contest is open world-wide—if a postal service can reach you, you can enter (yes, even if you’re in Antarctica!)

The latest entries in the deluxe figure series from Dark Horse, the Robb Stark and Arya Stark figures are to-scale renditions of the two characters. Though not posable, they’re larger in size than your typical action figures, and feature quite a lot of detail.

To enter, just post in our comments thread below—sorry, Facebook required—by naming which of the two Stark siblings is your favorite, and why. We’ll select two winners somewhere around the middle of next week, before I head off to Titancon.

 

Westeros.org at Titancon

For those who follow us here at Westeros.org—whether it’s at our own site, or on Sky’s Thronecast—you may be interested to know that Elio (that would be me) will be a guest at this year’s Titancon in Belfast, which takes place next week at the Wellington Park Hotel. Other guests of the convention include Game of Thrones actors Kerry Ingram, Aimee Richardson, and Eugene Simon.

There’ll be panel discussions, book readings, and more. In my case, I’ll be reading short excerpts from the upcoming The World of Ice and Fire (Pre-order: Amazon US, Amazon UK), taking part in a couple of Game of Thrones panel, and will discuss the making of The World of Ice and Fire on stage with Irish writer Peadar Ó Guilín.

Should be fun!

Game of Thrones Enters the Record Book

... the Guinness Book of World Records, that is. The 2015 edition of the perennial guide to records great, small, and even exceedingly trivial will be hitting retailer bookshelves next week, and among the new records recorded is “Most Pirated TV Program”.

Citing TorrentFreak’s report, the book states that the 5.9 million illicit downloads of the the third season’s finale, “Mhysa”, make it the most pirated TV program in the world. It will also note that executives at HBO have in the past said that the wide-spread piracy is “better than an Emmy.”

Actor Supports 550 Challenge

We’ve spoken previously of the ALS ice bucket challenge finding a number of Game of Thrones actors and crew members (since that post, Emilia Clarke has joined in the fun), but it’s not the only effort out there to raise awareness for a serious issue. Actor Joe Dempsie, who has played Gendry on Game of Thrones, has stepped up with a video in support of the 550 challenge. In brief, Scope is a UK-based organization that attempts to raise awareness on issues related to disability in Britain.

Here’s Dempsie and a group of fellow supporters of Scope, performing their challenge and discussing what it’s all about:

 

Tycho Nestoris Returns

Once again, James Hibberd has the scoop, revealing that Mark Gatiss—writer and actor on Sherlock, among many other pop favorite shows—will be returning on season 5 to reprise his role as Tycho Nestoris of the Iron Bank of Braavos. Last seen negotiating with Stannis Baratheon over the Bank’s financial support, his appearance in season 5 certainly heralds more use of Braavos and the Iron Bank for this season.

Hibberd also adds that Gatiss will be filming in Croatia next week.

Game of Thrones at the Awards

Although HBO’s Game of Thrones was blanked at the Primetime Emmys, the number of nominations the show received was among the most any regular drama series received this year…. and when you factor the Creative Arts Emmys (of which the show won four), it was the most nominated drama of the year with a total of 19. The show’s cast and crew were out in force in support, and thanks to so many people being around Los Angeles it certainly helped get some involvement in the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge as GRRM, Sibel Kekilli, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Lena Headey, and Kit Harington all took the challenge for the cause. Others who have participated from the cast: Pedro Pascal, Maisie Williams, Sophie Turner, and Joe Dempsie.

Besides the Emmys, we were present at Loncon where “The Rains of Castamere received the Best Dramatic Presentation (Short Form) Hugo Award. David Benioff and Dan Weiss were both in the crowd, and seemed very pleased to be at their first ever Worldcon for such an occasion. Both of them have spoken in the past of their mutual love of genre literature when they were younger, when they read the likes of Fritz Leiber, Le Guin, and Tolkien, and speaking with them afterward they certainly seemed over the moon at winning the most well-known genre award around.

This is the third consecutive win for Game of Thrones at the Hugos, and this one in particular was noteworthy for winning despite being in the UK, with an outsized UK-based membership who rallied around Doctor Who. “The Rains of Castamere” had a substantial lead in first selections, but as episodes were eliminated “The Day of the Doctor” began to gather more and more steam until coming within passing distance… only for Orphan Black being dropped from the list, and votes for it redistributed, giving the episode a surge that led to its victory.

 

Win Tickets to an Evening with GRRM and Robin Hobb

We have two pairs of tickets to see George R.R. Martin and Robin Hobb on Tuesday 19th August at the Freemasons Hall in London! This event is a once in a lifetime chance to see to two of the world’s greatest storytellers discuss how they build their fictional universes, create their characters and balance fantasy and reality,  their influences and inspirations, their struggles and successes. A must-attend for all fantasy fans. To enter the competition, just answer two simple questions:

* The Stark children aren’t the only people in the fantasy genre who have a close association with a wolf. In fact, Robin Hobb has a particularly notable example of this in her Farseer trilogy. What’s the name of Fitz’s wolf in that series?

* Which of the Stark direwolves is your favorite, and why?

You can leave your answer in comments below. The contest closes Thursday evening, so be quick ... and be ready to keep an eye on your Facebook messages in case you’re a winner as we’ll need your contact information!

If you would like to hear more about HarperVoyager’s authors including George and Robin, why not subscribe to their newsletter http://harpervoyagerbooks.co.uk/subscribe/ “>here.

And tickets for the event, which includes a signed copy of Fool’s Assassin by Robin Hobb, are available

J.J. Murphy Passes Away (Updated)

According to the Belfast Telegraph, veteran Northern Irish actor J.J. Murphy passed away mere days after filming his first scene for season 5 of Game of Thrones. Heretofore an unpublicized member of the cast, the Telegraph reports that Murphy was cast in the role of Ser Denys Mallister, a senior man of the Night’s Watch who in the novels was the commander of the Shadow Tower and a leading candidate to succeed Lord Commander Mormont. The Telegraph notes he was due to film more scenes, and speculates as to whether the role will be removed from the show or if another actor will be cast to fill it.

Murphy, 86 years old at the time of his death, had decades of theatre experience. According to the Telegraph, he was best known for his work at the Lyric Theatre in Belfast, where actors such as Liam Neeson and Ciaran Hinds cut their teeth and learned their craft alongside him. Our condolences to his friends and family.

UPDATE: HBO’s publicity twitter has released the following statement from David Benioff and Dan Weiss:

We will not be recasting J.J. Murphy. He was a lovely man, and the best Denys Mallister we could have hoped for. And now his watch is ended.
A Ring of Ice and Fire Replaced by Links Database

One of the original parts of Westeros was A Ring of Ice and Fire, a webring that sought to bring together all A Song of Ice and Fire fansites when the fandom still was in its infancy. Over time, webrings grew rather obsolete and outdated as a way of connecting similar sites and eventually the third-party solutions disappeared. We did attempt to make our own within the software we use to run Westeros, but it was poorly suited to it, and as a result the webring has been defunct in all but name for several years. We have now finally pulled the plug on it and removed that section from the site.

However, we are still very much interested in seeing the A Song of Ice and Fire fandom thrive and given the amount of traffic that we do get at Westeros, we thought that we might at least replace the webring with a simpler, more straight-forward solution in the shape of a Links database. Now, if you click through to that page, you will notice that it is as of yet very much in its infancy. However, the submission page is up and running and we hope that we will start getting a few submissions so that we can shape the rest of the page around the content once it starts appearing.

LFCC Diary: Interviews from London

Thanks to the intrepid Marino Santirso, Westeros.org is happy to present his diary from the London Film and Comic Convention. Over the coming days, we’ll be posting interviews with a number of Game of Thrones actors that were present at the convention, and as always they’re quite the charming bunch. Marino has provided an introduction to the diary—and himself—here... and as it happens, we’ve also posted the very first interview as well with actor Finn Jones, who plays the famous Knight of Flowers, Ser Loras Tyrell. Finn was actually one of the first actors we ourselves interviewed way back during the first season, and we’re pleased to say he’s as exuberant as always!

You can read Finn’s interview here. As the week progresses, we’ll add further interviews with the likes of Gethin Anthony (Renly Baratheon), Kate Dickie (Lysa Arryn), Daniel Portman (Podrick Payne), and Kristian Nairn (HODOR) !

Pre-order Season 4 of Game of Thrones

HBO’s just sent out a release noting that today, the season 4 boxed set of Game of Thrones can now be pre-ordered (US Bluray, US DVD, UK Bluray, UK DVD). Here’s the full release concerning the contents, and the differences between the DVD and Bluray editions:

The global cultural phenomenon Game of Thrones returns for its fourth season on Blu-ray and DVD from HBO Home Entertainment on 16th February 2015 and is loaded with exclusive bonus content, including extensive guides and illustrated histories.

This hit HBO series has broken ratings records and topped The Sopranos℠ to become the most popular show in the network’s history. Season four continues this winning streak with 19 Emmy® Awards nominations including Outstanding Drama Series, Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series (Peter Dinklage) and Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series (Lena Headey).

Each year, Game of Thrones continues to be one of the best-selling TV programmes available on Blu-ray and DVD, and Game of Thrones: The Complete Fourth Season is packed with even more exclusive bonus content including roundtable discussions, on-set interviews, audio commentaries, and brand new animated histories giving fans hours of extensive, never-before-seen material.

In Season 4, while the Lannisters’ hold on the Iron Throne remains intact, new and ongoing threats from the south, north and east threaten to tip the scales. As Stannis Baratheon and Daenerys Targaryen continue to grow their respective armies, the arrival of the Lannister-loathing “Red Viper of Dorne” poses a more immediate danger. In the north, the depleted Night’s Watch seems overmatched against the advances of Mance Rayder’s army of wildlings, which in turn is being trailed by an even more formidable foe: the undead White Walkers.

Evening with GRRM and Robin Hobb Tickets Available

Fans who can make it to London on August 19th, take notice: tickets for the Harper Collins Voyager and blinkbox-sponsored evening with George R.R. Martin and Robin Hobb now on sale. It’s a world exclusive event, on the eve of the publication of Hobb’s continuation of her landmark Farseer series with Fool’s Assassin, and the two authors will likely discuss their respective works, the fantasy genre in general, and much more. It’s definitely an exclusive opportunity for genre fans!

GRRM on the Winds of Winter Prologue

In the course of yesterday’s Game of Thrones panel, George dropped a bomb shell for fans eager to hear about the next entry in the A Song of Ice and Fire series, revealing a character who’ll be making an appearance in the prologue. Terri Schwartz of Zap2it managed to get a hold of him right after the panel, and tried to get a bit more information out of him. Those questions, and more—including another confirmation from GRRM that he will not be writing a season 5 script—can be seen here.

Some thoughts on it after the cut.

GRRM Not Writing for Season 5

Well, this is an interesting revelation at EW’s interview with yesterday’s panelists. When asked if he’s writing for season 5, George admits that he is not, in fact, doing so. This will be the first time that the show has not had a GRRM-penned episode. Martin cites his work on The Winds of Winter as the primary reason. You can find the full interview below (the question, and Martin’s response, starts at the 1:10 mark):

Casting News from San Diego

The panel’s over, and the big news out of it is that HBO revealed a number of the new cast members via a casting video, seen below (keep reading for HBO’s press release, and a bonus season 4 blooper reel!):

Dark Horse Reveals New Game of Thrones Figure

San Diego Comic Con is in full swing, and today will see the now-traditional Game of Thrones panel featuring a bevy of cast and crew, including GRRM himself, all hosted by Craig Ferguson (if only Geoff Peterson could co-host…!) But there’s a lot more going on at the convention that’s Game of Thrones related as the biggest comic and media convention in the U.S. gets rolling. A number of licensed creators, including Funko, Insight, and more are also present… and so, too, is Dark Horse.

Among the SDCC exclusive premieres taking place from Dark Horse—including a Lannister shield plaque and Bolton map marker (more abou those later), they’re unveiling a new deluxe figure, this time depicting (the late) Tywin Lannister looking as stern and aristocratic as ever. Here’s what Dark Horse has to say about the release:

Tywin Lannister has ruthlessly schemed his way into power in the HBO adaptation of Game of Thrones, and he has not stopped there. Using a behind-the-scenes campaign of intimidation and guile, he has also secured a place in the upcoming group of detailed collectable Game of Thrones figures produced by Dark Horse Comics.

“We just couldn’t say ‘no’ to Tywin,” Dark Horse product development head David Scroggy remarked, “It didn’t seem like a smart idea to deny him.”

Exclusively revealed on social media by HBO on Preview Night of San Diego Comic-Con, the figure prototype is featured at the Dark Horse booth’s upcoming products display.

The Tywin Lannister figure joins on ongoing series of non-articulated deluxe figures of characters from the popular series. Debuting in January 2014, the ongoing range will continue through 2015.

The Tywin Lannister figure measures approximately 8” tall on his base. It will be packaged in a full-color window-box package.

Scheduled on-sale date is March 11, 2015, which will make the figure available in-store just ahead of the new season premiere of Game of Thrones.

A litlte bird tells us that Tywin is just the first in a new series of deluxe figures from Dark Horse, but more on that in weeks to come.

If you’re at SDCC, make sure to drop by Dark Horse’s booth, #2615, and get a closer look at the Tywin figure and everything else they have on display!

 

GRRM Special Appearance in London

Right after Loncon 3—this year’s World Science Fiction Convention—wraps up, George R.R. Martin and fellow fantasist Robin Hobb will be making a special appearance in central London on August 19th. The news, from Martin’s UK publisher Harper Collins Voyager, notes that seating will be limited so tickets are running at £45… but in partnership with sponsor Blinkbox, the event will be streamed on Blinkbox’s Facebook page for all of those who couldn’t get tickets (or live on the wrong continent to consider getting them!)

On a related note, Voyager has recently revealed the UK cover for the forthcoming The World of Ice and Fire, which Linda and I have co-written with George. It’s a variation on the American cover, with a black background and some distinctive flames as well other things like font choices to bring it in line with the U.K’s editions of the A Song of Ice and Fire series.

Season 5 Directors Revealed

Now that filming is soon to commence later this month, EW—as always!—gets the scoop on just who’s directing each episode of season 5. Some interesting new names in this one, and some interesting details:

Episodes 501 and 502: Michael Slovis
Episodes 503 and 504: Mark Mylod
Episodes 505 and 506: Jeremy Podeswa
Episodes 507 and 508: Miguel Sapochnik
Episodes 509 and 510: David Nutter

As James Hibberd points out, David Benioff and Dan Weiss aren’t taking up director duties as they have with the last few seasons, and other than Nutter every one of the directors is brand new to the series…

Well, sort of. Jeremy Podeswa was set to direct  at least one episode of season 2—almost certainly “Blackwater”—when a family situation forced him to drop out. His taking the middle set of episodes may be indicative that there’s some sort of big turn—potentially something action-heavy—taking place in those episodes, given not only the fact that he had been pegged to direct the action-heavy “Blackwater” but has also directed episodes of HBO’s The Pacific, including (with David Nutter) the episode “Iwo Jima” about the Battle of Iwo Jima.

Also of note is the way that every director is directing two episode, contiguous blocks. That may provide some advantages for the scheduling of filming.

Game of Thrones Leads Emmy Field

The Primetime Emmys have announced their nominations for this year’s award, and the ever.popular Game of Thrones leads the field with a total of 20 nominations in 19 categories, including a number in the “major” categories: Best Drama, Supporting Actor (Peter Dinklage), Supporting Actress (Lena Headey), Guest Actress (Diana Rigg), Writing, and Direction (Neil Marshall for Watchers on the Wall). Other nominations are Casting in a Drama, two entries in the Cinematography category (for Anette Haellmigk, who acted as director of photography for a six of last season’s episodes, as well as Jonathan Freeman, also responsible for several episodes), Costuming, Hairstyling, Interactive Program (for HBO’s use of Instagram and Facebook), Makeup, Music Composition, Prosthetic Makeup, Sound Editing, Sound Mixing, Stunt Coordination, Art Direction, and Visual Effects.

It’s a tough field in the major categories, especially with Breaking Bad‘s final season under consideration, and performances by its supporting cast in Aaron Paul and Anna Gunn, while a HBO sister program True Detective has Cary Fukunaga’s direction and Nic Pizzolatto’s writing to contend with as well. Still, as they say, it’s an honor to be nominated. The Emmy awards will be handed out on August 25th.