Game of Thrones: News

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Exclusive: Game of Thrones Composer

HBO has kindly allowed us to break the word on one of the last major crew announcements for its production of Game of Thrones. They have informed us that Stephen Warbeck, has been selected to score the series. Warbeck’s best known for producing the soundtrack to Shakespeare in Love, for which he received the Academy Award. He has a long list of credits, including award-nominated films such as Billy Elliot and Proof, as well as other notable Hollywood productions such as Quills, Captain Corelli’s Mandolin, Charlotte Grey, and last year’s Princess Kaiulani.

Rather than leaving you with a sample of his Shakespeare in Love work, here’s a video for the soundtrack for Charlotte Grey which shows a nice range—7:40 in has an atmospheric, staccato piece of music that creates a great sense of tension and could almost fit right into the series as I envision it:

But just in case you want your memory refreshed… here’s a sampling of his Shakespeare in Love work:

Brilliant,memorable scores, to say the least, but bear in mind that Warbeck’s compositions may well be radically different (and influenced by things such as medieval music) compared to his previous work. Regardless, Warbeck’s a highlight in an already-amazing collection of cast and crew members.

UPDATE:

Here’s a remark that Miltos Yerolemou, who plays Syrio Forel, left in response to trolling at Winter is Coming’s post on this topic:

i know stephen warbeck personally and professionally. i worked with him when he arranged music with the royal shakespeare theatre and particularly when we worked with me on Othello. the amazing thing with this guy is that his musical knowledge is so vast. and he is the guy who can be given an idea and then just runs with it. always thorough, always surprising and a true collaborative creative to have on such a project where integrity and understanding of the material is more important than ‘star’ or known names. remember these big name people sometimes bring their own adgendas and styles with them. (sometimes a good thing, sometimes a bad thing).

be patient folks, from what you know about how carefully this project is being put together, do you really think they haven’t thought this through?

Overheard on Set

The Making Game of Thrones site has a new post which provides some obscure quotes from recent work on the production. Some of the remarks make us think of Wyvernwood’s Tollymore photos, where a number of different scenes were recently filmed, at least one of which would have involved dead bodies (and possibly fighting leading up to them).

NYC Focus Group for Ice and Fire Fans

The following is from a market research organization to fans of A Song of Ice and Fire:

Today we have a very exciting opportunity for all our A Song of Ice and Fire fans living in the New York City and surrounding area.

We are currently recruiting fans of the A Song of Ice and Fire book series to participate in a focus group discussion happening on November 9th in New York City. This will be an exciting opportunity to share your thoughts, passion and ideas with fellow fans.

If you:
a) have read and enjoyed Game of Thrones and b) are able to attend a 2.5 hour discussion group on November 9th in New York City (all participants will be required to supply their own transport). Please, contact us either by email (.(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)) or by phone (212-473-6000) and we¹ll give you more details.

Dothraki Creator Interviewed

Via the Language Creation Society, we learn that David J. Peterson has been interviewed by a Esperanto-enthusiast magazine, Usona Esperanto. The interview discusses how Petersen came to conlang and provides some new details (and words) of Dothraki.

An extended interview with extra material can be found at the site of Jim Henry, the interviewer.

Hodor on Hodor

Fans at Octocon in Dublin this past weekened recieved a pleasant surprise when Kristian Nairn, the actor cast as Hodor, appeared with George R.R. Martin to discuss HBO’s Game of Thrones. The Rabbit and LugaJetGirl, two fans who were present, have written up reports on the panel which can be found Here and here respectively.

Among the more notable bits? A composer for the series has been selected, but has yet to be announced, according to the report. Also, Kristian provides an intriguing piece of information regarding a change in the character’s appearance.

As an added bonus, the Rabbit took a few pictures of George and Kristian together. Here’s one of them:

Kristian Nairn and GRRM
A Kingsguard and a Crone

Via WiCnet, we learn that HBO has confirmed actor Ian Beattie has been cast in the role of Ser Meryn Trant, one of the seven knights of the Kingsguard. He’s due to film at the end of October with Miltos Yerolemou, who plays Syrio Forel. Miltos recently revealed that he’s due to film a scene that’s brand new and not from the books, as well. Possibly Lord Stark’s hiring of Arya’s “dancing master”... ?

Also intriguingly, we have a report that a casting call has gone out for a “head priestess” of the Dothraki, described as being in her 50’s, of mixed race or Mediterranean in appearance, and she must have a good singing voice to pronounce a prophecy. This role is needed for episode number 6.

This would be one of the dosh khaleen, the crones who rule over Vaes Dothrak and maintain the rituals of the Dothraki people. Although there’s no clear hierarchy to the dosh khaleen, in the novel the crone who is depicted most is a “bent and shrivelled stick of a woman”, suggesting that the oldest of the women—who are all former khaleesis, consigned to this ritual role following the death of the khal to whom they were wed—takes a leading role in rituals.

Bronn in Action

After posing a quiz question (a rather spoilerish one at that, actually—naughty, naughty!), HBO has posted a new still from the Game of Thrones production that features Jerome Flynn as the sellsword Bronn. Flynn’s almost unrecognizable to my eye, and I suspect this photo will ease the concerns of some who know him best (or perhaps worst, depending on who you ask) from his Robson & Jerome days when his casting was announced. He really looks the part!

The Mountain Talks Fight Scenes

Conan Stevens, the actor cast as the huge and brutal Ser Gregor Clegane, has posted about the various concerns and issues with fight scenes. He includes a number of anecdotes, including two from HBO’s Game of Thrones concerning the dangers of equipment failure and how a character’s style is developed:

“In GoT during a fight I hit a sword on the flat rather than the edge in one sequence and the sword bent severely and whipped at my face narrowly missing whacking me - steel and faces don’t mix well”
“In GoT I pay a knight in heavy armour with a large sword, now I, and important others, see this character as lacking finese, no fine sword play more of a “might makes right” mentality with smashing powerful blows - much akin to my own fight style. This is something we did in Pro-Wrestling too, I would pull my speed and do big but slow powerful looking moves, giving my opponent the edge in speed thus giving the audience a believable contest. These ideals have to translate into how you move about during the fight, footwork, everything is modified by this.”

In related news, Conan reports that the action film he co-wrote and co-stars in, Bangkok Adrenaline, has had its U,S. release just two days ago. A perfect opportunity to get a look at the 7’ tall actor! He provides a link to the “un"official fan site for the film, which describes its origins and provides links to clips.

Message Decoded

Via WICnet, it seems someone named tek has already decoded Lysa’s coded message. Wow! Full details behind the extended text:

Making Game of Thrones: Fruit Ninjas and Secret Messages

Bryan Cogman provides a post written during the Shane’s Castle tourney filming for HBO’s Game of Thrones, filmed back in August, and it’s full of interesting details ... like the Fruit Ninja craze that has swept the crew. And that the tourney—depicted in two separate chapters of A Game of Thrones—is split across episodes IV and V. But one detail leapt out at us as just the sort of thing we love best, that graphic artist Jim Stanes was working on the production and that he had done a great design for House Royce (Bronze Yohn and his sons were at the tourney in the novels).

We quickly found his blog, where we noticed he worked on Kingdom of Heaven (David, Dan, if you’re reading this—we’ve always imagined the Dornish look much like that!) and then @straphe pointed out to us that Stanes had uploaded the Targaryen arms back in December. I did a little more digging and stumbled across this beauty, described as a coded message from the production.

Before the image loaded, I of course thought it was Lysa’s to Catelyn .... but the script is so radically different from our own (which is what is being used for Westerosi)

that I believe it represents a Valyrian script as used in the Free Cities

. Of course, the fact that he uploaded it back in December suggests it was from the pilot, where only Lysa’s message to Catelyn really makes any sense.

Gemma Jackson on the Wall

The Making Game of Thrones site from HBO has a brand new entry in the Artisans series, revisiting production designer Gemma Jackson as she discusses the functional winch built for scenes shot in Castle Black. This makes a nice companion piece to Bryan Cogman’s earlier post. You can watch the video below:

It’s interesting that the lift is basically a repurposed industrial building site lift, with much of the machinery tucked away and some work done to make it seem like a primitive medieval contraption of wood and iron.

Photo of Malta Filming?

Via the Rabbit, we have what may be the very first image from Game of Thrones filming in Malta:

Malta 2010 (69)

Posted by Flickr member bertiebears, he describes it as the set for another film, The Devil’s Double, being filmed in Mdina. He appears to be in error as that film has wrapped production and is, in any case, a story about Saddam Hussein’s double. This morning, a Game of Thrones extra said he was 100% certain that was an exterior shot being filmed for King’s Landing and added “yes gold cloaks on horseback. Girl to right in foreground wearing exactly same costume as female Tourney peasants.”

Compare the costuming of the horsemen to the gold cloak in the background of this screencap, and the costuming of the extras on foot to what’s seen here and here. Note in particular the white-bearded man in red and white robes—possibly a septon—in the Sandor tourney screencap, and the white-bearded man in the background of the Malta photo wearing what seems to be the same garment.

We have to say, the costuming of the people on foot is a little baffling to us, as our first thought was that these may be Pentoshi. The clothing depicted here is extremely similar to Graeco-Roman costume of the ancient world, and seems markedly different from the glimpses had from the In Production behind the scenes video. But given that the extra in question has taken part in filming over a number of days, including the tourney that featured so many extras, we’ll take it as a given that commoners in King’s Landing wear some notably different costumes from the nobility.

King’s Justice Filming in Malta

In what appears to be a confirmation that Game of Thrones will use Malta for at least some King’s Landing exterior scenes, musician Wilko Johnson—cast as Ser Ilyn Payne, the royal executioner—will be filming there, according the Essex Echo and their discussion with his manager. It’s indicated that he had filmed for a week in September in the Belfast area, and there’ll be more shooting later this month in Malta. The article provides a great quote:

“He pulled his usual scary face on the set, but the director told him ‘you don’t need to do scary, you are scary’.”

Sopranos Director Joins Game of Thrones

Timothy van Patten, one of HBO’s most well-known and well-regarded directors with credits including The Sopranos, Sex and the City, The Pacific, Deadwood, Rome, The Wire, and nearly half the episodes of Boardwalk Empire, has come on board to direct at least one episode of HBO’s new fantasy drama series. He joins previously announced directors Brian Kirk, Daniel Minahan, and Alan Taylor.

Although this information has unofficially been floating around for a week or two (a hat-tip to The Rabbit for first noting it to us), HBO asked us to hold off on reporting it as GRRM had been intending to do it. However, with his busy schedule and departure for Ireland for awhile, they gave us the go ahead. We can certainly understand that, given his profile among A-list television directors.

Cogman on Castle Black Filming

There’s a new post on HBO’s Making Game of Thrones site from writer and production right-hand man Bryan Cogman. Dating somewhere from mid-August, we think, he discusses filming scenes for episode III and IV at the site of the Castle Black set in Magheramorne Quarry. He notes that the set contains both exterior and interior locations, and lists a few of them as well as well as the functioning winch elevator.