Game of Thrones: News

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Game Of Thrones Reel: First Impressions

Thanks to the good offices of HBO, Linda and I were give the opportunity to watch the 15 minute clip compilation/“sizzle” reel that was first aired to critics at the TCA Winter tour. We’ve watched it several times now, and have discussed it a fair bit. After some consideration, this first post is just going to be about the general impression it makes, the sort of things we think anyone would be interested in. We’ll post some more detailed impressions of some of the specific scenes we see in a future post.

Tentative Hungarian Airdate

And just as we said no international braodcasters had given firm airdates, a report comes in that HBO Hungary has promised they will make attempts to air the show the very day after the American premiere. That would be April 18th. The original blog post can be found here. The key quote, as provided by Google Translator, is:

“The series’ first episode on April 17 show in America, and the Hungarian audience, we plan to - just like in 2010 for The Pacific - The Pacific in the case - the day after the world premiere to see the pilot.”

From what The Rabbit and ipopic tell us, HBO Adria also showed The Pacific the day after its U.S. air date. This gives not only Hungarian fans, but possibly fans in the Balkan areas covered by HBO Adria, a serious boost to their hopes to see the show only very shortly after their lucky American and Canadian compatriots.

Latin American fans, how has HBO Latin America aired programs in relation to the U.S.? This could provide a hint as to when the show will premiere in your country.

New Photos Annotated

The latest release of photos for HBO’s Game of Thrones are now in our gallery, with our usual annotations and links to related material. Most of the images have been placed in the character gallery, beginning with Bran. Two of the images stood out for us as better indicating scenes from the show, so we’ve placed them in the Preview gallery instead. You can see the thumbnails, and click through to their specific pages, below:

Finally, we’ve updated one of our screencaps from “Inside Game of Thrones” with additional information, now that certain things were confirmed over at TCA. You can check out the image, featuring our first blurry glimpse of the Mad King Aerys, here.

International Update: Spain and South Africa

Although we still don’t have an exact airdate for HBO’s Game of Thrones in any territories besides the United States, there has been some more news of interest to international fans of the series. On the 7th, Variety reported that Canal+ Spain had secured rights to HBO’s original programming in a multi-year deal. This comes after our October report that Canal+ had specifically secured rights to A Game of Thrones. This move seems to be a trend with HBO’s international dealings.

Canal+ has since released a Spanish-language trailer, but no premiere date has been given beyond “soon”.

Furthermore, a tip from @aegjung points us to South African journalist and critic Thinus Ferreira’s exclusive report that the South African satellite channel M-Net has secured rights to the series, as well as a number of other highly-anticipated programs. The show will air on the M-Net Series channel. Again, no air date information is currently available.

Finally, via @GameOfThrones, we’ve been informed that HBO intends to publicize international airdates when HBO’s broadcast partners finalize and announce them. This is, so far as we know, a somewhat unusual step for HBO, and shows the growing, global entertainment market as well as a specific awareness about just how large an international fanbase George R.R. Martin’s novels have.

David Benioff Interview

Another Game of Thrones interview piece from Access Hollywood, although this one is written rather than videoed. These remarks from executive producer and writer David Benioff comes from the roundtable with journalists which we expect to hear more from shortly. In the piece, Benioff is quoted discussing the maturity of the subject matter:

More Interviews: GRRM, Dinklage, Clarke

After today’s other interviews turned up, we expected some more were going to be coming out of TCA ... and it looks like we were right. Continuing the streak of excellent interviews was Winter is Coming with their report from the roundtable interview with George R.R. Martin, which several other reporters sat in on. It sounds similar to the interviews conducted in Belfast with some of the cast and crew.

George, as always, makes some excellent points, stressing the reality of television budgeting as well as the fact that while he has an extremely strong visual image of Westeros, the interpretation of the production very much works for him and he expects most fans will be the same. He also discusses a scene very briefly glimpsed in the extended Inside Game of Thrones video, confirming details that were told to me in October but which I was asked not to discuss at the time (I’ve updated our screencap with most of these details).

And then Access Hollywood jumped back into things with not one, but _two_ new video interviews featuring Peter Dinklage (Tyrion) and Emilia Clarke (Daenerys), which you can see below. Clarke’s interview is even more spoile-filled than Bean’s, if you can believe it!

Sean Bean Video Interview

Access Hollywood has a new, video interview with Sean Bean from this past weekend’s TCA press tour. See below for the details as he discusses who Ned Stark is, something of his training for the role, and more:

Interview Excerpts from Mo Ryan

Maureen Ryan has shared excerpts from her one-on-one interviews with executive producers David Benioff and D.B. Weiss, author George R.R. Martin, and actress Emilia Clarke, over at her Stay Tuned blog for AOL’s TV Squad.

Some great tidbits, such as Benioff and Weiss using George’s reactions as a weather-gauge for fan reaction (good idea), George emphasizing that he believes the series will be the best-looking fantasy series that has ever been on television (but it won’t be The Lord of the Rings, because LotR had a far greater budget for comparable hours), and Clarke discussing her first day of filming as well as how the separation of her character from many of the others didn’t mean she didn’t get chances to socialize with fellow actors who weren’t part of her storyline.

Looking forward to the full interviews down the road, as April 17 approaches!

Edited: Mo and Ryan McGee have put up a second part of their Talking TV with Ryan and Ryan podcast, in which Maureen discusses TCA and Game of Thrones. She even includes a shoutout to Westeros.org, although a slip of the tongue meant your humble webmaster did not quite get his right name (close, though—Emilio is my godfather’s name, as it happens!) Thanks, Mo!

Sean Bean Interviewed

The Winter TCA has wrapped more-or-less, so far as HBO’s official presentation goes (recapped here), but quite a lot of interviews were arranged through and around it. Now Collider is the first to come out with a full-length interview of Sean Bean, who plays the lead role of Lord Eddard Stark. Some of the quotations appear to be woven in from Bean’s remarks at the presentation, but a large portion is entirely new and likely came from a roundtable or a one-on-one interview.

Some interesting remarks, including Bean reiterating that he did in fact read A Game of Thrones, not just the Ned chapters, and just how hot it was in Malta. However… if you know nothing about the series besides what you’ve read here and in official releases, we suggest you don’t read this one if you don’t want to be spoiled. Suffice it to say, some of the actor’s remarks give a rather major detail away…

Questions for Emilia Clarke & Sean Bean

The terrific Maureen Ryan has offered on Twitter to ask one question each to Emilia Clarke and Sean Bean during one-on-one interviews taking place today.

To submit a question, you’ll need a Twitter account. Reply to her tweet. She’ll pick the most appealing ones to ask, but you only have until 12PM Pacific (that’s about 3 hours) to get it in! Thanks to Mo for offering fans this opportunity.

Reports from TCA

We expect yet more to trickle out today, but here’s a few more write-ups from journalists who were at the Winter TCA:

Recap of the TCA Panel and More

A lot happened today that should be of interest to any expectant Game of Thrones fanatic, and we’re going to try and recap all the highlights for you, culled from Twitter. Many, many thanks to the journalists, bloggers, and other media types who made this possible with their tweets. There was something of a carnival atmosphere which made everything that much more exciting:

Game of Thrones Premieres April 17th

Via James Hibberd, we now have a firm date on the premiere for Game of Thrones: April 17th! We knew it was going to be April, we knew it was going Sunday ... but now we know just what day in April it is.

If my math’s right, that means ... 100 days to go. Mark your calendars!

More from the Game of Thrones Screening

We’ve been waiting quite eagerly to hear more about the 15 minute extended trailer, which we reported on last night. Now there’s not just one, but two quite detailed reports. Naturally, the first came from Winter is Coming, and includes commentary from Fire and Blood. Some interesting details in there, from the minor things—the change to the maester’s chain from a close-fitting collar to a long, broad loop (I’ve known about this since my visit to the Castle Black set, as Peter Vaughan [Maester Aemon] was wearing in the scene I witnessed filming)—to more substantial matter such as several brand-new scenes.

And now from critic (and fellow ASoIaF-enthusiast) Maureen Ryan has posted a thorough recap, breaking it down into general categories and going some of her likes and dislikes. For ourselves, the most notable bit was that Mo’s initial concerns about what she saw with the eastern scenes seem to have been assuaged a fair bit by Emilia Clarke, Harry Lloyd, and company. Excellent to hear! We expect to be hearing from quite a few more critics today, as there’s to be additional screenings.

Once all the madness is over, perhaps we’ll discuss some of the little details that have been changed in relation to the books, based on all these various reports, from the maester’s chain of office to the stained glass in the throne room and even the eyeliner that graces Khal Drogo. If anyone has any additional questions about some of these details, feel free to comment and I’ll see if I can address them in relation to the text.

Extended Trailer Screened to Critics

At the Winter TCA tour, HBO has now screened the 15 minute extended trailer of Game of Thrones for journalists in the run-up to Friday’s thirty-minute presentation and various interviews with GRRM, the executive producers David Benioff and Dan Weiss, and actors Sean Bean, Peter Dinklage, and Emilia Clarke. Thanks to WiCnet, who’s fortunate enough to be on the scene, here’s a quick preliminary run-down of the scenes shown, in the order that they were shown: