The 'A Song of Ice and Fire' Domain


Of Direwolf Pups and Leases

A nice catch from Daniel, a reader at Winter is Coming, who noted the sale of the litter of Siberian Husky puppies which were used for the Stark children’s direwolf pups. The only thing I can add to that is that from what I was told, two puppies were quite pale/white, and were named Milk and Cream; you can guess which of the pups they represented. The last of the litter appears to have sold six days ago. The photo of the puppy with a link to the original information is below.

While we normally eschew rumors, a commenter named Andrew notes that the studio manager at the Paint Hall has informed him that HBO had been asking about provisionally arranging a five year lease on two of the four “cells” in which the huge building is divided. Each cell is 16,000 square feet (1,487 square meters) in size. Andrew also notes that the pilot sets are presently still standing, and he speculates that the five year deal would be so they could leave sets standing from season to season.

We share this unverified item since it’s quite typical for productions to take long-term leases even in cases where a show may not go beyond a season, since the potential savings if the show is a success could make any penalties if the show comes to an end early seem like a reasonable choice. Showtime’s The Tudors had a similar lease with

Ardmore studios outside of Dublin, from what we’ve read. On the other hand, at least one past HBO series—Oz—only leased its shooting location on a year-to-year basis, apparently because of uncertainty that it would ever get a following season.

Finally, we should note that five years is a fairly standard figure for this sort of production lease. It does not imply that HBO intends either to go five seasons, or to only go five seasons if the show lasts so long.