Interesting facts about The Games of Throne
Interesting facts about The Games of Throne
Updated on July 26, 2022 14:25 PM by Anthony Christian
That's how it looks on a January Monday in Belfast, where Game of Thrones is filming its seventh season. No one appears to believe the giants that have enthralled HBO's hit series exist in any true sense.
Even so, seeing British actress Emilia Clarke, who plays banished goddess Daenerys, straddling the "buck" on a small stage at Titanic Studios, a film complicated decided to name after this city's other famed massive export, is rather shocking.
According to the show
Clarke's device resembles a large pommel horse and continues to move in sync with a digital animation of what would become a dragon. Among takes, Clarke will not say much.
A wind gun explodes her with just enough force that I'm concerned about the dignity of her ash blond wig. (According to the show's hair developer, the color is the consequence of 212 months of testing and seven rapid prototyping.)
Clarke repeatedly looks down at a camouflaging threshold on the floor as episode filmmaker Alan Taylor yells, "Now!" Several graphic supervisors keep an eye on monitoring devices nearby.
The first season of the show
Clarke and I talk in her teaser already when she heads to the small stage, at the start of a long week playing a now-iconic personality. Behind the scenes, however, there is more toil than triumph. The show's first season was deduced with Daenerys hatching three baby dragons, each the size of a Pomeranian.
They've grown to the size of a 747 since then. She claims I'm a little girl; I'm barely 5 feet tall. "You'll be strapped in and go nuts; they warn Emilia, so climb those stairs and tackle that big problem. Hey, everyone, you say. Now, who is the shorty?
She has reason to be optimistic. Clarke and the entire cast will start trying to bring Thrones to a close with the first of its final eight seasons on July 16. Thrones, a tenacious innovator initiated by two TV newcomers in 2011, will end its run as the world's largest and most popular show.
It's the most pirated show ever
When platforms like video content and video on demand are factored in, an average of more than 23 million Americans watched each episode last season.
And, because it's the most illegally downloaded show ever, millions more observe it in ways that aren't counted. Thrones, the world record for most Emmy Awards ever won by a prime-time sequence, is available in over 170 countries.
People keep living in a made golden age of television, brought about by hit shows like The Sopranos, Mad Men, and Having broken Bad.
All had finely honed information on the nature of humanity and evil that reshaped expectations of what television could do. However, that period ended around when Having broken Bad was canceled in 2013.
We're in what came next.
We're now amid an unparalleled glut of programming, with video content services like Netflix, Amazon, and Hulu joining the fray. There is now a prestigious show for every possible viewer, resulting in smaller viewers and fewer completely original stories.
Which combines the mental complexity of the best television with the grandiosity of old Hollywood.
Did you enjoy shows with a single antihero? Thrones has five Tony Sopranos constructing their empires on blood, five Walter Whites uncovering how far they'll go to win, and five Don Drapers who are unapologetic about their narcissistic.
Oh, and they're all playing out their drama against the most stunning out-of-this-world scenery.
A massive global apparatus powers the phenomenon
The occurrence is fueled by a piece of massive worldwide equipment that produces the equivalent of five big-budget, feature-length movies in a typical final season.
Even as the series has managed to grow in every way imaginable over the years—it now shoots all over the world, with each episode costing at least $10 million—it has remained brought to life by one simple question: Who will win the game at that point? And if Game of Thrones has tried to teach us anything, it's that every reign must come to an end.
George R.R. Martin released A Game of Thrones, the first novel in his A Song of Ice and Fire sequence, in 1996. (At the time, he saw it as a trilogy.) Five of the scheduled seven quantities have now been released.) Martin had been disappointed by the limitations of television as an author for shows like CBS's The Twilight Zone and Beauty and the Beast in the late 1980s.
He decided that switching to prose would require him to write stuff "as big as my imagination." "I'm going to have all the characters I want, and ginormous castles, and dragons, and dreadful wolves, and thousands of years of recorded history, but a complicated plot," Martin told himself. It's okay because it's a book. It's unfilmable."
The books became a hit
The books were a big hit, particularly after A Clash of Kings in 1999 and A Storm of Swords a year later. Martin, who lives in Santa Fe, New Mexico, has been primarily in comparison to J.R.R. Tolkien, the author of The Lord of the Rings. Martin's Westeros, like Tolkien's Middle-earth, is a land with its own set of rules. First and foremost, magic exists. Second, cold weather is approaching.
As the series begins, a long summer is coming to an end. Finally, no one is safe. Religious movements clash with old, direct competitor residences vie for the capital's Iron Throne, and an undead army pushes against humanity's border, recognized as the Wall.
The wealthy and obnoxious Lannisters
Such as the incestuous twins Cersei and Jaime, are among Throne's numerous clans. He helped to ensure her ascension through violence, and she is the queen at the wedding. Tyrion, a short-statured "imp," is the most astute student of power.
Then there's the Starks, who are led by duty-bound Ned. His kids, Robb, Sansa, Arya, Bran, Rickon, and "bastard" Jon Snow, will be dispersed across the Pride Lands.
An overthrown family with a claim to the throne. Thrones inevitably turn into an all-out brawl that helps make the Wars of the Roses look like a Family Dispute.
Following director Peter Jackson's early-2000s film
Following director Peter Jackson's third film of Tolkien's masterwork in the early 2000s, Martin was approached by manufacturers to turn his books into "the next Lord of the Rings franchise."
However, the Thrones tale was too large, and potential participants recommended trimming it to focus solely on Daenerys or Snow, for example. Martin declined all of them. The point of his story's scope was its breadth.
David Benioff and D.B. Weiss, two middleweight novelists, had reached similar conclusions and obtained Martin's approval at what the author refers to as "that renowned lunch that turned into a dinner, even though we were out for four or five hours" in 2006.
The two writers believed Thrones could be made as a top-quality theatre, and they approached HBO with an ambitious pitch that year.
Carolyn Strauss says
"They were speaking about this book series I'd never heard of," recalls Carolyn Strauss, then-president of HBO's film division.
I was one of the people who observed the rapt expressions in the Lord of the Rings theatre, but I'm not on this particular ship. I thought, Wow, this sounds extremely interesting." Who is to say? It might turn out to be a significant event.
HBO bought the idea and gave it to Benioff and Weiss, who became show producers for the first time. Benioff was best known for adapting his novel The 25th Hour into a screenwriter that Spike Lee directed.
Weiss also had a novel to his name. In 1995, the two met in a literature program in Dublin and later reconnected in the United States.
I made the decision I wanted to write a screenplay, Benioff said to Vanity Fair. I asked [Weiss] if he would write a script with me because I had never written one and had no idea how to do it. He had already written many. It never got finished.
The pilot episode of Game of Thrones, shot in 2009, had a rocky start. Benioff and Weiss underestimated the amount of planning required to bring Martin's fantasy to life. To play a White Walker—mystic organisms from the North—they simply put an actor in a green-screen outfit and hoped for the best. You might be able to do that if you're trying to make Avatar.
They eventually reshot the pilot
"However, before we turn on the camera, we need to know what the creatures look like." They also struggled to portray Martin's nuanced protagonists. "Our friends—really smart, shrewd writers—didn't realize Jaime and Cersei were brother and sister," Benioff says of the show's disastrous first cut.
When Benioff and Weiss reflect on the first season, they find plenty to criticize. Their devotion to Martin's text, for example, transformed Peter Dinklage's Tyrion into "Eminem blond," according to Benioff.
(His hair was eventually darkened.) Nonetheless, the elements that have made the show a monster success were present—and audiences (3 million for the first finale episode of Thrones) pulled them up on them.
In the second-to-last episode
Ned Stark, the moral center of Season 1, played by the show's then-most renowned member of the cast (Sean Bean, who went on to star in The Lord of the Rings), is astonishingly beheaded.
The show had amassed sufficient fans by the third season's "Red Wedding," a far more gory culling, to submit the Web into a frenzy.
Thrones had already set the standard for all of television by refusing to settle for a simple happy ending in favor of delivering pleasure through brutality.
Even if you don't witness it, the characters and buzzwords from Game of Thrones have permeated pop culture (the apparent death of Snow was an international trending topic all summer in 2015).
Wandering around the Belfast set
The extent and neatness of the venture are astounding as one walks all around Belfast set. The wights, who look like zombies with pale faces and ragged furs, form a neat line as they wait for breakfast burritos. A few people smoke cigarettes outside the stage door, taking care not to get ash on one's worn-in tunics.
"At first, we had a spring with one big event, then two big events, and now we have a season where every incident is a big event," says Joe Bauer, the show's visual effects supervisor. Bauer and VFX producer Steve Kullback is in charge of a group of 14 FX stores from New Zealand to Germany that worked on the movie almost constantly.