Following The Walking Dead is another hugely anticipated TV panel, Game of Thrones. Those of us still reeling from the Red Wedding are likely eager to see what the cast and writers have to say about the bloodbath that was Season 3 and what's ahead for the series' anticipated fourth season. Set to appear at the panel is author George R.R. Martin, executive producers David Benioff and D.B. Weiss, and an excellent cast line-up, including but not limited to Emilia Clarke, Peter Dinklage, Kit Harington, Rose Leslie, Michelle Fairley and Richard Madden. And because it wouldn't be a party without Samwell Tarly, John Bradley is also on the list!
Here's the official panel description:
Friday July 19, 2013 2:50pm - 3:45pm - Hall H
Stay tuned, we'll be updating soon! And just a warning that I'm a huge fan of the show, but I don't read the books, so I'm going to do my best to relay what book-related information might come up. Name misspellings are probably inevitable and for that, I apologize in advance.
2:58 p.m - Starting this a minute or two late because of wifi issues that I hope don't persist. The panel begins with a "Hard to Say Goodbye to Yesterday" montage of death scenes. The crowd went nuts for Vyseris and some of the other big deaths. And then the panel comes onto the stage. Hall H is louder than ever right now, cheering for Per Dinklage, Kit Harrington, John Bradley and others. Harington got extra squeals from girls. King of the North screams for Richard Madden. Huge applause for Emilia Clarke. George R.R. Martin comes out next and then moderator Elvis Mitchell. Mitchell calls George out for being heartless. Martin says he has many characters, "so, killing a few, there's always more..." He points out that David and Dan have killed many characters that are still alive in the books. D.B. Weiss says it was always the plan for Robb and Catelyn to die.
3:04 - Moderator addresses Richard about his death and someone yells "King of the North!" He says he misses doing the show. Michelle Fairley says she's been reading the book. She knew how many years she signed on for so she knew what was coming. She says the script is the bible. Benioff says they leave it up to the actors whether or not they'll read all the books. Dinklage says he avoids the books. He doesn't want to know what's coming. Rose Leslie says Jon deserved the goodbye she gave him. Harington says some of the most brutal scenes are the most fun to film. Rose says Ygritte thought she and Jon were going to be a team, so it's horrible when he rides off and she didn't want him to get away with it.
3:10 - Emilia talking about getting the news that she was nominated for an Emmy award. Benioff and Weiss got nominated for the "Red Wedding" episode. Jason Momoa briefly interrupted to come onto the stage and give Emilia a big kiss. The crowd when nuts and Emilia responded, "My sun and stars!" They go back to talking about the Red Wedding and how they had to keep the scene a secret. Talking about Fairley's "howl" and her and Richard's performances. It turned out better than they had hoped. Michelle says it's like a piece of music. You have to work your way through it. You don't want to overplay it too quickly. She credits the script too and David Nutter. There was a key moment in the music. The room darkens, the light goes, the candles go out and the door closes and the music comes up. That's when Catelyn knows something's not quite right. Weiss talking about Rains of Castamere. They talked about using the show's theme song as Rains of Castamere but ended up going with the song that played.
3:19 - John says he thinks Sam's always been a hero. He thinks it's braver to be the underdog all the time. Sam lived in his mind for so long. He absorbs information. He has an amazing curiosity. The one moment that turns his life around when he becomes a hero is a moment of complete gut instinct. His sword was broken and he had to find a weapon and it just so happened that he found the answer to a question people have been searching for for years. Sam needs to get out of his own brain. Sam being a father figure, his experience with father figures isn't good, so he doesn't want the new Sam to be affected by bad parenthood. Harington says Jon is draw to father-figures that are strong-willed men. He says what's coming up, he gets sick of searching for that and he turns into that.
3:24 - Rose talks about how Ygritte falling for Jon changes what she knows. Peter Dinklage talking about Tywin. He says Charles gives him a shoulder rub after every one of those scenes between Tywin and Tyrion to make sure they're still ok. The Lannister trio (Jaime, Cersei and Tyrion) are three different parts of a whole. Dinklage brings up Joffrey, saying Tywin feels the same way about Joffrey as Tyrion does, he just doesn't say it. George couldn't avoid TVs when the Red Wedding episode aired. He bunkered down in Santa Fe and managed to survived "the storm" of reactions.
3:29 - Benioff talks about fans trying to protect people from spoilers. So many people knew about the Red Wedding before it aired but so many people were in the dark and surprised by it. Weiss says everyone kept quiet about Ned Stark dying (except his mom). Emilia talks about Daenerys' self-doubt and the risk that she took by putting trust into her dragons. Moderator talks about Daenerys getting her arrogance back. Emilia politely corrects him, calling it confidence. She's asking advice less and starting to make decisions more.
3:34 - Richard Madden talking about connecting with a decision. Robb Stark always connected in the moment and is present. He's done everything he possibly can, and when the wedding starts everything's looking good. He's ready to storm King's Landing and cut off Joffrey's head. And that's just not what happens.
We get a deleted scene featuring Pycelle as he tries to talk his way back onto the hand's council.
3:41 - Dinklage says it's amazing doing the show and he gets to be on t-shirts - in response to a fan who's wearing a "Keep Calm and Tyrion" t-shirt. And he gets to go to the most beautiful places doing the show. Someone asks about a prequel series, which would bring Ned Stark back (and Sean Bean wouldn't be dying in something - that gets some laughs). Martin says he needs to finish his current book and he needs to write quickly because the show is catching up wtih him. He says he might write another story in Westeros, but he doesn't think he'd do a prequel. The stuff in the earlier war is all being revealed in the currecnt books. But he might go back earlier and write something about the Mad King and his nine mistresses. Martin says no offense to Sean Bean. He's a brilliant actor, but he does die so well.
3:45 - Emilia says getting to play Daenerys is the most glorious experience as an actor. Reading her scripts, it's a phenomenal experience and it empowers her as a woman. She says it's a wonderful feeling to make other women feel empowered - in response to a fan question.
3:47 - George will tell the cast members some things about their characters if they ask, but what happens in the books doesn't always happen in the series. And that's it for the panel!