Game of Thrones is one of the most talked-about shows on television, and many members of the cast have become household names over the past six seasons. There are only two seasons left at this point, and it's looking like the five biggest stars will be making a lot of money for the final batches of episodes. The five may have signed contracts that will pay more than $2 million per episode.
Emilia Clarke, Kit Harington, Lena Headey, Peter Dinklage, and Nikolaj Coster-Waldau will earn up to £2 million per episodes in Seasons 7 and 8 of Game of Thrones, according to Daily Express. The lucrative contracts reportedly contain bonus clauses that will entitle the stars to percentages of syndication payments, which will come from the more than 170 countries where Thrones airs. If the reports of the £2 million per episode contracts are accurate, the five stars will become the highest-paid actors in TV history. Take that, Big Bang Theory!
Interestingly, the £2 million is a big bump from earlier estimates of the major five actors' salaries for Seasons 7 and 8. Back in 2016, Emilia Clarke, Kit Harington, Lena Headey, Peter Dinklage, and Nikolaj Coster-Waldau reportedly signed on for $500,000 per episode, which is still a hefty chunk of change for the last two seasons. We can't say at this point what did or did not change between then and now.
We learned a while ago that the final two seasons of Game of Thrones would be shorter than the first six, each of which ran for ten episodes. Seasons 7 and 8 combined will only run for 13 episodes, so the stars won't work too many episodes at their new rate, no matter how high the official number really is.
Of course, Game of Thrones isn't exactly a show known for pinching pennies. HBO shelled out $200,000 to shoot Cersei's famous Walk of Shame back in Season 5, and each episode of Season 6 cost about $10 million to produce. Kit Harington recently revealed that the show "spent an increasing amount of money on less episodes" for filming the remaining episodes of the series, which makes it clear that Thrones still had plenty of cash to play around with. Why not send some of that cash to the cast who played a big part in making the series the hit that it is today?
Game of Thrones has been on hiatus for nearly ten months now, but the end is in sight. Season 7 will debut on HBO on Sunday, July 16 at 9 p.m. ET, and the first look at what's ahead points to some big changes for all five of the biggest characters. Check out our breakdown of what we know so far about Season 7 for a peek ahead, and don't forget to check out our midseason TV premiere guide and our summer TV premiere schedule to discover all your viewing options now and in the coming weeks. Be sure to drop by our rundowns for cable/streaming and broadcast TV renewals and cancellations.