As they’re currently shooting Season 4 for an airdate at some point in 2014, there wasn’t any fresh footage from team Game Of Thrones at this year’s Comic-Con, but there was some very interesting post-match analysis on Season 3 from the likes of Kit Harington, Richard Madden, Emilia Clarke, that George R. R. Martin guy and the show creators David Benioff and D. B. Weiss. Below are some choice transcriptions of some choice quotes for you and your direwolf to ruminate upon.
Needless to say – though let’s just say it anyway – this contains several boatloads of spoilers for anyone who isn't completely up to date with the HBO fantasy epic.
Why does everyone have to die?
George R. R. Martin: “To make sure there are always new job opportunites for actors and actresses. It’s not just me – I’ll only take some of the bloodthirsty blame here.”
Emilia Clarke (after congratulations for her Emmy nomination): “I was going to speak in Valerian, but okay, I’ll speak English. It’s been a phenomenal season to film. She think she’s peaking in episode five when she’s getting her army, but her final episode was exhilarating.”
Do you read ahead in the books in advance of a season being shot?
Peter Dinklage (to the sound of screaming fans): “No, I read the past, not into the future.” “You become a dragon,” explains Harington. “I’d breathe fire in every scene… which I can actually do.”
How anxious were you about getting the Red Wedding right?
D.B. Weiss: “If we could get viewers to throw remote controls the way I threw the book across the room, I would be happy. If we could get to The Red Wedding, we could die happy. The face Michelle makes before she cuts Walder Frey’s wife’s throat. That howl… 20 times. Such a phenomenal performance.”
Michelle Fairley: “[That scene was] like a piece of music, you have to gradually go through it. There was a key change in the music [too], and it was like someone had walked over your grave, it gave you this chill.”
Weiss: “[Composer] Ramin Djawadi is one of our unsung heroes. It had to be a song enough in the audience’s minds that they’d recognise it.” (The original plan was to use the same theme as the opening titles’, but this was decided against early on.)
Do you think of Sam as a hero?
Kit Harington (on his character’s development): John’s trying to find a father figure. He’s always drawn to these strong-willed men, and they find him appealing, they want to nurture him and raise him into their form. What’s interesting is that he’s sick of that now and he turns into that person himself. It’s going to be an interesting season to play.”
Peter Dinklage (on working with Charles Dance): “You can’t imagine any other actor playing that role. Charles gives me a shoulder rub every after every scene we have together, as fellow thespians. Each of the three siblings lack what the others have. You’re only as good as the actors you work with, and fortunately I’m working with some really good ones.”
What were you doing when The Red Wedding aired?
Martin: “The books have sold in Mongolia, Iran, Iceland… there was nowhere to go. I hunkered down in Santa Fe and weathered the storm. This happened before with readers 13 years ago throwing their books into their fireplace. Hopefully on-one did that with their televisions.”
Do you tell certain actors where their characters will end up?
Martin: “Some of the actors want to know, some don't want to know. But if they do ask, I’ll tell them. But there is an adaptation aspect, so the books and scripts are not the same.”
Other highlights from the panel included an In Memoriam supercut of every death in Game Of Thrones so far, from Lommy (remember him?) to Rakharo, The Thirteen to Doreah, not forgetting King Robert Baratheon, Lady and Grey Wind... everyone, really. Take a look for yourself below for proof. There's also a snippet of Khal Drogo, whose alter ego, Jason Mamoa, burst onto the stage half-way through to shout, “I’m still alive!” Top GoT tip: he’s not.
Season 4 of Game Of Thrones will arrive at around about April time next year.