Since then, he has worked for the production as a supplier, animal handler, and even appeared on-screen when his animals need help during shooting. According to Gracey, "It has funded the preservation of my rare and specialty breeds … Game Of Thrones has put me on the map. In a strange parallel, GoT also dodged a pig farm-related bullet.
During an appearance at a community event at her home village of Clutton in Somerset, Maisie Williams told the BBC News she very nearly missed her audition for the role of Arya Stark, because she wanted to visit a pig farm on a school trip instead. Which sounds exactly like something Arya Stark would do, to be honest.
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In the symbolism-heavy scene showing the Stark discovery of a dead direwolf and stag in episode 1, the wolf may have been fake but the stag was real. It had been shot before filming began, then butchered and gutted by the production team animal handler. By the time it came to filming two days later, the corpse was pretty ripe , and the actors struggled to keep from vomiting throughout the takes. Considering how good the performances were and how evil the showrunners are , this may have been done deliberately. Later in the series, Tywin Lannister was introduced in a scene where he was skinning a stag.
Again, it was a real stag, and it was really Charles Dance doing the skinning, a task which he was happy to do after reassuring the showrunners he wasn't a vegetarian. He had one day to learn how to skin a deer — according to Dance, "This butcher arrived with a dead animal and they gave me a little room to work in, gave me a sharp knife, and showed me how to skin it and spill the guts into a bucket. The next day, they gave me another dead animal, and we shot it. It was a bloody good time, but it took me two days to get the smell off my hands. Venison lover Nikolaj Coster-Waldau told Winter is Coming he had hoped the stag would be sent to catering to be served to the cast and crew, but sadly he missed out.
There's a joke in there somewhere about Danish actors and stag parties. When creating Dothraki and later Valyrian for the series, showrunners turned to creative linguist David J. Peterson, who turned the few scattered words and phrases invented by George R. Martin, and extrapolated them into detailed, functional languages.
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This has been invaluable for creating a sense of realism in the show, but there have been a few hiccups along the way. In one of the early scenes portraying the Dothraki, Jason Momoa's Khal Drogo watched two horny Dothraki braves fight to the death.
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Producers told him to ad-lib a line, so Momoa used a refrain from the Maori haka war dance: i te waka, or " in the canoe. Iain "Jorah Mormont" Glen got into the action as well, when producers forced him to ad-lib a Dothraki line at the last minute. The producers realized they needed Jorah to holler "Take all the gold and jewels! Trouble was, Peterson was asleep — when he woke up and emailed them the correct translation " Fichas ei hoshor ma dan! The moral of the story: sleep is stupid. Months later, a producer noticed the discrepancy between the line Peterson provided, and the actual sound of Glen's line — Peterson realized he would need to supply a Dothraki transliteration and translation for the nonsense babbling Glen had improvised.
After some effort, Peterson paired Glen's gibberish with a plausible Dothraki expression: Mas ovray movekkhi moskat , or "The loose valuables are for loading. Besides, since Jorah Mormont speaks Dothraki as a second language, it only makes sense he'd occasionally say something awkward. We don't really understand Peterson's work or how he does it, but we're glad he's being paid well for all this.
Scenes of Renly's camp in Season 2 were meant to be sunny and upbeat, a reflection of the ethos of the "knights of summer" who see war as a game. Problem was, the scenes were filmed in Ireland, where the weather is never predictable, and Hurricane Katia made her stand as a supporter of Stannis. Natalie "Margaery" Dormer ended up nearly frozen due to her costuming during the hurricane which she mistakenly thought was Hurricane Irene, which hit North America at roughly the same time , and she lamented the scenes weren't shot in sunny Croatia instead.
An understandable sentiment, given what the costume department gave her to work with. In one terrifying moment, gale force winds lifted up a marquee tent filled with extras who were peacefully eating lunch. The tent was wiped out, and five extras were taken to the hospital for treatment. An anonymous extra described the scene: "The floor started to come up, then the side rose up, the roof took off and beams starting falling down. People were getting out whatever way they could. My heart fell. Everyone was screaming.
There was bedlam in the whole place. It was actually terrifying with things swinging down and people getting knocked out. It was absolute chaos.
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So that was a real disaster but luckily everyone was OK in the end. Jason Momoa had a similar story of winds during scenes shot in Gozo where Daenerys walks into a roaring fire. He was relatively lucky: "They shot it in the daytime because they literally lit everything on fire and the winds were so heavy and blew everything away. Hurricane winds. I was in my trailer like 'haha'! Iceland provided some beautiful landscapes for the series, but the country came with its own challenges.
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For one: importing live horses is banned in Iceland, due to fears about diseases being transmitted to the local breeds, so the production crew were forced to use native horses, which are about the size of ponies. Having 6'5" actor Rory McCann riding such a small mount would've looked ridiculous, which is why the Hound and Arya spend so much time walking to the Vale.
Any scenes with horses filmed the beasts in the distance behind McCann and Maisie Williams, exploiting what screenwriter Bryan Cogman calls "the beauty of perspective. This may have been for the best. According to McCann, he had a rocky relationship with the horse he rode in earlier filming, a male steed named Bjork.
Yes, he was named after the female pop star. He's a horse, what does he care? Meanwhile, Williams was probably lucky Icelandic horses are comparatively small, considering she once fell off her horse while riding and got her foot caught in the reins. She described the situation to the Huffington Post with a charming offhandedness: "Yeah, it was really funny, actually. My leg was, like, caught up by my ear, and I was like, 'Oh, brilliant'.
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While A Song of Ice and Fire never shies away from sexual imagery, neither does it dwell on it. HBO's Game of Thrones , on the other hand, has been criticized for "sexposition," where dry, dialogue-heavy scenes get livened up by casual nudity. Martin, and a year-old boy named Adam Friedberg who adds most of the nudity. He says of his creative process : "I remember there was this one scene where a dude was talking to himself and I was like, why don't we add two naked ladies … Let's just say, the scene started working.
In an interview with the Empire podcast, Marshall described the surreal experience of "one of the exec producers leaning over your shoulder going 'You can go full front, you know'. I represent the pervert side of the audience, and I'm saying I want full frontal nudity in this scene, so you go ahead and do it.
We'd like to say "and the executive producer's name? Adam Friedberg," but since Marshall wants to continue working in the industry, he didn't deign to name names. Still, you can't prove us wrong.
One of the unavoidable issues with so much nudity in the series is the logistics of nudity behind the scenes. Though everyone involved is a professional, sometimes it's just unavoidably funny. Pedro "Oberyn" Pascal discussed how, during one of the orgy scenes, one of the actresses stayed disrobed between takes.
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This makes a lot of psychological sense, as repeatedly robing and disrobing in front of everyone could be more uncomfortable and lewd than just staying nude while waiting for the crew to sort their stuff out. Pascal described his amusement at having a naked person wandering around the green room during long breaks, where she spent the time waiting by playing Words With Friends with show creator David Benioff, and sitting next to a visibly uncomfortable Charles Dance while he tried to concentrate on his script.
If only we all had Charles Dance's problems. Nikolaj Coster-Waldau has a similar philosophy on nudity as part of the job. I've seen Mark Addy.