Monthly Archives: August 2011

Game of Thrones Special Effects: CGI & Green Screen in Season 1

Call me an ignoramus, but I didn’t catch all the details that qualify as “special effects” in HBO’s Game of Thrones when I watched it this past season.

I think I really believed that they either found a magical location with these really cool castles or had them built. Because, it’s easy to build castles on location, right?

Hey, I didn’t think the Wall was real. I’m not THAT dumb’n. I thought maybe it was claymation or something.

What’s the secret? Green screen was heavily used to create all those awesome castle turrets and spires! The trick is, they make sets of the bottom half of what they want and green screen the tops, so they can add in the towers, pillars and whatnot. The stallion statues outside of Vaes Dothrak? The Horse Gate, my friends, is all CGI. Sorry! You can’t buy it on ebay. :(

Even though Peter Dinklage is pretty badass, they weren’t really going to just drop him on the edge of a cliff. Obviously, he’d fly away or something if he had to wait too long. There’s lots of filming left for him to do! So instead they greenscreened it to save time lugging all the gear up there. It’s essentially win-win.

And there are some other added touches that required CGI; you don’t just get that much snow south of the Wall, especially not in Ireland in the summer! They pretty much created Winterfell, The Eyrie and King’s Landing out of thin air. Since you probably realize that the Wall is not real, then you won’t be too surprised to see that the elevator is just a prop, like a medieval Tardis. I’d LOVE to see Tyrion pissing off the “Wall” in green screen behind-the-scenes!

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Season 2 Casting Chugs Along…

Last week saw a few more new faces added to the cast of HBO’s Game of Thrones.

British actor Ralph Ineson (The Bill, Harry Potter movie series) has been cast as Dagmer Cleftjaw of the Ironborn. He joins the likes of the Greyjoys and the reaver Black Lorren as representatives of the Iron Islands.

Lucian Msamati (The No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency) has been tapped to play the pirate Salladhor Saan, friend of former smuggler Davos Seaworth. So he rounds out the Stannis supporters.

Still no mention of the The Reeds, who play a prominent role in Bran’s storyline. Game of Thrones needs Crannogmen! And Beric Dondarrion’s Brotherhood Without Banners needs more brothers, like Thoros of Myr and Lem Lemoncloak. No word of Highgarden. Dorne, too, has yet to represent.

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It never ends….

Peter Dinklage was not in the movie In Bruges

Peter Dinklage was not in the movie In Bruges, yet his Wikipedia page is changed at least twice a month

This is pretty much a continuing saga…. A vigilant editor has put a note in there letting everyone who tries to edit the Peter Dinklage Wikipedia page that he was NOT in the movie In Bruges.

Wikipedia is a precarious world of words.

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Podrick Payne is Cast!

Finally, the confirmation we’ve been waiting for! Young Scottish actor Daniel Portman (Outcast) has been chosen to play the part of Podrick Payne, Tyrion’s squire.

In other Game of Thrones casting news, Patrick Malahide (Law & Order UK, Quills) cast as Balon Greyjoy. The Lord of the Iron Islands is father to Theon, currently a ward of the Starks in Season 1.

Ian Hanmore (Outlaws, The Deal) will play Pyat Pree, a Qartheen warlock. The city of Qarth is located in the Eastern continent, also called Essos.

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30 day song challenge, day 13

30 day song challenge, day 13
A song that is a guilty pleasure
Don Spencer, Bob the Kelpie

I love this song! :) I also love sheepie dogs.

So it’s been about a month since my last song challenge post, but who’s counting…

Cross-posted from facebook, where this and other 30-day challenge memes have been unleashed.

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GoT Casting Round 3

HBO is becoming a bit more coy with their casting information for Game of Thrones. They’re making fans do a lot of the leaking at the moment.

Oona Chaplin (Inconceivable, Married Single Other) has been confirmed as Jeyne. But Jeyne is a very popular name in Westeros and we have two major characters: Jeyne Pool, the daughter of Winterfell’s steward and Sansa’s companion, and Jeyne Westerling, a girl that… well, that would be a spoiler. HBO isn’t telling us which one, or if she’s neither.

And what about locations? Croatia has finally been officially confirmed, but there has been plenty of chatter from WiC net which secured it as a filming spot for Season 2 for the past few weeks. HBO’s press release took no-one by surprise.

Something that may surprise A Song of Ice and Fire fans is the casting of another small role. Forbes KB (A Day of Violence) will play Ironborn reaver Black Lorren. Aren’t they afraid Lorren sounds too much like Yoren? Either way, there are a lot of other characters we are waiting to see cast! *cough* Podrick *cough*

And also in more furtively announced news, accomplished stage actress Laura Pradelska hath tweeted that she will be playing Quaithe of the Shadow, priestess of Asshai.

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Peter Dinklage also Narrates in The Wordy Shipmates

I know you’ve probably been wondering the same thing that I have. “That Peter Dinklage has a fine voice, why doesn’t he do more voice acting?” Well it turns out that he’s done a bit of voice over work, thank you very much!

Peter Dinklage has narrated at least two documentaries, a miniseries titled The Real Family of Jesus and Freedom Machines from POV, a PBS documentary series. We announced a few weeks back that he also voices one of the stories in The Bippolo Seed, a collection of “lost” tales from Dr. Seuss.

Finding voice actor credits for book narration is rather difficult, as not all narrators are listed on the audiobook. I’ve compiled a pretty solid list of his works, so when I stumbled upon a reference to Peter Dinklage narrating in The Wordy Shipmates by author Sarah Vowell, I was skeptical. But it’s legit! He reads the part of Roger Williams, an English-born Puritan with heretical notions of freedom of religion and the separation of church and state. He also was one of the founders of Rhode Island; he helped buy the island from a local tribe.

The book has gotten pretty good reviews, but I did gather that although it has a historical bent, it’s got many of the author’s personal anecdotes and memoirs from the present sprinkled throughout the novel. Some people complained about her speaking voice being nasally or whiny, but I don’t find it a problem. I might change my mind after 7 hours though.

Take a listen and see what you think!

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Game of Thrones gets Stiffed in the Portal Awards?

The results of the 2011 Portal Awards were announced on Thursday, with some good news and some bad news for Game of Thrones Fans.

The TV show Fringe managed to upset some of GoT’s sure-wins. Fringeophiles voted it in for Best TV Actress (Anna Torv) and Best TV Supporting Actor. Peter Dinklage should have received the Supporting Actor award, but it went to Fringe star John Noble, possibly as a direct result of him being snubbed for an Emmy nomination. Fringe also received Best Special Guest because they pulled out The Nimoy. I totally give them that. They also got Christopher Lloyd for another episode, so – props!

I really can’t believe Peter Dinklage didn’t win. :(

It wasn’t a complete sweep for Fringe, since Game of Thrones got Best Actor (Sean Bean), Best Episode (Winter is Coming) and Best Series. So in a numbers game, it comes out even.

I have a few more nits with the Porties.

Daniel Radcliffe won Best Young Actor and he’s like 30 22. I understand JJ Abrams is responsible for Fringe, but I’ve also seen Lost and Super 8. Elisabeth Sladen (Doctor Who) really should have gotten the Gene Roddenberry Award because 1) she’s been around longer and 2) she’s dead now. I also feel that Helena Bonham Carter (HP Deathly Hallows, Sweeney Todd) should have gotten an honorable mention or something.

And really, when it comes down to best website, i09 beats the pants off of GateWorld. I’m sorry, that’s just how it is.

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More Casting Updates for GoT!

More casting news for Season 2 of Game of Thrones!

When we last left off, we were wondering who would be dropped and who would make the final cut in casting for S2. Have no fear, fans of Dolorous Edd Tolett! We have news that British actor Ben Crompton (Ideal, Kill List) has been cast as the Night’s Watch squire. Check out Ben Crompton’s mug on IMDB and I’m sure you’ll agree that he looks the part of our dour Brother.

Speaking of the Watch, another wildling has been cast. Behold, the odious master of Craster’s Keep beyond the Wall will be played by Welsh actor Robert Pugh (Robin Hood, Master & Commander). I guess he looks pretty much like Craster, minus beard and general putrescence.

In even more northerly news, we have another casting! The role of Lord of the Dreadfort, Roose Bolton, (whose banner is the Flayed Man, yuck!) will be portrayed by Irish actor Michael McElhatton (Your Bad Self, Perrier’s Bounty), who has the perfect skeletal look to him.

More to come as casting news breaks!

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Game of Thrones Casting for Season 2

Lots and lots of casting news for season 2 of HBO’s Game of Thrones! They’ve been setting up and filming, but news has trickled out here and there about our newest Thronesians.

Ladies first, so let’s introduce the actresses cast for S2.

Brienne, the stalwart Maid of Tarth, will be played by Gwendoline Christie (The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus). Melisandre, the Red Priestess of R’hllor, will be portrayed by Carice van Houten (Valkyrie, Repo Men). Natalie Dormer (The Tudors) will play Margaery Tyrell, the sister of Ser Loras Tyrell, the Knight of Flowers. The character of Asha Greyjoy, sister to Theon, has been renamed to “Yara” for Game of Thrones to avoid confusion with the character Osha the wildling woman. Her role will be played by Gemma Whelan (Gulliver’s Travels, The Wolfman). Confirmed today, the role of Gilly, Craster’s daughter and another wildling girl, has been given to Hannah Murray (Skins, Chatroom).

Now for the menfolk, and there are several roles cast!

Stephen Dillane (King Arthur, Spy Game) has been appointed as Stannis, the middle child of the brothers Baratheon. His loyal Onion Knight and former smuggler, Lord Davos Seaworth, will be played by Liam Cunningham (Camelot, Clash of the Titans). Playing his son Matthos Seaworth is Irish actor Kerr Logan (The Isis). Further, the role of Dragonstone’s own Maester Cressen is to be filled by Oliver Ford Davies (Star Wars Episodes I-III, Walking Dead).

Some characters from Essos have also been cast! The role of Faceless Man Jaqen H’ghar goes to German actor Tom Wlaschiha (Valkyrie, Munich). And playing Xaro Xhoan Daxos, the Qarth merchant-prince, is Nonso Anozie (Conan the Barbarian, Cass).

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