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Actors, Actors Everywhere

The big HBO fact sheet, seen below, announced a whole bunch of new castings. Too many for me to discuss all at once, unless I wanted to devote the whole day to it. Which I don't. I have a big monkey to wrestle.

Let me say a few words about a few, however. (I'll get to the others in good time).

In the part of Marillion the singer (who is NOT named after the band), we have EMUN ELLIOTT, a young Scottish actor who has recently appeared in BLACK DEATH with Sean Bean.

He could almost pass for a member of the Night's Watch in that gear, I think. His other credits include MONARCH OF THE GLEN and an SF crime drama called PARADOX.


He did not actually play the lute in his auditions, so I can't say whether he will be singing his own songs when that time comes.

As Maester Aemon, we have PETER VAUGHAN, another truly amazing British character actor with a resume that stretches back to 1954 and includes appearances in such classic films as THE 39 STEPS, VILLAGE OF THE DAMNED, TIME BANDITS, THE FRENCH LIEUTENANT'S WOMAN, and many many more. He's worked with Alfred Hitchcock and Walt Disney, and his TV credits include everything from THE SAINT to THE PALLISERS to WAR AND REMEMBRANCE. He's going to be a sensational Maester Aemon.


Equally distintinguished is the resume of the actress who will play Old Nan, one of Aemon's rivals for the title is oldest living resident of the Seven Kingdoms (Walder Frey is up there too, but he hasn't been cast yet). Her name is MARGARET JOHN.


Born and raised in Wales, Margaret John has been acting professionally since 1960. British audiences known her best for her recurring role as Doris in the television series GAVIN & STACY. SF fans may remember her from her appearances on DOCTOR WHO and BLAKE'S 7. But her credits go on and on forever, and her Old Nan was a delight.

As for my latest round of clues... yes, you solved this one too. Give yourselves a pat on the head. You guys are impossible to fool for long.

So let me confirm. The part of OSHA will be played by NATALIA TENA.


"Arthur and Morgana are familiar with this wildling wench," I said. The wildling wench is Osha, of course. Natalia appeared with Jamie Campbell Bower in HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS and with Eva Green in WOMB. JBC will play Arthur and Eva Green will be Morgana in the new Starz series CAMELOT.

"In the books she has not met Theon's sister (yet). Real life? Well... " Osha has not encountered Asha in the novels, no. But Natalia went to school with singer Lily Allen, the sister of Alfie Allen, who will play Theon in the series.

"Actress and character both made a splash," I wrote. The scene used in the audition was the godswood scene where Bran comes on Osha bathing in the pool beneath the weirwood. And Natalie took a celebrated skinny dip during a music festival a year ago, as reported in the British press.

Fantasy fans will know Tena best for her portrayal of the purple-haired Nymphadora Tonks in the Harry Potter films. When I saw that she was reading for Osha, my first thought was, "She's great, but no way, she's too young and too hot." Then I saw her reading, and none of the other Oshas had a chance. Her charisma grabbed me by the throat and I could not take my eyes off her. David and Dan felt the same way. We're all thrilled to have her.

So that's four. Discuss amongst yourselves. My monkey is waiting.


( 47 comments — Leave a comment )
Jul. 17th, 2010 07:57 pm (UTC)
Very cool to get Tena confirmed. The good Rabbit guessed that one.

I also have to say, learning earlier today that William FRACKIN Hobbs is helping Miltos Yerolemou get ready for his role as Syrio was kind of ... uh, jaw-dropping. He's a living legend. Rob Roy, Robin and Marian, The Duellists, Lester's Musketeers films, Dangerous Liasons... A ridiculous list of credits.

I wonder if he'll be choreographing any of the fights in the first season, or if he's just helping Miltos polish up his stage combat craft?
Jul. 17th, 2010 08:09 pm (UTC)
Peter Vaughan is such a brilliant actor. I am so glad you got him.
Jul. 17th, 2010 08:24 pm (UTC)

(others as well, of course. I know Vaughan - he's a terrific actor)
Jul. 17th, 2010 08:25 pm (UTC)
Question: So you've cast a number of Valemen; Lysa, Robin, Ser Hugh, Ser Vardis, etc. Conspicuously absent from this list is the Blackfish. Is he being shunted to next season?
Jul. 21st, 2010 12:57 pm (UTC)
good question
Jul. 17th, 2010 08:33 pm (UTC)
Maester Aemon was always Peter O'Toole in my head, ha. Oh well. :(

And yeah, I had the same feeling about that actress for Osha - too young and too hot! But okay, I'll trust you!
Jul. 17th, 2010 09:05 pm (UTC)
I thought the actress playing Osha looked familiar... it's no wonder I didn't really recognize her from the HP movies; her character was hardly in them. *duck*

I have to say, though, while I'm unfamiliar with most of the actors and actresses being cast, with every single one of them I've looked at their pictures and realized that, yes, I can definitely see them as the character they're playing. Especially with the recent castings of Littlefinger and Varys. @_@ There's a weird kind of dissonance that comes with seeing a character you know and love played by someone who looks nothing like how you pictured them; it's good to know that won't be happening with this series. Can't wait.
Jul. 17th, 2010 09:11 pm (UTC)
Natalia grabbed my attention in the Harry Potter movies, even with just a few very brief scenes. She has great expressiveness. I think she'll be dynamite.
Jul. 17th, 2010 09:16 pm (UTC)
Tonks? We got Tonks! That is awesome. I am so infatuated with Tonks in the Harry Potter movies (even the books). She gets nowhere near enough screen time. Hopefully her role in GoT will change that. :)
Jul. 17th, 2010 09:37 pm (UTC)
Big fan of Nat Tena's here -- as I mentioned in my other comment in the other post, she's amazing in About a boy and Mrs Henderson Presents and she's got a good rep as a stage actress in the UK. Horribly underused in the Potter films though. She's also a bit of a mad woman in public appearances so not surprised that she blew everyone away as Osha. Woo hoo!

And Peter f'ing Vaughn as Maester Aemon?!! My fave role of his is probably in Brazil but he's brilliant in everything. Can't wait to see him!
Jul. 17th, 2010 10:46 pm (UTC)
Anyone who thinks that Natalia Tena would make a bad Osha (for whatever reason) should watch About a Boy. She's eve YOUNGER in that and pretty much plays the exact same character (only with cleaner clothes and a nose ring.)(And less tendency to murder people)And she was great in that.
Jul. 18th, 2010 12:52 am (UTC)
If anyone is interested in seeing Peter Vaughan in a hilarious, but VERY un-Aemon-like, roll, check out the original British "Death at a Funeral". It's got our Tyrion in it, as well.
Jul. 18th, 2010 01:21 am (UTC)
I love reading your thoughts on the casting as it progresses. It's wonderful to see how incredibly excited you are and how invested you remain in the project. You're an inspiration in every way.
Jul. 18th, 2010 03:46 am (UTC)
Your Monkey
Keep at that monkey ;-) Gotta say, even with all this amazing casting news, seeing Kong conquered will top it all!! You are the best! Rock on!
Jul. 18th, 2010 06:33 am (UTC)
Re: Your Monkey
I have to agree. Even the mild mention of the monkey gets me excited. Dance updates perk my ears (eyes?) up instantly
Jul. 18th, 2010 04:30 am (UTC)

Good choices!
(ZOMG Tena will make a good Osha!)
Jul. 18th, 2010 04:48 am (UTC)
TONKS!!! That makes me unbelievably happy.

I need to order HBO soon.
Jul. 18th, 2010 07:37 am (UTC)
I'm also very excited to see Mr. Martin's monkey....wait...we are talking about A Dance with Dragons here, right....?
Jul. 18th, 2010 09:02 am (UTC)
Game of thrones computer game
Nice to hear that more parts are filled

I just wanted to make people aware of the announcement of the game of throne computer game. Game of thrones: Genesis

and I did not know where else to post it :)

I rather would have seen a Role playing game but strategy could work also :)
Jul. 18th, 2010 09:30 am (UTC)
Is that first photo an actual still from the series? 'Cause if so, WOW!
Jul. 18th, 2010 05:25 pm (UTC)
It's a still from BLACK DEATH.

Like I said.

Immediately above said photo.
Jul. 18th, 2010 06:46 pm (UTC)
You never said the still was from Black Death, only that Emun was in the movie :p

I probably should've drawn that conclusion myself though. Wishful thinking on my part!
Jul. 18th, 2010 10:52 am (UTC)
I've never commented on GRRM's LiveJournal before, but having re-read the series recently I just felt like chiming in. All the casting choices seem pretty damn spot-on, though I'm not sure I can picture the scowly Old Guy from Braveheart as Jeor Mormont.

So where's Lord Beric and Thoros? They do appear in AGOT for one scene, when Ned sends them to kill the Mountain.
Jul. 18th, 2010 05:23 pm (UTC)
you are luckier with a monkey on your shoulder.what if it were a donkey?
Jul. 18th, 2010 05:31 pm (UTC)
Then she's already got some experience, let's see how she can do with a spear. I seem to remember her sticking it to Theon's man at some point.

This message contains multiple puns.
Jul. 18th, 2010 07:45 pm (UTC)
Peter Vaughan
Anyone else noticed that Peter Vaughan is 87 years old? Although quite fitting for the role of ancient Maester Aemon who himself was still alive and kicking at the age of 102 (I think), it seems like a gamble to enlist Vaughan in a show that'll need him for the next 4 years or so (no disrespect intended).

Reminds me of a nice anecdote about an elderly women sitting in her front yard and telling people: "I'm 97 years old and finally life gets easier now that my daughter is in the nursing home." :D
Jul. 19th, 2010 06:14 am (UTC)
Composer for the HBO series
I have a quick question for George -
Is there any way to put forth suggestions for potential composers for the series, similar to how casting suggestions for David & Dan can be made over on the Westeros forums?
I'm not sure at what point they'll start seriously thinking about scoring the series, but I'd be very interested in tossing a few names their way if at all possible.
Jul. 19th, 2010 05:59 pm (UTC)
Re: Composer for the HBO series
We have several composers in mind. In fact, the leading contenders have already been interviewed, and it's just a matter of making the final choice. (I have my own favorite).

Bottom line, it's probably too late to be tossing any new names into the hat. The composer will be one of those we've already interviwed.
Jul. 19th, 2010 06:11 pm (UTC)
Re: Composer for the HBO series
There's this German kid named Richard Wagner who would be perfect for the HBO series. I kid, but that sort of depth and passion and awe is what you need for this epic.
Jul. 19th, 2010 07:20 pm (UTC)
Re: Composer for the HBO series
Well in any case, I hope that you all employ some of Austin-based metal band The Sword's awesome GoT themed songs (from their album Gods of the Earth) somewhere in the project. Maybe Arya could be listening to it on her iPod or whatever. ;) To Take the Black is particularly badass.
Jul. 19th, 2010 07:57 pm (UTC)
Re: Composer for the HBO series
A related question:

Will Corvus Corax still be appearing in the Winterfell banquet scene? Obviously there will need to be major reshoots, and it seems like this sequence will need either partial or total reshoots because of the loss of Jennifer Ehle (unless they can shoot around that, somehow). So, is Corvus Corax still available, if that's the case? They seemed like an inspired choice for the scene, once I became familiar with their music.
Jul. 19th, 2010 10:13 pm (UTC)
Re: Composer for the HBO series
And here I thought it might be too early to be thinking about the score ;)
Thanks for the info!
Jul. 19th, 2010 07:15 pm (UTC)
HBO and Kong
First of all, let me just say that i am VERY VERY excited about all the castings and developments taking shape for the HBO series GOT i cant wait for episode 1 of 10.

I have a question about KONG though, i'm sure it must have been answered in another posting at some point, but in case i missed it here's hoping i can still get the answer :)

Will A Dance with Dragons be available in Kindle edition immediately upon release? or will it come after?

G.R.R.M Master KONG SLAYER keep up the insanely fantastic & amazing work we all love and appreciate.


Jul. 20th, 2010 02:07 am (UTC)
Songs and prayers
Question concerning the show:

While you can leave most songs and prayers unsung in the books, won't the show require fuller versions (even just in the background)? If so, would you take on that task yourself in order to ensure continuity with possible future verses of staples like "Rains" and "the Bear," as well as some of the main prayers or hymns? Or would you leave it to the show's writers?

Sorry if you've answered this elsewhere.
- Vic
Jul. 20th, 2010 02:28 am (UTC)
it's been speculated that ian mcneice (sp?) is the one who could possibly be recast because of scheduling conflicts and i just want to say that if this is the case, i'd like to echo what seems to be the consensus in saying that i hope VERY MUCH that he is able to work with the producers to figure something out. he looks perfect for the part and i adored him in rome.
Jul. 20th, 2010 06:49 am (UTC)
Go wrestling monkey!


No, I mean go GRRM! Down, monkey, down.
Jul. 20th, 2010 10:13 am (UTC)
greatest cast ever!!
Jul. 20th, 2010 01:21 pm (UTC)
Any chance of getting your thoughts on Jerome Flynn's audition? Amongst British fans, he's been possibly the most surprising casting decision of the entire project, due to him leaving acting a decade and a half ago to pursue a singing career (managed by Simon Cowell), although he's been on stage since. Interesting to see him making a TV comeback on THRONES.
Jul. 20th, 2010 06:01 pm (UTC)
When were you going to tell us about the PC Strategy Title: A Game of Thrones: Genesis for the PC????? The conceptual art looks amazing. And


Trackmania publisher Focus Home Interactive bills the game as a mix of military, strategy, and politics where "victory does not necessarily result from brute force."
Jul. 20th, 2010 08:44 pm (UTC)
I'm amazed at how deep the casting goes. I was afraid that HBO would skimp on characters, but if Old Nan is going to be in it, then they're going to be faithful to the books.

Who's next, the headless woman in the fountain before the Hand's Tourney? :)
Jul. 20th, 2010 09:51 pm (UTC)
This series keeps sounding (and looking) better and better as actors are announced. Ms. Tena looks more like what I pictured for Shae, though...
Jul. 21st, 2010 05:55 am (UTC)
this is getting serious :) it looks now so real that it seems somehow unreal, I am soooo looking forward to see all these people in my favourite characters' skins!
Jul. 21st, 2010 11:58 am (UTC)
Belfast Local
Thanks George for the casting update, a great list of actors coming along to help give this production the extra bang for its buck!

Im a local Song of Fire and Ice fan and can confirm all the talk about Belfast is GOT and becoming part of history, its great that its finally arrived!

If you've any sway in helping get local fans a small part, it would be amazing! :)
Jul. 21st, 2010 04:40 pm (UTC)
Re: Belfast Local
A speaking part? No way, alas. But they have been calling for extras repeatedly, and I expect will continue to need them.

You will need to grow that beard out, though. And your hair is way too short.

Unless you're an amputee. I heard they were looking for amputees.
Jul. 21st, 2010 10:40 pm (UTC)
Belfast Local
Thanks George for the feedback,

i'll continue to rock the beard out and hope with my receeding hair line, my longer hair look doesnt scare people!! :)

ive joined the main local extras company so heres hoping if they fire a helmet on me, stick me on a horse i can be a Gold Cloak or Lannister guard!

thanks again for the reply, take it easy...and hope to see you in Belfast soon and i'll get you a pint of the black stuff in some fine locals i frequent!!
Jul. 22nd, 2010 08:27 am (UTC)
HBO series
I was just wondering, how close to the book will this series be? Obviously I hope it follows it as close as humanly possible, but I realize this can sometimes be hard. Just wondering what we can expect along those lines.
Jul. 26th, 2010 09:18 pm (UTC)
So stoked to see Tena joining the cast! I LOVE her!
( 47 comments — Leave a comment )


George R.R. Martin
George R. R. Martin

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