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The Maid of Tarth

I see you guys are just as sharp as ever. The long layoff between first and second season casting hasn't made you rusty. Once again, you nailed my obscure hints within minutes.

Well, okay, I did fool a few of you. For a couple minutes, anyway. But others correctly puzzled out the casting. The part of Brienne, Maid of Tarth, will be played by British actress GWENDOLINE CHRISTIE.

This was another one of those cases where there was hardly any debate. The day the first batch of auditions went up for the role, we looked at a dozen actresses who were reading for Brienne and one actress who WAS Brienne. Gwendoline gave a great reading, and her look was just perfect. No, when she auditioned, she did not look she does in the photo above. She came in looking... well, like Brienne.

As for my clues... Christie played in a music video called DAMARIS, which includes a song about Isabelle, the She-Wolf of France (wife of King Edward II, for the history nerds out there), and played in Shakespeare's CYMBELINE at the Barbican theatre. She also posed for Australian photographed Polly Borland for a show called "Bunny."

She also appears in the recent IMAGINARIUM OF DOCTOR PARNASSAS, though I did not use that one in my clues.

Gwendoline will be a great Brienne. It's a thrill to have her join the cast.

Congratulations to everyone who figured it out... and for those who guessed wrong, well, better luck next time.


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Jul. 8th, 2011 10:31 am (UTC)
As a diehard Brienne fan I'm VERY pleased with this casting. Thanks for the good news George! ♥
Jul. 8th, 2011 10:38 am (UTC)
She better put on some weight, muscles and plastic makeup (broken nose, crooked teeth, lower brow, swollen lips), she looks way too good for Brienne now.
Seriously, don't screw this up, it makes no sense if she actually is a "Beauty", or even decent looking.
Jul. 8th, 2011 11:13 am (UTC)
Well the casting for season 1 was excellent and it seems to me as if season 2 will continue in that regard...
Jul. 8th, 2011 11:24 am (UTC)
I'll take your word she looked the part, because that girl looks gorgeous. And it's a pet peeve of mine when tv and movies pretend a girl is "plain" or "ugly" and in fact she's really good looking and they just straighten her hair or stick glasses on her or something. :P

But I trust your judgement, George.

Did you announce the girl slated to play Margaery? I missed it on your own blog but I saw she had announced it on her own. Alas, I can't dig up the link now,but she as on the Tudors, right?
Jul. 8th, 2011 12:34 pm (UTC)
Natalie Dormer played Anne Boleyn in The Tudors.
(no subject) - Narco_Sleepy - Jul. 8th, 2011 01:25 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - eagle55555 - Jul. 8th, 2011 01:32 pm (UTC) - Expand
^ THIS - Frank Bartlett - Jul. 8th, 2011 01:48 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - wow_hazmat - Jul. 8th, 2011 02:05 pm (UTC) - Expand
SO agree. - Erin Mayhugh - Jul. 8th, 2011 02:19 pm (UTC) - Expand
Jul. 8th, 2011 12:09 pm (UTC)
Oh, she is perfect! All of the casting choices, all of the sets - EVERYTHING - has looked exactly as I imagined, or close enough to make no difference.
Jul. 8th, 2011 01:03 pm (UTC)
Wow, she is so tall!
Jul. 8th, 2011 01:30 pm (UTC)
I'm unspeakably happy
Love Gwendoline, thrilled she got the part. Here's yet another fan-casting that came true! I'm also glad to see the casting clues come back--for any character. Heck, at this point I would have been happy with a casting clue for Eurythredes Wayn.

Now, as for Gemma Whalen as "Yara" Greyjoy and Kerr Logan as "Matthos"...can you confirm either of those, and whether or not it's Matthos Seaworth he'll be playing, and is this Asha renamed?

Also still wanna know who played Timmett, Chella, Biter and Rorge.
Jul. 8th, 2011 01:47 pm (UTC)
She looks just right! Awesome :D
Jul. 8th, 2011 01:47 pm (UTC)
I'm not too worried about the "uglying" of her, but the height was something I was concerned about. Oh boy does is she tall. Awesome :D
Jul. 8th, 2011 01:50 pm (UTC)
Brienne's a babe????
Sorry, but I see this as a Hollywood cop out. Sure, she's tall--but hardly "beauty challenged" in the way that Brienne struggled with all her life!
Jul. 8th, 2011 08:27 pm (UTC)
Re: Brienne's a babe????
I mean, you also have to take into account height and acting ability, so it's not like they could only focus on finding a horsey, mannish person to the exclusion of everything else...
Jul. 8th, 2011 02:04 pm (UTC)
I'm glad you said she came in looking like Brienne and I'm relying on your judgement, because...tall? Check. Beautiful eyes? Check. But ugly? No check. She's gorgeous. Not even plain, gorgeous. She'll never be horsefaced, not with that tiny chin, but I'm really hoping the makeup artists can pull off the rest and really make her for-real ugly, not just Hollywood ugly, which is still 1,000 times prettier than I was on my best teenage/20-something day. I don't suppose the Powers That Be would let you post a screencap from her audition?

PS - Brienne is one of my favorite characters. Possibly I'm somewhat over-invested here.
Jul. 8th, 2011 07:40 pm (UTC)
She looks less glamorous in other shots, like these:



By no means ugly, of course (I think she's sort of adorable), but not totally gorgeous, either. I can see how she'd pull it off.

(Also an over-invested Brienne fan. :D)
(no subject) - nutmeg3 - Jul. 9th, 2011 01:04 am (UTC) - Expand
Jul. 8th, 2011 02:07 pm (UTC)
I was a little worried about how this character would look compared to how I saw Brienne in my head. I can see this particular woman becoming very Brienne-like with a few cosmetic changes.
Jul. 8th, 2011 02:33 pm (UTC)
OK, I trust you...but I am still having reservations.
Jul. 8th, 2011 02:34 pm (UTC)
The fair maid of Tarth
For me its the perfect pick, she looks very tall. though she might not be as photoshop perfect as some other actresses out there, she has a certain allure and beauty of her own, a strong woman...just as i had imagined Brienne. Perfect or should i say HODOR !
Ilea Ulery
Jul. 8th, 2011 02:37 pm (UTC)
The Renaming of Asha Greyjoy
George, I beg of you, please do not let anyone change her name! Change Osha's name instead. We haven't even heard her name yet on the show, and Asha is such a great name that it would make me sad to see it go. :(
Jose R. Perez
Jul. 8th, 2011 02:43 pm (UTC)
They gonna have to make her look uglier!
Jul. 8th, 2011 02:47 pm (UTC)
This is gonna be AWESOME! I'm in my re-read of A Storm of Swords right now to prep for A Dance with Dragons. I just got to part where Jaime turns his group around to rescue Brienne from the bear pit. I know that won't be until Season 3 of the HBO show but MAN I can't wait to get there!

I'm really looking forward to the casting news of the Bloody Mummers too! Vargo is my favorite man to hate! ^_^
Jul. 8th, 2011 02:47 pm (UTC)
book available in UK
Hello Mr Martin

First post and not sure where to put it. Sad to say that waterstones.com, the online version of that bookstore, shipped ADwD yesterday and broke the embargo in the UK. It has arrived today. Hope heads roll...
Jul. 8th, 2011 04:21 pm (UTC)
Re: book available in UK
I just got an email today from Play.com saying my copy has been shipped. It probably won't reach me until the day before the release date at earliest, by still.
Jul. 8th, 2011 02:52 pm (UTC)
I LOVE how this show feels like a co-production between the fans and the creators. I'm sure she wouldn't have been cast if she hadn't been on everyone's mind as Brienne since... forever. :))
Patrick Zingaro
Jul. 8th, 2011 02:53 pm (UTC)
Maid of Tarth
Very excited about season 2, thought season 1 was very enjoyable. It's a great pleasure seeing my favorite books come to life in a way that even my friends who have not (as yet) read the books.

This actress is quite a bit prettier than I thought Brienne to be, but of couse with costume and makeup...

Looking forward to book five!
Megan Johnson
Jul. 8th, 2011 02:58 pm (UTC)
She looks perfect! Can't wait for the next season. :D
Jul. 8th, 2011 03:25 pm (UTC)
Yet another great addition to the Game of Thrones cast. I can't wait for the next season. Well done, ser!
Jul. 8th, 2011 03:41 pm (UTC)
Vey nice
I like how the shows are introducing some new actors as well as some veterans, I would like to see mads mikkelsen cast in the show,he was great in Valhalla Rising,Clash of the Titans, and has starred with Nik Waldau in Vildspor.I wish I could send a raven to the casting director with my suggestion.
Jul. 8th, 2011 03:51 pm (UTC)
as perfect as the real world allows
It's like casting for Jaime and Cersei. No one on earth is going to live up the physical attractiveness they are described as having (well, there might be a few, but I doubt they can act). It works on the other scale as well. Good luck finding an ugly, masculine woman who can act. Our real world gets as close as Gwendoline Christie. She is not ugly but not "conventionally" pretty either. She is tall, but does not have the same build. I personally don't care.

What I do like though (from what I can tell from pictures) she has no issues with nudity, so a certain bathing scene in Harrenhal(If I remember correctly) should by very immodest.
Billy Wilde
Jul. 8th, 2011 04:20 pm (UTC)
The'th DEFINITELY worth a bag of thapphireth!
Jul. 8th, 2011 10:47 pm (UTC)
Re: Wow!
hahahahah! awesome
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George R.R. Martin
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