Game of Thrones has announced their final season will be coming to our televisions and illegally downloaded computer screens in April 2019, and we couldn’t contain our excitement. In honor of the final season, we decided to take a look back and collect some of the best Game of Thrones facts, scandals, and secrets we could find.
We’d warn you that there will be spoilers, but the show has been off the air for two years so you’ve had plenty of time to catch up.
Khaleesi And Khal Drogo Hit It Off
The first time Emilia Clarke a.k.a. Daenerys Stormborn of the House Targaryen, First of Her Name, the Mother of Dragons etc. etc. etc., met her on-screen husband Jason Momoa, he screamed “WIFEY!” and rugby tackled her.
They must have been getting in character for the early stage of their unbalanced relationship.
Sansa Adopted Her Direwolf
Sophie Turner’s direwolf saw an untimely end in season one. Despite the short time together, Sophie grew so attached to her pup Zunni that she decided to adopt her.
It took a little convincing of her mom since Sophie was still a young teenager at the time but who could say no to that face?
Peter Dinklage Has The Most Screentime
Game of Thrones fans know that you don’t always see your favorite character in every episode. There are so many different storylines going on.
Dinklage’s character has appeared in 61 out of the 67 episodes in the series. That’s probably because his character has moved from his own storylines into other people’s storylines so easily.
Joaquin Phoenix Inspired Jack Gleeson’s Character
Gleeson, who played the notoriously sadistic King Joffrey, was loved (and hated) by fans for just how well he played the character. Gleeson said that he took inspiration from Phoenix’s character Emperor Commodus in the film Gladiator.
In fact, he said he spent hours trying to perfect the Commodus smirk.
Charles Dance Kept Apologizing To Dinklage
The actors didn’t always agree with what their characters did. Dance, who played Lord Tywin Lannister, was so appalled with how the character spoke to and treated his son Tyrion.
Dance hated it so much that he would keep apologizing for being cruel to Peter Dinklage between takes. We forgive you!
They Found Love In A Wildling Place
Kit Harrington and Rose Leslie, who played Jon Snow and Ygritte, had a steamy on-screen romance that budded into an off-screen romance.
The two started dating not long after Leslie’s character was killed off the show. The two tied the knot on June 23, 2018, in Scotland with the Game of Thrones cast in attendance.
Lena Headey Can Thank Dinklage For Landing The Part
Although their characters Cersei and Tyrion don’t get along, Healey and Dinklage are really good friends in real life. So much so that when the show’s producers were looking for someone to cast as Cersei, Dinklage highly recommended Headey.
The two even share an apartment when their filming schedules line up.
On The Other Hand, Headey Hates One Cast Member
Headey might be friendly with Dinklage, but she holds a serious grudge against Jerome Flynn. Flynn, who plays Bronn, once dated Headey and the relationship ended badly.
So badly that the two have clauses in their contracts that they will never have to share a scene or have to work on the same set.
One Actor Has Played More Than One Role
Rather than have a character re-cast, Game of Thrones re-cast an actor in a different role. Dean-Charles Chapman was hired to play the minor role of Martyn Lannister in season three.
The producers were so impressed with the young actor that they had him return in a more significant role, as King Tommen Baratheon.
Gwendoline Christie Trained For Months For Her Epic Fight
While both Christie, who played Brienne of Tarth, and her costar who played The Hound had stunt doubles for the fight, they did a lot of the work themselves.
Christie said it was the most grueling scene she’s ever filmed despite training for it for four days a week for two months.
Obama Knew The Plot Spoilers
Every fan around the world was wondering the fate of Jon Snow after the season five finale. The cast and crew were sworn to secrecy, but apparently, that doesn’t apply to the President of the United States.
President Obama is a huge GoT fan and he specifically reached out to the directors to find out his fate. Obama got to watch the first episode of season six before anyone else.
Breaking Records And Breaking The Bank
You might have guessed that Game of Thrones has quite a large production budget, but you’ll never believe the real numbers.
The first season broke records by costing $60 million and it’s only gone up. The sixth season cost more than $100 million to produce, which equals out to around $10 million an episode.
George R. R. Martin Likes Characters Better On TV Than In The Books
You’d think the author of the Game of Thrones series would be totally committed to his own writing, but Martin admits that the show improved some of his characters.
Particularly, he thought Natalia Tena as Osha and Sibel Kekilli as Shae was “even better than his” versions. You go girls!
Gandalf’s Sword Made It Into The Iron Throne
Eagle-eyed fans spotted this Easter Egg for us. They noticed that one of the swords used in the Iron Throne is just like Gandalf’s sword Glamdring from Lord of the Rings.
It was just an accidental reuse of a sword mold the set designer had on hand, but it’s also a nice nod to Sean Bean who also played Boromir in LotR.
George R.R. Martin Wanted The Series To Be Unfilmable
Martin was inspired to write the complex novel “A Song of Ice and Fire” after seeing his other stories be butchered as films. He wanted a series so complex that they wouldn’t be able to make a film out of it.
Producers approached Martin numerous times to try and create a film out of one specific storyline, but Martin refused because too much information crossed between the storylines.
The Queen Missed An Opportunity To Rule The Seven Kingdoms
In 2014, Queen Elizabeth II visited the Game of Thrones set and was offered a chance to take her photo sitting on the Iron Throne. Anyone else would have immediately said yes, but Liz politely declined.
The rules of the monarchy say that you can’t sit on a foreign throne, even if it is fictional.
Kit Harington Might Have An Even More Famous Ancestor
Kit has claimed that one of his long lost ancestors is John Harington. John was a figure in Queen Elizabeth I’s court and is also widely accepted as the inventor of the flush toilet.
Kit says that is why we sometimes call the toilet “The John.” Kit is basically British royalty.
George R.R. Martin Sold The Show With A Trivia Question
When producers David Benioff and D.B. Weiss approached Martin to turn GoT into a television show, he agreed to it on the condition they answer one question.
Martin said if they could guess who Jon Snow’s mother is, then they could make the show. The two got the answer right, so they got to make the show.
Masie Williams Adds Fans To Her List
Williams’ character Arya is primarily obsessed with getting revenge on an ever-growing list of characters. Williams says that when she meets fans, they often ask her to recite the list and add their names in.
She has no problem doing it, but you’d better hope she doesn’t actually end up enacting her gruesome revenge on any fan.
They Originally Wanted A Different Theme Song
When Benioff was producing the first season, he really wanted “The Rains of Casatamere” to be the series theme song. Weiss convinced him out of it thankfully.
As we all know, the song is reserved for being played only in the most important (and tragic) moments in the show.
There Are Four Locations Always Shown In The Title Sequence
Granted, the title sequence is always pretty long, but for a good reason. It shows every location that will be featured in that episode. Even if they aren’t featured though, four locations are always in the sequence.
King’s Landing, Winterfell, the Wall, and wherever Daenerys is (because it changes so much). The most a sequence has shown is six locations.
There’s An Unaired Pilot
The original pilot for the series was a complete bomb. It had to be shelved and completely redone. Benioff told Variety that they “got everything wrong on a very basic level.”
How did they know it was so bad? The people who watched the pilot couldn’t figure out that Jaime and Cersei were siblings. Yikes.
Dothraki Is A Real Language
Since Game of Thrones doesn’t cheap out on anything, they had respected linguist David J. Peterson come in to build the Dothraki language you hear on the show.
Peterson was so detailed with his work that it is now an actual language you can learn, similar to the Elvish language from Lord of the Rings.
Emilia Clarke Had A Hard Time Eating The Horse Heart
Clarke struggled to get through the iconic scene where Daenerys eats a horse heart. Of course, she didn’t eat an actual horse heart. It was just a large gummy candy that apparently tasted a little bit like bleach.
To make matters worse, the fake blood got her so sticky that she got stuck to a toilet. It sounds like an overall terrible experience.
There’s A Fun Nod To Monty Python In Season Three
In the episode “Breaker of Chains,” Meereenese warriors start to shout insults at Daenerys to taunt her.
Some of those include classic insults from Monty Python and the Holy Grail such as “Your mother was a hamster,” “Go and boil your bottoms, sons of a silly person,” and “I blow my nose at you!”
The Battle Of The Bastards
Iwan Rheon, who plays Ramsay Snow (Bolton), was originally in line to play a different bastard. Rheon was a top contender to play Jon Snow.
The producers ended up going with Kit for the role of Jon Snow, and we’re glad they did. We can’t imagine anyone else playing the villainous Ramsay.
Maise Williams And Sophie Turner Have Become Close Friends
Williams and Turner are well-known BFFs in real life. The two apparently hit it off immediately in their audition.
All you have to do is take a look at their Instagram pages and you’ll see just how close they are. We hope Williams is a bridesmaid in Turner’s wedding to Joe Jonas.
Some Of The Set Pieces Have Been Given As Gifts
Since millions of dollars are spent on every episode, it’s no surprise that some of the set pieces and props are certified works of art.
The petrified dragon eggs that appear in season one were so expensive and detailed that the producers of the show actually gave one as a gift to George R.R. Martin on his wedding day.
The Most Hated Character Might Surprise You
There are many characters that could be up for the honor of most hated character. Both Joffrey and Ramsay have made a good run for the spot, but it’s Cersei who managed to pull ahead.
Lena Headey says her character is so hated that some fans rip the books from her hands so that she won’t sign it.
You Can Buy The Same Direwolf Loaf
The actor who played Arya’s friend Hot Pie in the series teamed up with Deliveroo to start his own bakery. Their top seller is called the “You Know Nothing John Dough.”
It’s the same direwolf-shaped loaf of bread that you see Hot Pie bake for Arya in the series.