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With production underway on Season 5 (and after getting a few requests) I decided against my better judgement that it was time for another Casting, Rumor and Speculation post. This year was particular hard for me since so many of the new characters to be introduced have been aged up or have very different physical descriptions than in the books. Plus, I did not expect them to use North and South American actors, but casting Pedro Pascal last year changed everything. I tossed in some HBO alums for fun even though I do not necessarily expect them to be cast in Game of Thrones!

Like the last two years, I looked over various fan-casting posts on the internet and came up with some ideas of my own as well. Please, feel free to suggest actors in the comments! This year I could use a lot of help for a number of roles!

With the uncertainty of exactly how the show moves forward as it quickly approaches surpassing the books, and the need to make the last 4 (or 5) books of the A Song of Ice and Fire into only 3 seasons of TV, Season 5 and beyond could be a unique experience very different from the books. In the end it should make for a very interesting production season of news!



I will be updating this post with production news and casting rumors fairly regularly. I hope to do updates every week or two when news is slow, but I will update the big casting rumors as they come in.

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2014-07-24

Variety hints that there could be major casting news at Comic-Con on Friday!

"

David Benioff and D.B. Weiss have already confirmed that the sprawling series is heading to Oberyn Martell’s homeland of Dorne next season. Plus, the web is rife with speculation as to who will play his daughters, known as the Sand Snakes. Expect those casting reveals and a few more (such as Bronn’s new bride, Lady Lollys Stokeworth; religious leader The High Sparrow; Oberyn’s brother, Prince Doran, and his bodyguard, Areo Hotah, and other members of the Martell clan) and hopefully a comment from the producers on the whereabouts of Lady Stoneheart.
"


Nothing truly new here since many have expected a big casting announcement at Comic-Con this year. Not sure this if this is a guarantee based on insider information or simply speculation, but I'm hoping for something similar to Season 3's New Cast Video...



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2014-07-22
Nothing new on the casting front yet, but...
It appears that Season 5 filming may have started!!

Downtown Radio and users on Twitter have reported seeing the familiar Game of thrones film signs posted at shoot locations.

The most interesting report to me comes from Jon on Twitter who commented seeing the signs around Scrabo Tower. That combined with recent Sean Bean comments to Vulture that he would like to appear on Game of Thrones again makes many wonder if that could be the Tower of Joy.. THE f$(%^9 TOWER OF JOY!


The photos of Scrabo Tower certainly make me think of the ToJ... and all that comes with that much anticipated scene! Here is hoping the Seven hear our prayers!

Also of interest...
Last week WiC reported that ABCdesevilla had news on Season 5 shoot locations.
location shoots for season five of Game of Thrones will happen in October, from the 14th to the 22nd at the Real Alcázar in Seville, and then the show will move on to Osuna. Preparations of the alcázar will begin the week before.

Additionally, according to ABC.es, HBO has retained special permission to dye dark blue the waters of the pond surrounding the statue of Mercury. The show will use an eco-friendly product that evaporates several days after being used in the water



Watergardens for sure! Looking forward to Dorne and all it brings!


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2014-07-12
From WiC,
The New Zealand Herald reports that Keisha Castle-Hughes is rumored to be joining Game of Thrones to play a Sand Snake!!


Which Sand Snake the 24-year old actress will play was not stated. The newspaper cites Castle-Hughes’s Twitter activity as another possible hint at casting, with her traveling to London and Belfast recently and frequently expressing enthusiasm for the show.

I saw her in Whale Rider years ago and was impressed, but have not seen her in anything since.... She could make a great Sand Snake, maybe Obara or Nymeria judging from her age and look. She is not how I pictured Nymeria personally, but she could be a nice fit for the description of Lady Nym in the casting leaks. Regardless, she is a quality actress and should be great as whichever Sand Snake she portrays!





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2014-07-07
I thought I would collect the recent production rumors as a start since the casting rumors have been slow coming this year!

- Production news has leaked out from Iceland's RUV that Game of Thrones will be filming in Iceland once more, but only to get a few sprawling landscape shots. No actors needed. There was originally a plan to film a battle in November, but when the scene grew in scale the logistics of filming that time of year with limited daylight hours left the production looking for a new location.

- This year the Game of Thrones production will visit Spain!
HBO is pleased to confirm that a portion of season five of GAME OF THRONES will be shot on several natural locations in the Province of Sevilla. Specifics on the locations will be announced closer to the time of production.
- HBO Press Release

WiC reported that "according to Cadena SER’s sources The Alcázar of Seville has been finalized, as the other palatial candidates were ruled out."



Winter-is-Coming also posted that various news outlets have reported location scouts were seen around the country and that the Andalusian region was chosen. HBO has not officially confirmed any specific locations, but the cities if Seville and Osuna have begun preparations.

In addition the Spanish newspaper El Mundo spoke with Rosario Andújar, the mayor of Osuna, who revealed production members had been to several sites that may be used including The Plaza de Toros, The University, La Colegiata, and The Canteras de Osuna.

Plaza de Toros and the Conteras de Osuna:


The University and the Colegiate de Osuna:


I think The Alcázar of Seville would make a wonderful Water Gardens and the ceiling in its Hall of Ambassadors reminds of the Sunspear throne room ceiling in the books... I think the Plaza de Toros will be the perfect Daznak's Pit!


- The production team also added one more stop in Croatia this year, the coastal city of Šibenik. Home to fortresses, a Mediterranean medieval city, palaces, churches and Dalmatian stone houses it will add a new look to the series.


I think it could make a very good Braavos personally. Compare the two pictures below and imagine the VFX they could add....


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2014-07-02
Five or six weeks ago Winter-is-Coming a couple reports of new characters to be added for Season 5. The list is not complete and there has been no official HBO confirmation. That said, it is a nice starting point!

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Roles Being Cast for Season 5

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Prince Doran Martell:

The older brother of Oberyn, Doran Nymeros Martell is the head of House Martell, the Prince of Dorne, and the Lord of Sunspear. He is described as the major new player this year, appearing in multiple episodes. The fifty-something prince uses a wheelchair, is reclusive and rules wisely. It appears the show is looking to continue the trend it started with Pedro Pascal, and cast Latino actors for the Martell clan.
My Suggestions:
Castulo Guerra, Demian Bichir, Joaquim de Almeida, Marcel Iures, Miguel Sandoval, Sergi Lopez
I think Marcel Iures has a good look to be Pedro Pascal's older brother, is a great actor, and he has a connection to HBO as well. I'm expecting a younger actor for the role though.






Prince Trystane Martell:

Doran's son, Trystane, is the fiance of Princess Myrcella. He is handsome with olive skin and straight black hair. The role is being aged up to 18 years old.
My Suggestions:
None yet.
With the conspicuous omission of Arianne and Quentyn from the new cast leaks Trystane could be made the heir of Sunspear. That would change his character dramatically... Wait and see I guess.





Areo Hotah:

Areo Hotah is the captain of Doran Martell's guards. The show is particularly looking for a black actor to fill the role.
My Suggestions:
Colin Salmon, David Harewood, Eriq Ebouaney, Hugh Quarshie, Isaach De Bankolé, Peter Mensah
The casting news threw me, but I think Eriq Ebouaney and David Harewood both have great looks for the part.





The Sand Snakes, Oberyn Martell’s bastard daughters by different mothers(with ages ranging 18-25):

Obara Sand:

The eldest and most athletic Sand Snake is given to martial pursuits as she considers herself a warrior. Obara is Oberyn's daughter from an Old Town whore. She is a sturdily built woman of swarthy coloring and no particular beauty.
My Suggestions:
Janina Gavankar, Jessica Clark, Lara Rossi, Sabrina Ouazani, Tania Raymonde, Zawe Ashton
I've always had a very difficult time finding the right actress for Obara Sand. I'm very interested to see who they cast!





Nymeria Sand:

Nymeria is elegant, refined, and beautiful. Lady Nym is described as “mixed race,” with her father being the fairer Oberyn and her mother being darker skinned. The second oldest of these Sand Snakes, she’s emotional and very strong. In the book's she is the daughter of a noble woman from Volantis.
My Suggestions:
Antonia Thomas, Georgina Campbell, Hannah John-Kamen, Jessica Clark, Jessica Sula, Karla Crome
I thought they may keep Sarella Sand before Nymeria, but I wonder if they combined the two roles based on the new physical description. I would love to see Hannah John-Kamen or Karla Crome as Nymeria, although Jessica Clark has a very similar look to how I pictured Lady Nym.





Tyene Sand:

The daughter of a Septa and the youngest of the Sand Snakes that we meet, Tyene uses her wits and seductive powers more than physical prowess like her sisters. She is known to be treacherous and just as deadly as the other Sand Snakes, but her weapon is poison.
My Suggestions:
Amaia Salamanca, Ana de Armas, Emily Berrington, Gabriella Wilde, Gemma Ward, Nora Arnezeder
I'm unsure they will cast the blue-eyed blonde in the books, but I always pictured Tyenne something like Aphrodite on Hercules. Gabriella WIlde fits the bill to me.





Varamyr:

Varamyr, better known as Varamyr Sixskins, is a diminutive member of the Wildlings and a skinchanger who controls three wolves, a snow bear, and a shadowcat. He is grey-faced and bald with round shoulders.
My Suggestions:
Dayton Callie, John Kavanagh, Michael Cronin, Ned Dennehy, Peter Firth, Philip Davis
The show is looking to cast a 35-45 year old actor, but I always pictured Varamyr older.





High Sparrow:

The books’ pious head of a religious movement will be appearing in several episodes in season 5. The books describe him as a thin, hard-eyed, grey-haired man with a heavily lined face.
My Suggestions:
Adrian Dunbar, Craig Parkinson, Julian Rhind-Tutt, Richard Bremmer, Russell Kilmister, Stuart Graham
I can think of dozens of actors who could fill the role nicely, but Richard Bremmer and Julian Rhind-Tutt are two of my favorites.





Septa Unella:

The show is looking for a character actress to play the imposing and unrelenting septa who spends a lot of time with a major series character next year. She is described as big boned with callused hands and a scowling homely face.
My Suggestions:
Anna Chancellor, Cara Kelly, Pam Ferris, Paula Malcomson, Siobhan Finneran, Sylvestra Le Touzel
Honestly I never had a good image in my mind for Septa Unella. I think the role will likely go to a less-well-known actress, maybe Sylvestra Le Touzel. She has a great look for the part and who Nina Gold has cast her before.





Maggy the Frog:
A fortune teller in A Feast for Crows, she’ll be in one episode next year.
My Suggestions:
Shohreh Aghdashloo, Miriam Margolyes, Sorcha Cusack
Maggy could be much younger than the actresses I chose if they use a flashback, but I always saw her as older personally.





Lollys Stokeworth:
Lollys is the youngest daughter of Lady Tanda Stokeworth. Described by the books as morbidly obese and is considered simple, placid and dull.
My Suggestions:
None yet.





Yezzan:
Yezzan zo Qaggaz is an extremely wealthy slave trader. In the books he has yellow eyes and is so morbidly obese he can no longer stand. He is obsessed with grotesques and often purchases slaves with physical deformities to add to his "collection".
My Suggestions:
Ian McNeice, Michael Culkin, Mike Verdrengh, Robbie Coltrane, Timothy Spall, Vincent Pastore
I have a suspicion they could go a different direction with Yezzen and cast a more slender actor, but I still pictured larger actors in the role.... I would love to see Verdrengh get the role.





The Waif:
The strange child from the books that Arya encounters will likely be played by an older actress, one in her later teens, and we understand the show is specifically looking for a woman of East Asian descent for the part.
My Suggestions:
Jessica Sula, Karla Crome, Rila Fukushima, Sophie Ellis
This is another role I pictured quite differently than they are casting it. I just don't have much knowledge of young Asian actresses.





According to WiC sources there are two more roles being cast as well..
Imogen: A 12 year old blonde girl. It’s speculated that this may actually be the casting call for young Cersei. Given that there is no Imogen in the books, and we’ve heard that Game of Thrones is auditioning girls for the role of young Cersei, this seems likely.
Brunette girl: 12 years old. There’s no additional information about this part. For book-related possibilities, our best guess with regards to the role is probably Melara, a girl involved in young Cersei’s story with the fortuneteller Maggy the Frog.

With the inclusion of Maggy the Frog some think the young actresses could be used in flashbacks or visions... I think that could be the case, although I know at one point D&D were attempting to keep flashbacks out of the series.


Notes:
- Most of the art used comes from Fantasy Flight's Game of Thrones: The Card Game. Credit to all original artists for their great work.
- Thanks to WinterisComing.net for gathering the rumors and news!