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  1. I’m off to the U.S. for the week to visit family, but ahead of that Linda and I found some time to sit down and (finally) record a video for the Youtube channel where we discuss the news (including comments from George R.R. Martin at Not a Blog) and consider just what the writer and prospective showrunner, Jane Goldman, brings to the table. Also, wild-eyed musings about whether she could convince her frequent collaborator Matthew Vaughn to direct the pilot… View the full article
  2. The marriage of Prince Rhodry Nymeros Martell to Tanyth Toland, a bare month before the more notable marriage of his niece Princess Mariah to Prince Daeron Targaryen, was a surprise to many. The announcement of the betrothal had been surprise enough, but the saga of it—with the prince’s disappearance across the narrow sea, only to return with not one but two women in his company—made many doubt the two would ever swear the holy vows. And indeed, while the Braavosi woman he brought back with him has been most in the company of the orphans of the Greenblood due to the promise of a good dowry from Sunspear’s own treasury, the other and more infamous woman, Samara Sand, has been seen most in the company of ... Prince Rhodry. Which, suffice it to say, has raised brows and fueled rumors of curious arrangements between the prince, his sword-wielding companion, and the woman known throughout Dorne as the Black Tempest. And yet the wedding took place on the appointed day, and without incident. The vows were said—though some might say, after, that the septon seemed to have elided some of the more ceremonious aspects of the ritual—and Rhodry and Tanyth were man and wife. Both had their kin there to witness the event, and many knights, lords, and ladies besides. But for the feast afterward, the wan, still-ailing Prince Marence excused himself, and the Lord Protector his father as well. Yet their absence was not too noticed, and the prince and his new bride presided over the festivities with its many courses. If the prince seemed to drink and eat more than he ought, and at times seemed ill-tempered on certain subjects or towards certain persons, well, that was his reputation. But to the surprise of many, the bedding itself happened with little in the way of ribaldry or even ceremony—the prince, seemingly in haste, simply led Tanyth away shortly after the last course. The morning of the tourney in celebration of the previous day’s nuptials brought a new wave of rumors, of a late night visit by a maester, and of a prince left decidedly unprincely by what some thought was too much wine, and others believed to be indigestion from one portion or another of the many courses. Regardless, that the prince had intended to ride in his wedding tourney was well known, but sitting there beside his wife was Rhodry, looking somewhat miserable and decidedly the worse for wear. Lady Tanyth, solicitous to his every desire, kept his cup well-filled… with water, that is (which might explain the misery). Yet despite the prince’s absence, it was a fine tourney with more than thirty knights and squires in attendance. The jousters rode to the final eight, at which time each was given a second chance to joust if unhorsed. Yet many thought that Ser Aidan Dayne, the Knight of the Twilight, would carry the day given his far-famed skill and the way he defeated one foe after another without difficulty. Others in the contest included the squires Digory Dalt and Mycah Sand, Ser Sebaston Vaith, Sunspear’s captain of the guard Ser Valerin Dayne (wearing the favor, many noted, of Allyria Allyrion), Ser Emeric Santagar, Lady Tanyth’s famous brother Ser Tamlyn, the heir to Yronwood and the prince’s good-brother Ser Farien Yronwood. All acquitted themselves nobly, though the septon’s bastard Mycah Sand seemed in an ill mood after falling to Vaith and Toland, while the other squire, Digory Dalt, rode to such success that he unhorsed Ser Tamlyn and many opined that it was high time he become a knight. At the end, it came down to Ser Aidan and Ser Farien… and to the wonder of many, especially Farien’s kin, the younger man unhorsed the great knight. Yet Ser Aidan had gone undefeated until then, and took his second chance to finally seize the prize to the acclaim of the crowd. Lady Tanyth presented him a woven crown to present to his queen of love and beauty, and many expected him to give it to his beautiful, remote Northern wife, Lady Aisling of House Ryswell. He even started to turn to do so. But all saw her shake her head, a signal that it was right and proper that the bride to be celebrated should wear the crown, as she had done from his hand before. And so Tanyth of House Toland was the day’s Queen of Love and Beauty. In the feasting after, the prince was still denied wine, and was testy. Yet a late gift was presented to him and his wife that drew some attention: a pair of tapestries woven by Tanyth’s cousin, Iona, one celebrating the Black Tempest’s joining the defense of Ghost Hill against Alyn Oakenfist’s besieging forces, and the other celebrating Prince Rhodry’s most famous (or most infamous, if asked of those beyond the red mountains) deed: the killing of King Daeron I Targaryen, the Young Dragon. Visit the Site!
  3. Big news today, thanks to EW: HBO has ordered a pilot to be filmed of one of the several successor shows that have been in development, and we have a lot of details to go with it. The pilot will be from Jane Goldman, who has previously given hints about what she was working on. And the new report shows that yes indeed, there’ll be magical creatures of some kind in her work… Taking place thousands of years before the events of Game of Thrones, the series chronicles the world’s descent from the golden Age of Heroes into its darkest hour. And only one thing is for sure: From the horrifying secrets of Westeros’ history to the true origin of the white walkers, the mysteries of the East, to the Starks of legend… it’s not the story we think we know. While some fans mused going that far back, we admit, it was something we considered quite unlikely because it’d surely give a vastly different feel to the setting. But HBO seems to have been quite intrigued. And, as the EW article notes, this doesn’t necessarily mean HBO is done with pilot orders, as the article notes, “ources say the other four prequel ideas are still under consideration.” It should be stressed this is a pilot order, rather than a greenlight straight to series. HBO is known for being careful with productions, and often ordering pilots, many of which never end up being made. But it’s another step closer for there being some sort of Game of Thrones spinoff in 2020 or later. View the full article
  4. Westeros

    The Call of the Seven

    The High Septon is on his death bed. Maesters have been sent to his side, even the Grand Maester at the request of King Baelor, and all agree that age and the ailments that come with them have taken their toll; the Seven are calling one of their own home at last, to sit among the just in the Father’s golden halls with all those who have come before. The Most Devout have gathered, and prayers from septas, poor brothers, and more can be heard in septs throughout the city. Baelor himself has taken to spending much of his days and nights at the High Septon’s side, reading to him from the Seven-Pointed Star and other holy tracts. Some say he hardly eats, and does so only at the High Septon’s urging. Some have feared that the king might wish to delay the marriage of Prince Daeron to the Dornish princess Mariah in light of the High Septon’s failing. But indeed, the High Septon has insisted otherwise, making the king swear that when he is called to the bosom of the Seven, the king will see it as a cause of celebration rather than grief, and that the binding of Dorne to the Iron Throne through the marriage would be a blessing to the realm. The High Septon, despite his fading strength, insisted that the king go and act as septon to the prince and princess, joining them in holy wedlock. And so the king shall do. As to the question of the High Septon’s successor, it is said that some of the Most Devout have approached the king to discuss the matter, but Baelor has refused to hear them, saying that the gods will provide guidance when the time is right. And so the realm waits, and in the Red Keep preparations are made for the court to travel to Dorne. Already at the docks are more than a dozen galleys, chosen by Lord Velaryon for the task of escorting the wedding party to Dorne. And there are whispers that a new white cloak is being readied, for the long-awaited seventh White Sword. Many speculate they know who the king will name, but the most common rumor—seemingly given impetuous by the High Septon’s own failing health—is that the king has become convinced to name a good and upright knight to the Kingsguard, a man known for piety as well as courage: Ser Peron Stone, called the Pious. Visit the Site!
  5. For those with a 4K monitor or television with internet capability, HBO has released a short, sweet 4K trailer for today’s release of the Game of Thrones Season 1 4k Blu-ray. We’ve discussed the details of this release in our initial post, but suffice it to say the 4K scenes featured in the trailer look very detailed indeed! You can see the trailer below: (And for those wondering, we’ve wrapped up our own contest for two copies of the UHD release! Congratulations to Al and BransNotTheNightKing!) View the full article
  6. As previously reported, HBO is preparing to release the first season of Game of Thrones in 4k Blu-ray format on June 5th. In time with that, we’re pleased to announce a contest to win a copy of the Blu-ray! This contest is, first off, US only! But that said, there’s two of these Blu-ray collections on offer. You’re allowed two entries, and only two, one each for Facebook and one for Twitter. To enter via Facebook, post to the comment thread of this very post either directly at Westeros.org or via the Westeros Facebook Page. To enter via Twitter, simply reply send us a reply to the tweet about this post on the Westerosorg timeline. Winners will be chosen on the 5th of June, with the sets sent out on June 6th. View the full article
  7. In interview with The Indian Express, award-winning writer and director Brian Helgeland shared some thoughts on his work on one of five (or perhaps four) possible successors to Game of Thrones following its final season. This makes the second screenwriter attached to the successors to talk publicly about their work, following Jane Goldman‘s comments in an IGN interview last year. The first take away: fan speculation that Helgeland had moved on, due to his being attached to write and direct a new film, seems to have been mistaken. read on >>> View the full article
  8. Amazon is now listing the Game of Thrones season 1 4K, Ultra HD, HDR Blu-ray set. It was announced earlier this month. See our post at the time for more details, including commentary on the resolution the show was shot at across different seasons to have a better understanding of the source they’ll be working with. Of course, a 4K release will mean one big advantage: a higher bitrate, which will mean a lot more detail perserved even in the case when they’re upscaling from 1080p. View the full article
  9. Culturefly has unveiled their second subscription box in their Game of Thrones series, as well as its theme: the North and the Lands Beyond the Wall. You can glimpse hints of what exclusive items the box will contain at ”>their page, which seem to include the inevitable Stark-branded item, as well as what we’re guessing are artworks depicting giants and wights, and what may be a sculpted weirwood. A couple of months ago we had the pleasure of unboxing their first entry in the series, which you can see below: read on >>> View the full article
  10. A press release from HBO announces that for the first time ever, Game of Thrones will get the 4k treatment. Available from June 5th, the first season of Game of Thrones will be available to be purchased as 4K Ultra HD Bluray or 4K digital download. Bonus features all sound like the same from the original season 1 DVD release. We’ll have the full text below, but it’s worth noting that the first season was recorded to HDCAM-SR tapes in high bitrate 1080p. The next two seasons were also shot at 1080p, and only the fourth and following seasons were shot at the 2880p resolution. So far as we know, VFX for at least the first four seasons were all done at 1080P as well, and it’s unclear if that has ever changed. Long and short of it, this and any future 4K Ultra HD Blurays are going to be upscaled to 4K rather than be native resolution, although they should gain substantially from the higher bitrates the media allows. Here’s the press release below: read on >>> View the full article
  11. Westeros

    The Gremlin Returns

    In his latest “Not a Blog” post, George R.R. Martin has posted a cryptic message featuring Froggy the Gremlin, which means he’s having fun presenting a puzzle to fans. Given the television tag in the post, and the reference to the dragon having three heads, thoughts certainly turn to his presenting some new information regarding HBO’s follow-ups to Game of Thrones. As we know, originally four concepts were being developed by Max Borenstein, Jane Goldman, Carly Wray, and Brian Helgeland—but early on George hinted at a 5th pitch, which came to pass when HBO announced that Game of Thrones writer and producer Bryan Cogman was also working on a proposal with George. That seems to easily explain the first two sets of images: Four series became five. As to the rest? read on >>> View the full article
  12. Reports in the entertainment press have brought attention to remarks from HBO executives at the INTV Conference that have touched on Game of Thrones. Variety reports that Francesca Orsi—the HBO’s senior VP for Drama—promised that the final season of the show will be a satisfying climax, including the anecdote that cast members at the table read of the six scripts openly wept and that there were “15 or 20 minutes” of applause when the last page was read. read on >>> View the full article
  13. To benefit Whale and Dolphin Conservation, the leading charity to protect whales and dolphins around the world, Jerome Flynn—everyone’s favorite mercenary sellsword, Bronn—will join a lucky winner on a trip to Iceland to tour various of the locations featured in Game of Thrones... as well as some extra treats. The fundraiser, hosted at Prizeo, is a sweepstakes where every $1 donated gets one entry in a draw (minimum donation is $10). Read Jerome’s message to supporters explaining the details: I want you to join me “Beyond the Wall” to get a sneak peek and visit famous filming locations from the series, beyond the Seven Kingdoms. I’ll fly you and a friend to Iceland, and will take you on a tour of some of the most breath-taking Game of Thrones locations including the ‘First of the First Men’ and the ‘mountain that looks like an arrowhead’ from Season 7. Your flights and hotel accommodation will be covered, and we’ll even go on a private whale watching trip at one of the world’s best whale watching spots, where you’ll have the chance to see orcas, humpbacks, dolphins, and sperm whales wild and free in their natural habitat. And better yet - if you spot an orca during the trip who doesn’t yet have a name in the Icelandic orca catalogue, you’ll be able to choose a name for him or her, which will be used by the whale watchers and scientists forevermore! It only takes a $10 minimum donation to enter to win this amazing trip of a lifetime! Your donation supports Whale and Dolphin Conservation’s vital work protecting these amazing creatures from the many threats they face. Thank you so much for your support. I can’t wait to meet one of you in Iceland! The WDC fundraiser ends on April 23rd. View the full article
  14. Big news out of Lucasfilm, as their official Star Wars site announces that David Benioff and D.B. Weiss are planning to go to a galaxy far, far away. Per the announcement: It was announced today that Benioff and Weiss, creators of the smash-hit, Emmy Award-winning television series Game of Thrones, will write and produce a new series of Star Wars films. These new films will be separate from both the episodic Skywalker saga and the recently-announced trilogy being developed by Rian Johnson, writer-director of Star Wars: The Last Jedi. From Benioff and Weiss’s statement, they plan to jump into this as soon as Game of Thrones is done, meaning they’re keeping themselves quite busy as they’re also supposed to be executive producing the controversial HBO project Confederate. View the full article
  15. After a long trip through Swedish customs, CultureFly’s Game of Thrones Box has arrived for Linda to unbox. The very first entry in a quarterly series of boxes, which can be bought individually or subscribed to annually, is inspired by the noble houses of Westeros and features a number of exclusive items that will only be found in this limited edition box. See the video for the unboxing! Intrigued? Put in WESTEROS20 when ordering—yes, they do ship internationally, though bear in mind import fees may apply—and get a 20% discount! More videos to come… View the full article