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HBO Announces Production Begins on House of the Dragon

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Posted (edited)
16 hours ago, The Dragon Demands said:

I put together a 40 minute long video about how they got the Velaryon seahorse sigil wrong.

And the awards for Dumbest Heraldry Mistakes goes to...............HBO! Two awards, one for stupidity, the other for sheer cringiness! 

Edited by Jaenara Belarys

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@Ran

Fans have noticed that Emma D'Arcy (Rhaenyra) started following this actress on Instagram:  Nenda Neururer. She's mixed-race (half-black/half-German)...and somewhat resembles one of the masked cast members from spy photos. Could she be Laena Velaryon?
 

 

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Also based on Instagram stalking....we have reason to suspect that Millie Brady has joined the cast - Æthelflæd of Mercia in The Last Kingdom

Based on the fact that Paddy Considine followed HER, she's following Fabien Frankel (Criston Cole), and her age (27 years), plus her sharp angular features (Valyrian)....

...I suspect she may be playing Aemma Arryn.

Possibly Jeyne Arryn.

 

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16 hours ago, The Dragon Demands said:

Australia actress Millie Alcock may have joined the cast too, possibly as Helaena:

 

Would this make her the first Australian to be cast in GOT? 

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Actually no, not the first (where are you located, Bard?)

I did a search for "Australian" in the TV show wiki, and - discounting background prostitutes and stuntmen - five Australians of note have worked on the project:

  • Deborah Riley - not a cast member, but lead Production Designer, Seasons 4 through 8 (she worked on Matrix 1)
  • Esse Davis - Lady Crane in Braavos. Actually an award-winning Australian actress (she was in Matrix 2 & 3)
  • Noah Taylor - "Locke", their ersatz watered-down Vargo Hoat
  • Keisha Castle-Hughes - Obara Sand. Actually born in Australia but moved to New Zealand when she was four years old, half-Maori, generally considers herself a New Zealander.
  • Conan Stevens - Season 1 Gregor Clegane, later recast. You might count this as just a "stuntman" role, depends on who you ask.
  • Brendan Cowell - "Harrag", a  minor ironborn in Season 7, who did have speaking lines and appeared in 3 episodes

So if I had to list "on screen roles of note played by Australians", I can point to two: Esse Davis as Lady Crane and Noah Taylor as !Vargo/Locke.

...she WOULD be the first "starring cast" member (they usually credit the top two dozen cast members as "starring", but "Tier A" are the core seven or so within that)

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I never had an Instagram account before this week, I stuck to Twitter, and lamented how little House of the Dragon cast & crew were posting on it.

Turns out...they're just all on Instagram. And freely post a lot of things (i.e. we guessed Graham McTavish was in the show based on all of them "following" him around the same time).   

I saw that new director Greg Yaitanes, reposted a House of the Dragon news headline over there, so on a whim I asked him a question in the comments....and he actually wrote back.  If only to politely say he can't really talk about that yet.

Basically there's four directors that we know of for Season 1: Miguel Sapochnik, Greg Yaitanes, Claire Kilner, and Geeta Patel. I pointed out around the middle of Game of Thrones (really, seasons 5 to 6), they fell into a pattern of hiring five directors and assigning two episodes to each.

So I asked Yaitanes for a point of clarification; IMDB lists all four directors as doing "1 episode" but that's just a placeholder...could he confirm how many he's actually doing? One or two?  

He politely wrote back that he can't talk about that....but he DID confirm that these are the four directors for Season 1...there isn't another surprise fifth director waiting to be announced (increasingly unlikely as filming started, but HBO doesn't tell us anything).  

So nothing big, but nice that he actually acknowledged a question. 

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Posted (edited)

I've been working with some other fans on social media to stalk the current cast members, to try to figure out who currently unknown cast members are based on who they "follow" - they don't use Twitter, but the cast & crew are surprisingly unguarded about who they follow on Instagram

This is how we found out Graham McTavish joined the cast; Fabien Frankel follows him, he posted a photo saying he'd just been in Cornwall, AND we had a good spy photo of him with his mask off.

So here's a list of people that the current cast suspiciously started "following"; I strongly suspect that they've joined the cast, though the actual roles they may have been cast in are conjecture (click on names for links):

  • Ty Tennant - son of David Tenant. actually made an instagram post saying he was working on "House" with a dragon emoji, but then deleted it when fans took notice. Possibly Aegon II, based on his age?
  • Nenda Neururer - followed by Emma D'Arcy, and started following several HotD fan accounts on Instagram, even relatively obscure ones. Possibly Laena Velaryon? She's half-black and half white (her father is German). STRONGLY resembles one of the masked women we saw at the Cornwall shoot.
  • Millie Brady - follows Paddy Considine, and Fabien Frankel recently started following her. Plays Aethelflaed of Mercia on The Last Kingdom. Was going to start in that "Clan of the Cave Bear" reboot but the pilot got canceled. Possibly playing Jeyne Arryn, based on her age? (27, loosely the same as Rhaenyra's actor)
  • Milly Alcock - Australian actress followed by Ty Tennant, Fabien Frankel, AND director Clare Kilner.  Based on her age (20 years)...possibly playing Helaena Targaryen? Recently posted an Instagram photo WITH Fabien Frankel and some other actors of note. The fact that she's only appeared in Australian TV shows up to now, but suddenly started following these others from HotD, leads me to suspect she's not just a casual work acquaintance from the British TV circuit. Based on her angular facial features though, I suspect Helaena Targaryen.
  • Emily Carey - Followed by Ty Tennant, Milly Alcock, AND Clare Kilner, and she follows Ty, Fabien, and Olivia Cooke. Age 18. Played 12 year old Diana in "Wonder Woman".  ...possibly Alys Blackwood?
  • Anaïs Gallagher - Followed by Olivia Cooke, Fabien Frankel, and Milly Alcock. Age 21. NOT a career actor.

Of course, the last three are all females in the late teens to early 20s and roughly the same age bracket, so it's hard to parse out who they might be playing (for all we know, Emily is playing Helaena, not Milly...or neither).  What younger female characters are in this age range? Sara Snow in the North would be too young at this point, no others in Iron Islands or the Reach at this point, not Dornish either; no younger Baratheons of note during Rogue Prince....really the possible candidates are:

  • Helaena Targaryen
  • Jeyne Arryn & Jessamyn Redfort
  • Johanna Lannister (nee Westerling)
  • Alys Blackwood?

Given that they're apparently building up Harrold Westerling of the Kingsguard for season 1, I suspect that there's a chance that they'll set up Johanna Lannister in season one - you know, having a scene with "uncle Harrold" congratulating her on her betrothal to Jason Lannister.

Another possibility is that the younger set might be playing YOUNGER VERSIONS of the other characters, across timeskips. For all we know, Emily Carey could be playing a younger Rhaenyra for one episode.

Recently there was an Instagram post of Toby Wallace's birthday party, in which also appeared Fabien Frankel, Milly Alcock, Anais Gallagher, and Imogen Waterhouse. Immy is an actor in "The Outpost" and is 26 years old, but hasn't been followed by any of these other people on Instagram. Might just be an acquaintance. 

https://i.redd.it/h3z7oncais371.jpg

Toby Wallace MIGHT be one of the masked actors we got spy photos of, in the same set as Graham McTavish, but the image is blurry.

Edited by The Dragon Demands

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Posted (edited)

I've been working on a news roundup of who the core behind the scenes crew are going to be on HotD Season 1 so far, based on IMDB and a few other reports, so I made this "checklist" of all core positions which have been filled or are waiting to be filled:

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt11198330/fullcredits

Writers:

  • Ryan Condal (showrunner)
  • Charmaine DeGrate (plus producer credit)
  • Sara Hess (plus producer credit)
  • Claire Kiechel
  • Ti Mikkel
  • Wes Tooke

Directors:

  • Miguel Sapochnik
  • Greg Yaitanes
  • Clare Kilner
  • Geeta V. Patel

Costumer Designer

  • Jany Temime (the new Michele Clapton)
  • Simon Brindle returning as lead armorer

Production Designer 

  • Jim Clay (the new Deborah Riley; worked with Temime on Children of Men)

Music Composer

  • Ramin Djawadi (returning)

Linguist

  • David J. Peterson (returning)

Special Effects (practical)

  • Michael Dawson (a 30 year veteran in the industry; the new Joe Bauer)
  • Daren Bailey (marine coordinator, returning - he handled stuntwork on prop ships throughout the run of Game of Thrones)

As-yet unknown positions, based on core behind the scenes Game of Thrones staff (from behind the scenes videos/commentaries)

VFX (digital)

  • Game of Thrones actually subcontracted out to half a dozen major digital effects companies, there was no single one; but the point men on the ground as the VFX team were Joe Bauer and Steve Kullback.

Line Producers

  • The new Bernie Caulfield or Christ Newman types, the "Hand of the King" that coordinates the production as a whole. They have mentioned one guy, Ron Schmidt, but I don't know if he's "the" Line Producer, or one of the minor on-set Line Producers (there's a couple of different ranks, all confusingly referred to as "producer") IMDB lists "Mark Clementson" as the Location Manager for the Cornwall shoot....but a "Location Manager" is responsible for just deciding where all the crew tents and catering go, or where the horse pens go; vital logistics "on the ground" but not the same as the higher up "Line Producer". Like Naomi Liston from the Last Watch documentary.

Casting Director

  • they have a "casting assistant" listed, but we don't know who "the new Nina Gold" is...unusual, as even the Long Night prequel openly said who "the" Casting Director was.

Cinematographers

  • specific Cinematographers each director will work with ( ***Fabian Wagner, Sapochnik's right hand man, has stated he is returning...but what about Anette Haellmigk? Who actually did commentary tracks? Or will new directors bring in new DP's?)

Film Editors

  • Katie Weiland was editor on OVER HALF of Game of Thrones, seasons 2 through 8, and won Emmys for it. Film Editors tend to be a smaller pool than the rotating staff of directors/cinematographers

Stunt Coordinators

  • The new Rowley Irlam or C.C. Smiff, who consistently won awards for the stuntwork on Game of Thrones

Hair Stylist

  • the new Kevin Alexander

Prosthetic Makeup

  • our new equivalent to the Gowers (married couple who ran it). They don't need nearly as much because there are no wights in this, but they still need some prosthetic makeup to depict severe injuries

Horse Wrangler

  • will Camilla Naprous return?
Edited by The Dragon Demands

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A few interesting updates from IMDB:
https://www.imdb.com/title/tt11198330/fullcredits

  • One of several new HD cameramen was added to the list...but it specified that the filming unit he was attached to is indeed called "Fire Unit" - confirming blurry spy photos we saw in Cornwall. The two main filming units on Game of Thrones were Wolf Unit and Dragon Unit (though bizarrely, Dragon Unit was the home unit in Northern Ireland, while Wolf Unit was the "travel unit" who filmed in other countries, thus filming most of the Daenerys scenes)....so one of the units on this, the one filming in England, is "Fire Unit".  Will Spain filming see "Blood Unit"?
  • Several greensmen who design and build gardens for theatrical movies have been hired...who previously worked on Game of Thrones Season 1. ONLY Season 1 though. My theory is that this is because....well, they only started filming in Croatia in Season 2. So they didn't need to build a garden - they filmed all those garden scenes in a local arboretum. Local gardens like that. So if Croatia filming has been scaled back or is totally absent (to focus only on Spain)...they need someone to build garden sets again, like season one.
  • Daren Bailey has returned from Game of Thrones, a professional "Marine Coordinator" who handles filming on boats. Unsurprising that we'd see ships in this, if only to see people going back and forth between King's Landing, Dragonstone, and Driftmark....but will we see ship battles in the Stepstones? We should.

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Posted (edited)

@Ranivaka

an interesting update from IMDB: they've hired on work with a visual effects company called "Lux Machina"

Turns out Lux Machina is a company that does "Virtual Sets" - like what the Mandalorian did, where they have the actors in from of a big 360 degree screen / holodeck of sorts: could House of the Dragon be doing the same?

https://www.luxmc.com/

Edited by The Dragon Demands

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@Ranivaka

In interesting IMDB update: "stand in for the character of Jace": 

https://www.imdb.com/name/nm4130913/?ref_=ttfc_fc_cr76

Our first mention of Jace Velaryon.

Not a casting, just his stand-in for wideshots and such; actually a much older man, Italian but raised in Belgium...height only 4'11" which makes sense if he's a stand-in-for a teenager (4'10" is the cutoff for officially being labeled "dwarfism", and he seems to be in some little person unions or something).  

In and of itself, this news is nothing. But it may help us confirm certain characters are in it and haven't been cut, going forward in the future.

Due to IMDB being sloppy, they might slip out which characters will appear, by listing "stunt double for Jace", "Makeup artist for Jeyne" etc. etc.

The main goal is if we see separate and distinct listings for "Jace", "Luke", and "Joff" -- right now we have no idea if Joff might be cut from this or not. 

 

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Posted (edited)

**** Harwin Strong actor might have just leaked:

 


IMDB leaked out who the stand-in for Jace Velaryon is a few weeks ago (body double for wideshots); Dean Weird is following and being followed BY the Jace Velaryon stand-in.

And he made a suspicious post that he was doing a lot of filming in Cornwall at the EXACT same time as the big Cornwall shoot for House of the Dragon. I'll add this to the official list of "probable" ones.

Intriguingly, he's actually appeared in Game of Thrones: back in Season 4's "The Laws of Gods and Men" he played a background nobleman (I'm still looking for a photo)

Wait, no, he's 33 years old...four years older than Emma D'Arcy....perhaps he's Harwin Strong?

Is this guy in a spy photo from the Cornwall shoot Dean Weir?
 

 

Edited by The Dragon Demands

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