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Westeros Blog: Daenerys Casting Resumes

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While this may be old news for some, we haven’t reported it up until now because we’ve had no official confirmation of any kind regarding it. We had contacted HBO about this immediately after the rumors based on Showfax’s new casting sides (pages of dialogue for use in auditions) had gone up. From our discussion with HBO, all we can say is that officially, HBO’s policy is to never discuss recasting or even rumors of recasting, and they’re unable to offer any information either confirming or denying recasting.

However, as we saw on Twitter, more than one actress has allegedly confirmed via Twitter that they are pursuing the role of Daenerys. So, we’ll take this as its being highly likely that casting is taking place for the role. However, we caution that we know nothing yet as to the reasons or the end results. Having read around a bit, there are possibilities that suggest that Tamzin Merchant remains the primary choice for the role, but additional casting is taking place as insurance against her departure for reasons unknown. While we agree that the likeliest supposition is that Merchant is no longer in the role, we’ll caution against taking this as an absolute certainty.

But if Merchant is out of the role, what does this mean? Well, it seems they’ll be forced to go back to Morocco—or build fresh sets in Belfast to represent it—to reshoot all the scenes there. As some may recall, GRRM indicated that a return to Morocco was a possibility but not a certainty. Starting the renewed production with major reshoots—on top of any new reshoots needed now that Michelle Fairley is in the role of Catelyn Stark—is not the greatest way to start a production, and may lead to a tight shooting schedule to begin with, but should be entirely manageable. Recasting is more the rule than the exception when it comes to pilots, and consequent reshooting goes hand in hand with that.

We’ll provide more information when we can.

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Doesn't bother me. I saw some screencaps of the new season of The Tudors yesterday and I was staring at Tamzin Merchant going "Dany? Really? I just don't see it".

Just as I prefer our new Cat, I feel sure our new Dany will be really impressive too.

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Yeah.

Of course I can't count on the person eventually landing the role looking more like the Dany I had imagined than Tamzin Merchant (who was about fifteen pacific oceans off), but this Elena Satine chick actually DOES come fairly close.

Not that my personal taste should be taken into consideration! I'm one of those few oddballs who doesn't find Angelina Jolie attractive in the least...

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There aren't so few people who don't find Jolie attractive. Both me and my significant other are often puzzled by her popularity, for example.

And yeah, this actress has somewhat plausible looks.

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Jolie's pretty, but she is not aging well.

Satine looks perfect for Dany. I never objected to Merchant, but she was never a perfect fit. Satine is, although she's a little too old (Give me 18 year old or give me 19!). I would be happy if she was cast.

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An update, offered without comment:

It's being claimed that the individual who tweeted that they had auditioned for Daenerys is in fact an impostor, and not the actress they claim to be. The statement that the individual auditioned for Game of Thrones is uncontested, but this is said to have been taken from a private Facebook entry, and that any responses via Twitter to queries from fans were written by the impostor.

***

For our part, we've chosen to remove the actress's name and generalize the report out of respect for the wishes of the affected actress, but are otherwise leaving it as is since time and events do indicate that the thrust of the article -- that there's new casting for the roll for reasons unknown -- is still substantially correct.

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Abyss posted over on WiC this very awesome video which apparently is an audition by Charlotte Salt for the role of Dany, better watch it while you can, it might be pulled, though it might also be a practice audition.

I like her facial expressions and the little nuances she adds to the audition. If you close your eyes and listen it is even better, as the the room, lighting and her contemporary hairstyle and outfit can be distracting.

Enjoy Charlotte Salt Audition

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Wow. Thats amazing I can't wait to see this played out on screen, she was pretty good I'm still voting for Elena Saine though.

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It's a good audition tape. I don't know that she'd get in trouble for this. She may well have been posting this in lieu of sending a physical tape in. Just send a link to the video - just as easy and much cheaper.

To me she looks maybe a bit old for the role - she looks her actual age to me, and not a teenager. I could definitely see her as Doreah or maybe Shae (though Shae is only, what, 19?).

I wonder how many different pronunciations of all the made-up words they've heard. She had some interesting ones, though no I wonder if I've just been pronouncing a few of them wrong.

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She may well have been posting this in lieu of sending a physical tape in. Just send a link to the video - just as easy and much cheaper.

Do people do this often? Audition via youtube?

I thought the same re. Doreah, when I first saw her that was who came to mind. No strong feelings against her being Dany though.

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I thought she was pretty good as Ursula in "The Tudors", although she seems a little old for the role - she definately looks older that Harry Lloyd. I think that she has the fire to play a character like Asha Greyjoy, or maybe even Melisandre.

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I'd think that if this was to be shared with the casting directors, it would have been private and we would never have seen it. Looking at her Youtube channel, she's put up several other auditions like this. Either they're sharing practice runs, or this is what she sends out and just feels it's okay if she posts it.

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I want to know who the guy who reads for Jorah in the video is!

They should give him a role, haha.

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I want to know who the guy who reads for Jorah in the video is!

They should give him a role, haha.

Exactly what I thought! That girl's acting was a bit meh, but that guy was pretty good, heh.

As for the recasting of Dany, I already was extremely dissapointed with the previous choice, so I'm not getting my hopes up this time.

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Do people do this often? Audition via youtube?

I thought the same re. Doreah, when I first saw her that was who came to mind. No strong feelings against her being Dany though.

Its got her on the cover of WIC. If she wanted to up her profile a bit then she's been successful. Seems a decent actress if a bit old for Danny though.

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I didn't like Tamzin and though Charlotte Salt looks much more how I imagined Dany, there's something about her acting I don't like. Maybe she's really too mature or doesn't understand this character as I do... Or the whole situation is just so unnatural. At least, I don't think she looks much too old, Dany's gonna be 15 in the TV series which is not that hard to achieve with good make-up.

And Jorah is great!

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I could definitely see her as Shae. Although Shae is only 18, she could easily be aged up a couple of years at absolutely no cost whatsoever to the story, and is supposed to be sardonic, older than her years.

Apart from looking too old, Ms. Salt seems too world-weary to pull off Daenerys convincingly. A big part of that is her voice. It's too deep, a womanly alto when Dany desperately needs to have a little girl's voice. If they were making A Dance with Dragons this year, I could see her as Dany, but I just have a hard time picturing her as being so young and so vulnerable as Dany in AGOT. That was part of what I really dug about Tamzin Merchant in the role: vulnerability looked like it came very easily to her; it needs to be Dany's natural state of being.

None of this should be interpreted as direct criticism to Ms. Salt's abilities as an actress. I like her, very much actually, but not for Daenerys.

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