April 15, 2019
Watch: ‘Game of Thrones’ Premiere Featured Cameos From Martin Starr and Rob McElhenney, George Lucas Visited the Set, and More
Game of Thrones is back, but even those who are watching closely may have missed a couple of high-profile cameos in last night’s season premiere. Did you catch Martin Starr (Silicon Valley, Party Down, Freaks and Geeks) and Rob McElhenney (It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia) in small roles? Did you know Star Wars creator George Lucas visited the set during the filming of “Winterfell”? See all of that and more in a great new behind-the-scenes video, head inside the episode to get more insights from the showrunners, and re-watch that brand new title sequence below.
Game of Thrones Cameos, Behind the Scenes Footage, and More
HBO started producing Game Revealed, a series of short making-of documentaries, during the show’s seventh season, and they’re continuing for season 8. This is a high quality behind the scenes video, something clearly made with fans in mind that’s as informative as it is entertaining (gotta love those bloopers sporadically placed throughout).
Showrunners David Benioff and Dan Weiss are friends with the It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia guys – they wrote one episode of that show and appeared as “Bored Lifeguard #1 and #2” in another – so it’s cool to see McElhenney (aka “Mac”) finally make an appearance on Thrones years later. Not sure why Martin Starr was along for the ride, but more power to him!
As for George Lucas, it makes sense that he’d drop by since Benioff and Weiss are working on a new Star Wars trilogy for his old company, Lucasfilm. Plus, Lucas has another Star Wars connection on the set in the form of actress Emilia Clarke, who played Qi’ra in Solo: A Star Wars Story.
“When we found out that George Lucas wanted to visit, we thought maybe it was a practical joke. And then we were really excited and also nervous because – it’s George Lucas,” Benioff said. “The first time I can remember telling stories was me as a little kid mashing together these stormtrooper dolls. For so many of us, he’s the one who started our obsession with this kind of big, epic storytelling.”
I like this video because it’s much more in-depth than the shorter “Inside the Episode” featurettes that also accompany each episode. But feel free to watch that, too! I don’t blame anyone for wanting as much Game of Thrones #content as possible these days – it’s like finally dunking your head in a cool tank of water after traversing a Thrones-less desert for almost two years.
See what I mean, though? That first featurette is infinitely better. This one has a few little interesting moments, but is largely just telling us what we already know. One thing worth pointing out, though: that waterfall area where Jon and Dany landed was apparently supposed to be a spot where Jon used to hunt as a kid. I don’t think the episode itself indicated that in any way, but there you go!
As a record-breaking (for HBO) 17.4 million viewers watched the season eight premiere last night, precipitating HBO’s biggest night of streaming ever, fans were treated to a brand new title sequence. Instead of flying all across the map of the known world, this one shows off a newly-damaged Wall, heads briefly down to Last Hearth, and then spends a majority of its time zeroing in on two key locations: Winterfell and King’s Landing. These opening credits has always been among the coolest on television, and it’s especially neat to see them devote even more time to creating recognizable areas from these two sets. Keep an eye out for details like the Targaryen dragons burning cities across the bands of the astrolabe, a Lannister soldier holding a severed wolf’s head next to a wolf full of arrows hanging in the middle of the frame, and even smaller little easter eggs, like Cersei’s map of Westeros on the floor.