Preparations are now underway in Zumaia for Game of Thrones filming!

We’re in the thick of Game of Thrones filming season now, with activity hopping in Northern Ireland, and shooting in Spain due to begin soon. Like proper filming buffs, we’re in full #PinkSignWatch mode from now until February.

The 6th annual TitanCon gathering went down this weekend in Belfast. While out and about in Northern Ireland this morning, one of the guests spotted a sign. Looks like GoT is filming again (or still, we should say) in Banbridge, home of Linen Mill Studios.

Elsewhere in N. Ireland, signs are still being spotted near Ballycastle. We first heard of filming in that area a few days back, with one reader finding a sign there last Thursday and another snapping a photo of production at work. Today, a Redditor came across another sign in the area:

[NO SPOILERS] How the cast and production team get around Northern Ireland. Follow the GOT signs

We have yet to see evidence of actual shooting though- no photos of actors coming and going from set and the traffic in that area still seems light. At this point, they may still be in the preparations stage.

Itzurun Beach

Itzurun Beach

In Spain, it’s about to get a whole lot busier. Crews arrived today in the northern Basque Country town of Zumaia to begin preparations for season 7 filming. HBO’s production staff will spend the next three weeks putting together the equipment for recording in Zumaia, particularly what’s needed near Itzurun Beach and the “flysch,” the unusual rock formations that Zumaia is well known for. The beach will be closed for six days during filming time, which is expected to begin around October 26th.

As for what they’ll be filming in Zumaia, Los Siete Reinos has new spoilers and information for us today. That’s right, SPOILERS! 

L7R has learned that for shooting in Zumaia, GoT is hiring rowers for a scene at sea. Shooting out on open waters is not very common for the show. They typically prefer to shoot with their usual ship on the studio lot with the watery environment added in post, or in some situations, they remain on location close to the shore. But in Zumaia, apparently this boating scene will be genuinely on the water.

L7R is also sharing a rumor that HBO is revisiting the monastery of San Isidoro del Campo, in Santiponce, Seville. HBO had reportedly decided not to film there a while back, during scouting, because it was too modern-looking, but with the delay in filming, there is time to consider more locations. This is however unconfirmed, and the location may stay off the table.

Sources have also informed them the “action scene” being shot in the Roman ruins Italica won’t be a battle. There will be some sort of conflict, but not a full-scale battle. Italica is likely the Dragonpit, as many have suspected, and which sources have told us we can expect to see in season 7.

One last tidbit from L7R’s report: the only place in the city of Seville where GoT will be filming this season is the Royal Shipyards, with GoT passing over the Real Alcazar this season. Will that mean a decreased Dornish presence? Can we get any more decreased than we did in season 6? We just might find out.

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    1. I’m so excited to finally see a battle on the sea!! Euron for sure will be involved. I wonder if team Dany will split before they land so this could be Yara/Theon x Euron or if not The Armada x Euron.

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    2. Kargaryen,

      It could be that Euron’s purpose was to propel Theon/Yara toward Essos, and toward the Dragon Queen. He’s the one who gave them the idea to ally with Dany. Actually, he practically left them no other choice. Euron is also a way for Theon to complete his transformation…from lost boy jerk, to victim, to strong leader – potentially.

      I tend to agree with the folks who say Euron has shown up at the 11th hour, so he can’t suddenly be a main character that will decimate Dany’s forces.

      Euron might be a minor complication for Dany, but in an indirect way as he wages war on her allies Theon/Yara. Yara told Theon that their uncle will never stop hunting them because they are a threat to him as long as they’re alive.

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    3. Anon:
      Cool.

      I guess if there’s rowing, that means a ship is anchored offshore and a landing party is rowing toward shore?

      Not necessarily. Could be longships from the Iron Fleet, which rely as much on rowers as on their small sails.

      Or could just be Gendry, finally making landfall…

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    4. I thought I read somewhere that a storm blows Dany’s ship off-course and she (and Tyrion/Varys/Missandei/Greyworm) wind up closer to the North than the South of Westeros. Was that just a rumor that’s been squashed?

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    5. JenniferH:
      I thought I read somewhere that a storm blows Dany’s ship off-course and she (and Tyrion/Varys/Missandei/Greyworm) wind up closer to the North than the South of Westeros. Was that just a rumor that’s been squashed?

      Just typical off-season fan speculation and tinfoil theorycrafting, I think.

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    6. Anon,

      Yeah, I’m not expecting him to decimate half of her army like some, but a little trouble yeah. The biggest war should be Cersei x Dany still.

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    7. Kargaryen,

      I think it’s extremely likely that Dany and the Greyjoys split, probably because of Euron’s attack, based on the spoilers we have got so far as well as the actors’ filming schedules. Alfie/ Gemma and Emilia have yet to be in Belfast at the same time I think.
      I wonder what action will take place in the Dragonpit, someone trying to take control of one of the dragons?
      Are they still filming Winterfell scenes in Banbridge? Liam Cunningham at least, is not in Belfast as he seems to be in Syria right now. Dunno about the others.

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    8. I wonder if the Dragonpit will be used for present day scenes, or flashbacks…

      I don’t think Dorne’s presence will be lessened – it’s rulers will go out to meet whoever lands on their shores. Which can be shown in about as many scenes as season 6 devoted to Dorne, and doesn’t require the Alcazar.

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    9. In my view Euron is teaming up with Cersei and definitely needs to give Dany a bloody nose next season. Probably this means the death of Yara and some of the inner circle but Dany will clearly win before heading North.

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    10. Excellent news, and perfectly timed… I’m in Malaga region now on vacation and gonna take a few trips to Almodovar del rio, Ithaca and the Seville dockyards. Guessing it’s way too early to see anything there, but will be good to check the locations out and try and guess what they may be in S7. ?

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    11. JenniferH,

      Dany going North was my speculation, but now I tend to abandon it, as more spoilers become available. And those who say that Euron is not the caracter to cause Dany any major problems are probably right: it won’t be Euron to decimate her forces – it will be Cersei.
      Here is my new vision of Dany’s midpoint defeat, if anyone is interested. Dany lands on the northern coast of the Sea of Dorne in the Stormlands (see In Production Teaser map at 1.30). The coast is rather rocky, so, the entire landing and deployment operation migth take several days, and with that in progress Dany will get a message that Ollena is sending her a wagon train with supplies, and that Cersei’s forces have ambushed that (see earlier filming spoilers). So, Dany will send her Dothraki riders to reclaim the vagon train and lead them herself on Drogon.
      However, there will be some sort of decoy. Lulus Mum has noticed that In Production Teaser shows the Lannister banner unfolding over the box labelled as Ollena’s Carriage at 0.20. So I have a feeling that one way or another, the supposed Tyrell wagons will appear to be Cersei’s wagons carrying catapults and ballistas instead of proviosion, and when Dany flies in on Drogon, they will shoot him (I hope not lethally), which will result in Dany’s fall.
      Then the Dothraki will panic (BTW, wagons can be efficiently used as a temporary fortification against the charging cavalry) and retreat to the initial encampment. But then Euron will come to attack from the sea, which will result in decimation of the fleet and capture of one of the Greyjoys. Finally, it will be up to Tyrion and the Unsulled to save what can be saved including Dany. Maybe, he will mount one of the remaining dragons, but I would rather bet on a “Fight for yourselves, not for the queen” type speach. One way or another, Tyrion will manage to repell the attack, but their losses will be severe and they will be stuck somewhere inbetween Cersei and Euron and Drogon (or all the three dragons) will be captured. Speeking frankly, I don’t know how you can capture a fire-breathing dragon, but maybe the Citadel knows some kind of knockout potion or Drogon will simply be unconscious…
      One way or another, I feel like Drogon (or all three dragons) will end up locked in the Dragon Pit by Cersey and Euron, and the action sequence there will be the dragon rescue operation. And Sam may have a role in it too: maybe he’ll find an antidot for whatever drug Euron will be using to control the dragons or similar. And when KL will see Dany flying on Drogon again, it will rise in revolt (all that build up of the publich unrest has to lead somewhere too).
      So, how do you like this theory?

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    12. Seems more and more obvious Dany et al are landing at the Stormlands, and will likely face a huge storm- which is kinda a neat parallel, as she was born during the fiercest storm in living memory.

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    13. Firannion,

      Rewatching 7.09 and Tyrion says “Thank you for the armada” to the defeated Masters. Storms and privateers (pirates) … will Daenerys’ armada go the way of its Spanish predecessor?

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    14. That beach reminds me a lot of the one they used in season two for Dragonstone scenes between Davos and Matthos/Salladhor Saan – it could be that Daenerys lands there. Alternatively, I think it could make a good setting for the Stormlands, particularly the land adjacent to Storm’s End. I am sure a lot more will become clear regarding locations/cast involvement when Spanish filming actually begins.

      As for the Dornish contingent, I don’t think there is a need for them to be seen at the Water Gardens – it would make sense, given their new alliance with Daenerys, for them to go and meet her wherever she is due to land. I don’t anticipate them getting much more screentime than they did in season six; the Iron Islands plot and the Tyrion vs Cersei plot are more likely to be an extension of Daenerys’s story arc this season than Dorne.

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    15. Inga,

      How do you capture a dragon? If they injure a dragon, they’d look to kill it. Otherwise good prediction. Something bad has to happen to Dany. I don’t see them putting that much tactical thought into the battles vis a vis the wagons as cavalry shields. I’d expect if Danys in trouble someone helps her by attacking the enemy suddenly from behind. That’s more the GoT mo.

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    16. Sean C.:
      Kargaryen,

      What does Cersei have that would pose any kind of challenge to Dany?

      Anybody seeking to challenge Daenerys needs magic capable of challenging her dragons.

      Personally, I think it’s very unlikely that Cersei could cause too much trouble considering Dany’s army plus the fact that she has 3 dragons. But we know there’s a big battle in this season, and it will more likely be between the two. Dany hasn’t had a big battle yet, they’ve all been a slaughter so in order for her to have a big battle she’ll have to lose a part of her army. But I don’t see her being defeated yet.

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    17. Inga,

      If Dany falls from Drogon, unless it’s on the water she’s gonna die. I assume she’d have more to do then fall from her dragon and then showing up only by the end too.

      Plus I don’t see how you capture a dragon that big unless you use magic, which so far havent been introduced in the show yet, not the type of magic to tame dragons. I can see the dragonpit being used to put an injured dragon though while it heals.

      I agree with Cersei’s part though, based on the leaks we’ve got from spain so far.

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    18. Kargaryen,

      Dany would be able to park her injured dragon in the dragonpit only if she has already taken KL, otherwise she wouldn’t have access to it. The action scenes being mentioned here seem to suggest that her conquest is not yet over.
      They can still introduce the dragonbinder or some equivalent next season, imo. Euron could find some means to take control over one of her dragons, who is kept in the dragonpit. I could be completely wrong, just throwing alternatives 🙂 .

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    19. WallyFrench,

      Well, I do recognize that capturing a dragon would be a big deal. It has been established that people of Westeros have certain knowledge about poisons and drugs. Say, the simplest opium (milk of the poppy) – could it work on a dragon? Probably, though they would need that in barrels. And there are poisons too, and using poisoned arrows or spears against dragons sounds like a good idea. And there is Qyburn who already has some practice of creating controllable zombie out of mortally injured/poisoned Mountain. He might trie his reanimation skills on a dragon too.
      One way or another, I think that Cersei and Euron will trie to gain control over the dragons, rather than kill them, partly because such intention has been established in the books, partly because the dragons have to play a part in the Battle for the Dawn.
      I have even developed a theory that dragons had been created by someone as a counterbalance to the WW, and that the WW began to rise, when dragons became extinct.
      I hope that Sam will find more information about all these things next season.

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    20. Some good theories but by the end surely both the Dragons and White walkers need to be dead in order for there to be some piece.

      As for Dany, I can see her losing this battle in episode 2 or 3 then conquering Kings Landing episode 6 with the finale her heading north.

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    21. I hate to say this but I’m really afraid that Euron is going to capture Yara. I don’t know why, but for some reason I’ve just got this feeling that it won’t be Theon. I, of course, am probably wrong.

      Other than the Dragonhorn that Sam found there has been no mention of it at any other time. We don’t even know what became of it. I think if dragons get killed this season it won’t be with the use of a horn. Just my own opinion. I do think though that we are going to see them hurt, injured and perhaps killed. I just don’t see 3 dragons still hanging around when all is said and done.

      As to Dorne, the less I see of that storyline the better. It just was not handled well at all and I’m pretty sure that D&D know it was not popular with their viewers. The sooner the SS disappear from the story the happier I’ll be…:)

      I do think Cersei and Euron will band together because they need each other against Dany. Separately, I don’t think they’d stand a chance.

      These new locations are exciting. I am so excited to see what will happen in S7. I truly hope the KITN will be able to rally enough support to take on the WW before it’s too late…

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    22. I would say it’s very likely to be Yara rather than Theon (who is the more important character), and I think she will die too as she’s probably not required for the final season which is likely to be some version of Team Jon, Team Dany and Team white walkers.

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    23. Kargaryen,

      The rumours say some of the main character will fall into the water – that’s the point!
      And back to the dragon capturing idea, I would bet on a poisoned arrow or spear. Dragons are fire made flesh, but still flesh. And I think it wouldn’t be too big a stretch for Qyburn to invent something like a tranquilizer darts or paralyzing poison. If the maesters have been working on neutralization of the dragons, they may have discovered one or two things.

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    24. Jon Snowed:
      I would say it’s very likely to be Yara rather than Theon (who is the more important character), and I think she will die too as she’s probably not required for the final season which is likely to be some version of Team Jon, Team Danyand Team white walkers.

      Agree – and in a way, Yara is the bigger threat to Euron in the long-term as she is able to produce an heir and continue Balon’s line; Theon, as Euron established at the Kingsmoot, is unable to do so. That makes her the more obvious target. And, as much as I like Yara, I don’t think I could deal with more Theon torture – he has suffered enough!!

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    25. I’m not so confident about Rhaegal and Viserion making it to S8 tbh. Or Dany should lose one or the two (idk how though) during the season, then getting back by the end of the season. Maybe it won’t happen in the books but its a good way for the show to save CGI budget. As for Drogon, I’d say his chances of being in S8 are 99,9%.

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    26. Inga,

      Oh, I did see that rumor, I just assumed you said Dany/Drogon would face Cersei’s forces on the ground and there they’d fall. My mistake.

        Quote  Reply

    27. Kargaryen:
      ghost of winterfell,

      Yup, I’m assuming she’d go to the dragonpits after taking KL, which should happen by ep06 at most, at least imo.

      If she goes to the dragonpit after taking KL, what action scene could take place over there? The fact that there are “action scenes” happening there seems to suggest that this will happen before she takes KL.

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    28. ghost of winterfell: If she goes to the dragonpit after taking KL, what action scene could take place over there? The fact that there are “action scenes” happening there seems to suggest that this will happen before she takes KL.

      Unless they change the location, in the show at least the dragonpit is in the middle of the city. They could have changed it for S7. I just assumed any conflict between Dany/Cersei would happen out of the city, but again it’s an assumption.

      I guess most scenes involving dragons could be “action scenes”, at least in the show most times they show up there’s some action. If she’s getting one dragon back for example I could see that being an action scene, and could happen after a conflit. But again, we’ll have to wait and see what the scene is about.

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    29. ghost of winterfell,

      That’s why I am saying that the action scene in the Dragonpit will be some kind of dragon rescue mission and when Dany breaks out mounted on Drogon, KL will rise in revolt againt Cersei. All that build-up of the public unrest has to have some pay-off, IMO, and that would give Dany a clean victory, though she will hardly have time to enjoy it: most probably her triumph will be combined with the fall of the Wall and she will have to fly North even without landing.

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    30. Kargaryen,

      Let me make myself clear. I imagine Dany’s clash with Cersei’s forces happening somehere along the coastal line or nearby. So, if Drogon is injured and feels he can’t fly anymore, he will try to drop her into the water – maybe there will be some kind of a lake or a lagoon nearby, as the location the showrunners have chosen for this sceen doesn’t look for me like an open sea at least based on the photos.

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    31. Dee Stark,

      The true test is the second episode (and maybe third). We’ll have to see if it drops. I personally found the show interesting enough to continue.

      The numbers for Vinyl are embarrassing.

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    32. I can’t see Dany’s fleet and all 3 dragons surviving this season, she’s way to OP. Either the writers take a page from history maybe and one of the battles between Caeser and Pompeii where Caesers fleet is destroyed in a storm or maybe Euron has that magic horn that I see on covers of GRRMs next book, would be cool to see a dragon vs dragon fight.

      I do recall the Dany actress mentioning a sad scene that didn’t contain any character deaths. Maybe a dragon?

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    33. Dee Stark,

      Saw it. Pretty good premiere. Will continue to watch, no doubt.

      It’s just that I kinda guess where the story is going. I hope for some twists. If not, oh well, a story can be good even if it’s predictable.

      EDIT: Will watch just for the actors anyway. Harrison and Hopkins are just amazing.

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    34. Mawk: I can’t see Dany’s fleet and all 3 dragons surviving this season, she’s way to OP.

      Yeah, she is when just considering facing the men fighting for Cersei and Euron. However, if there IS a need to face off against the NK’s replenishing undead army they’re going to need everything she has to even have a chance.

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    35. Clob,

      True enough, if there are 3 dragons in the world vs NK battle though I hope the WW have their own ice dragon. Otherwise, still pretty OP.

      Just dig a big ditch, put some shields behind said ditch and watch the zombies fall in. Eventually it will fill but hey you have dragons to burn everyone in there.

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    36. Mihnea,

      Nice to see you commenting! You’ve been away a long time.

      Dee Stark,

      I have yet to see it. The reviews are pretty good though, I plan to see it soon . HBO really needs this show to do well.

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    37. ghost of winterfell,

      Yeah I heard that HBO needs another GOT big show or its going to tank….
      But why?? they never had a show as big as GOT before but managed to survive… is it because of Netflix for example… making their own shows and things like that?

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    38. Dee Stark:
      Yeah I heard that HBO needs another GOT big show or its going to tank….
      But why?? they never had a show as big as GOT before but managed to survive… is it because of Netflix for example… making their own shows and things like that?

      The Sopranos rivalled Game of Thrones (domestically, at least; I don’t think it was nearly as big internationally), but setting that aside, HBO needs a new big hit because it needs new series to function as a subscriber draw when GOT is gone, and they’ve had some big failures recently that cost a lot of money (Vinyl has been called the most expensive failure in TV history in some quarters, though I don’t know if that’s true). The network isn’t in danger of failing (that’s hyperbolic), but its other current shows, even the acclaimed comedies, are mostly niche products at this point. They don’t want to go backwards.

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    39. Dee Stark,

      They had Sopranos, Sex and the City and other hits, which weren’t very expensive to make. The problems are financial and there’s also huge competition from Netflix, FX, and so on.

      They gambled and wasted $100 million on season 1 of Vinyl and it tanked (for comparison, GoT didn’t even have that kind of budget in its first couple of seasons). Now they allegedly spent the same amount of money on Westworld, so they really need this hit. Because of the financial hit they got from Vinyl they scrapped a promising Steve McQueen miniseries. They’ve also scrapped shows produced by David Fincher, Tom Hanks, and Brad Pitt (who have a good track record producing-wise).

      It’s one mistake after another.

      http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/hbos-100m-vinyl-disappoints-westworld-868605

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    40. Dee Stark,

      Basically what Sean C said.
      Streaming services like Netflix have changed the game. Other networks like FX have pulled their game up in a big way. Expensive and big ticket failures like Vinyl and TD S2 were a dent to its reputation. There have been other programmes which were commissioned, then cancelled.
      At such a time, they need a show which assures them that their subscribers (a big portion of whom are in this purely for GOT) don’t cancel their subscriptions once the show ends. Shows like Silicon Valley and Veep weren’t enough to ensure this. Hopefully Westworld will make a difference.

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    41. Dee Stark,

      I honestly don’t even know who they were targeting with Vinyl. Certainly not GoT subscribers lol. Westworld seems like something GoT fans would be interested in, but it’s not as escapist as GoT, it doesn’t have GoT’s built in fanbase, and I don’t see it selling a ton of merchandise.

      Wiki says they had $60 million for season 1. I don’t know if the promotion they did for the show is a part of this.

      http://gameofthrones.wikia.com/wiki/Season_1

      Though take note that they were initially supposed to film the battle Tyrion was in in season 1, but couldn’t because they didn’t have the budget. Clearly they are no longer as constrained now.

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    42. Flayed Potatoes,

      thank you for this!!!

      yeah I know… from GOT to vinyl.. that’s huge.
      Completely agree on Westworld vs GOT as well.

      60 million? for season 1? Vs 100 million for season 6?? I would have thought it would have been much less for season 1

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    43. Dee Stark,

      It certainly doesn’t look that expensive. That’s why I’m wondering if marketing costs were also included. Or maybe they spent a lot of money on actually building the sets for the first time.

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    44. ghost of winterfell:
      Dee Stark</strong
      Other networks like FX have pulled their game up in a big way. Expensive and big ticket failures like Vinyl and TD S2 were a dent to its reputation. There have been other programmes which were commissioned, then cancelled.
      At such a time, they need a show which assures them that their subscribers (a big portion of whom are in this purely for GOT) don’t cancel their subscriptions once the show ends.

      HBO is going to be kicking itself big-time for pulling out of the American Gods deal if it turns out to be a huge hit for Starz. There’s a lot of crossover between GRRM’s fanbase and Neil Gaiman’s. Had they been willing to cede a little more creative control to the author, as Starz is doing, they could’ve worked things out and strengthened their fantasy audience base for the long haul.

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    45. Inga,
      Hi again *still waving*. There is one last thing about the In Production teaser I forgot to mention.

      The bit you thought was a cloak being dipped in water with a green reflection on it is intriguing me. Whatever is being dipped looks woven, like clothes, but the ‘material’ has me stumped. The best way I can describe it is like fine straw – if it is for wearing it would be really scratchy and uncomfortable. The only item of clothing I remember seeing which is any way comparable is the potato sack type outfit the High Sparrow had, like the religious hairshirt. Presumably most of the Faith Militant were killed along with him, but he did have lots of followers among the ordinary citizens of Westeros. If it is a sign for S7 perhaps it’s to do with what’s left of the sparrows, or maybe the Brotherhood Without Banners who have similar ideas but with different God(s)?

      As for Westworld, I liked the first episode and had forgotten it was HBO until I found myself thinking “oh look, gratuitous boobs” then I remembered 😉

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    46. Lulus Mum,

      Hi (waving back)!

      That material indeed looks like a sack (I noticed that). It can be used for sacks and/or other packaging, but it can be also used for making wicks/torches, especially if pre-soaked with oil or melted wax or similar. You can see that the material is attached and wrapped around some (wooden?) beam, and that greenish glow of the liquid the material is immersed into may simply hint that it is supposed to be flammable creating associations with wildfire (in reality they wouldn’t work with flammables that way). So, I take it is a hint that some highly flammable constructions will be built and used: for instance, Euron and Cersey may be using branders (fire-ships and/or fire-wagons), etc. But the association with the sparrows is also possible and acceptable. With all that build-up since S2, KL should revolt against Cersey bursting out from within, rather than be taken by a foreign army, and I do believe that the remaining sparrows or septons will play a role in that.

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    47. Sean C.: What does Cersei have that would pose any kind of challenge to Dany?

      Anybody seeking to challenge Daenerys needs magic capable of challenging her dragons.

      She has Qyburn. Maybe his experiments at the Citadel included some magic… anyway, I’m sure he’ll have ideas for her on how to combat the dragons.

      Cersai is at her most evil when she’s cornered, so, it’s a dangerous time for all her opponents.

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