Gwendoline Christie, Lena Headey, Maisie Williams and Sophie Turner reunited recently to talk to Vogue about the final season, and how much of a challenge it was to shoot, as it took 10 months despite comprising only six episodes.
As we have read before, the season’s setpiece battle was a particularly grueling shoot of 55 nights in the cold mud followed by many more weeks of indoor filming: “All the training in the world couldn’t have prepared me for the amount of stamina you needed for these night shoots,” Williams says. “It gets to the point where it’s four o’clock in the morning and you’re looking around like, ‘This is ridiculous. What are we doing?'”
Physical exhaustion wasn’t the only repercussion: for her final scene as Sansa, Turner “couldn’t control herself”, she says. “I cried for hours and hours once it wrapped. It was like leaving behind a character that I’ve grown up with. It’s almost like a death.”
As difficult as it was, it was quite a journey, for actors and characters alike. Christie reflects on her role: “I do see Brienne of Tarth as a modern-day Joan of Arc.” When asked whether we’ll get to see her do more than fighting this season, such as establishing a romantic relationship, the actress is evasive yet somewhat encouraging: “What I will say is, I’m happy to see more of Brienne of Tarth the woman explored this season.”
For more about the role of women in Game of Thrones and how their characters smash through patriarchal structures both fictional and real, read the original article here.
At Men’s Health, Joe Dempsie briefly discusses season eight and looks back on Gendry’s journey and most iconic (and memetic) scenes, including what he calls the “incredibly pointless shirtless scene” in Harrenhal (I’m sure many of us would disagree with that assessment.) “Originally, when they told me about it, they justified it by saying, ‘So basically, he’s forging a sword, but it’s really hot—he’s in the blazing heat—so he’s got his shirt off.’ I don’t know if you’ve ever been to Belfast in November, but blazing heat has never existed in Belfast, full stop. Let alone in November. So we got there and it all felt a little bit silly. The broader idea is that it’s more a scene about Arya than Gendry. Arya getting to an age where she notices that kind of thing.” And oh boy, did she!
“A lot of the stuff that we’ve done in season 8—the scale of it has been unbelievable,” Dempsie tells Men’s Health. “It’s the kind of thing that makes you wonder, ‘I don’t know if I’ll ever work on something of this level again.’ And also, just the fact that you can turn to one of your colleagues in between takes, look at each other and say, without hyperbole or being ironic: ‘TV history, man; we’re in it, we’re making it.'”
Though the actor never had grand ‘endgame’ theories, he did wonder about his character: “I was the most curious as to what we might find out about Gendry’s parentage. Obviously, we know that he was the bastard of Robert Baratheon, but who might his mother have been?,” Dempsie wonders. “There’s a line in season one, and it’s a first scene you ever see of Gendry, where he’s looking to Ned and he’s asked about his mother, and he says he doesn’t remember much about her at all, other than the fact that she had yellow hair and she would sing to him. It’s one of those things where you go, ‘Do they usually write lines that don’t mean anything, or lines that seem to have significance that [are] never addressed again?’ I was kind of intrigued to see what that might mean, and what impact that might have on Gendry’s clout politically.”
Now, isn’t that interesting? Are we in for another parentage twist? Whether we are or not, do you believe Gendry will be legitimized and given lands? Will he live his life as a common smith? Something else entirely? Or will he die?! Tell us what you think below!
For more about Dempsie’s feelings on the ending, read the whole interview here.