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George R.R. Martin Turned Down a Chance to Appear in Game of Thrones Season 8

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Whether we like it or not, Game of Thrones will end its run on HBO this summer. And knowing it’s the final season of the show, the producers asked the creator of Westeros to grace the series with his presence. He declined.

“[Executive producers] David [Benioff] and Dan [Weiss] invited me to a cameo in one of the final episodes, which I was tempted to do,” George R.R. Martin said to Entertainment Weekly. “But I didn’t think just for the sake of a cameo I could take the time to return to Belfast.”


While that may be disappointing on the surface, the reason why he didn’t want to travel all the way from New Mexico to Northern Ireland for a short cameo is a good one. He wanted to spend the time continuing to write The Winds of Winter, the highly anticipated sixth novel in the A Song of Ice and Fire series that inspired the show.

In the same interview, Martin also admitted he had filmed a cameo in the first season. He was a guest at the wedding between Daenerys Targaryen and Khal Drogo—but that was before Emilia Clarke was cast in the role, so the entire scene was reshot and his cameo was lost. (Tamzin Merchant was originally cast as Daenerys).


Even without the George R.R. Martin cameo, it’s safe to say we’re still very excited about Game of Thrones’ eighth and final season, which premieres April 14.

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