You never know when your time might be up on "Game of Thrones," even after your contract is signed.
Alexander Siddig was cast as Prince Doran Martell in "Game of Thrones" Season 5, then Doran got killed in the Season 6 premiere. The Dorne leader's role is fairly large in George R.R. Martin's books -- certainly more prominent than what we saw on TV -- and it came as a shock to Siddig that his time on HBO was cut so short, especially when he was scheduled to be in more episodes of Season 6.
In an interview with StarTrek.com, the "Star Trek: Deep Space Nine" alum talked about joining the popular HBO show, and his character's unfortunate end.
"It's funny, I'm not really sure what happened there. I was contracted to do at least four episodes this season, but then I was in L.A. doing publicity for something else, and I got a call at the Chateau Marmont and there were familiar voices on the other end of the phone. It was one of those guys ["Game of Thrones" showrunners David Benioff and Dan Weiss], and because they didn't introduce themselves it was like, 'Hi, it's me.' I was like, 'Is that David or Daniel?' Anyway, they said, 'You know what this phone call is about.' I was like, 'Yeah, well, I guess I do.' 'So we were going to kill you off at the end of last season, but we decided that we're going to have to kill you off at the beginning of next season.' I was like, 'Okay, life goes on.'
But there was something wrong about that because I had been contracted for four episodes in the following season, so if they were going to kill me off at the end of the last season why would they contract me for those four episodes? Because it costs them money whether I do them or not, so it's not great business sense to do it just in case.
So something happened; I have no idea what. There was an enormous amount of fan excitement when I got named to be on the show, and everyone was like, 'Oh my god, yes, Doran Martell. He's going to be great as Doran Martell.' That might have been the kiss of death. Maybe they didn't want quite that much attention on that character. Maybe they thought, 'Well, let's prove that we're going to stray from the books. We're going to do something else, and he will be our first example of that.' So maybe that could have been the case. Or maybe I just screwed up. Maybe I said the wrong thing to the wrong person."
Maybe they just decided to scale back on all things Dorne because fans were not impressed by the Sand Snakes storyline in Season 5. The reporter joked that maybe Siddig was the one to leak the Season 5 episodes in advance of the premiere, ticking off HBO. But Siddig is a tinfoil-hat guy and said he's "almost positive that those four episodes were leaked by HBO themselves." That kind of conspiracy theory is worthy of its own TV series. Give Siddig the lead role, and sell it to FX!
There's a lot more to his interview, on GoT and other topics, so check it out.
[h/t: Watchers on the Wall]
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