David Benioff, Dan Weiss (showrunners), Lena Headey (Cersei), Natalie Dormer (Margaery), Eugene Michael Simon (Lancel), Jonathan Pryce (High Sparrow), Miguel Sapochnik (director), Bryan Cogman and Dave Hill (producers) reflect on King’s Landing storyline from Game of Thrones season 6 finale. You can watch the video above or read the below provided transcript.
Benioff: When you blow up a huge number of cast members in a single moment, you don’t want it to be completely random. It feels like it’s gotta be earned and feel like it’s gotta be something that belongs to the world.
Weiss: At this point in the story we try to introduce as few new elements as possible. You’re trying to play with the pieces that we’ve got on the board and realizing that the wildfire was something that we had.
Benioff: Going back to earlier seasons and then going back to the books, we have known for quite sometime that the Mad King had planted caches of wildfire throughout the city and when Jaime is telling Brienne the story of the last moments of the Mad King, he tells her that wildfire was planted below major boulevards and he actually says below the Sept of Baelor.
Headey: I just couldn’t have seen all of that. I knew there was revenge to be had obviously from last year but I just, I was, I’m still like ‘this is crazy’.
Simon: I got a phone call from Dan and David and they said ‘hey dude’ and that was enough. I knew right then and there.
Sapochnik: It’s like a slow burn. You basically start the sequence with a whole different bunch of people with a whole different bunch of expectations as they get ready for one day and they go to work and then work becomes something completely different.
Weiss: Each one of the images was very carefully designed and to flow into the next image that followed it. It’s such a powerful way into this scenario. One that really shies away from giving away what’s gonna happen.
Dormer: Margaery has carved a career out of occasionally being one step ahead and occasionally one step behind Cersie. And the two ladies have battled quite evenly for this time and what we obviously find out is that Margaery’s demise in being beaten was not her fault. It’s down to the High Sparrow underestimating Cersei.
Pryce: He’s just become over-confident that what he’s doing is in the forefront of his mind and he doesn’t really suspect that anyone’s gonna undermine him.
Sapochnik: The ultimate dramatic moment in that sequence is when Margaery turns to High Sparrow. You end up on a big close up on Jonathan Pryce’s face, who’s so expressive and can say so many things with so little and you can see just see just the second before the whole place blows up that he goes ‘Oh Shit’.
Headey: It’s like this pure enjoyment of wiping out all of them.
Cogman: She has a plan and she executes that plan flawlessly apart from one major wrinkle. (However) The very person she wanted to protect most in the world is lost as a direct result of her actions.
Hill: What we were trying to do in the scene is showing something dying inside her. The prophecy is coming true. She’s seen all of her children die. Though, the thing that kept her going for so long is gone.
Cogman: She’s been through so much and she’s so hardened that she’s not even capable of mourning him. The next step is that she’s gonna take that Throne.
Headey: Now you have this woman who.. I don’t know if it’s crazed, I think it’s just empty, which is probably more dangerous.
Hill: She finally gets her heart’s desire- The Iron Throne. At the same time, she’s lost almost everything she cared about to get it. And there’s a look between her and Jaime, which is enigmatic and which hints that Season 7 drama to unfold but she is at the end of season 6, colder and stronger and the queen of Seven Kingdoms.
Benioff: It’s tough you know it’s like the red wedding. It’s tough to say Goodbye to a lot of actors that we’ve been working with for quite some time. Whether the ones that we have been with since season 2 or you know Jonathan Pryce, just came to us last year, but has become one of our favorite actors so quickly.
Pryce: I hope it’s not a waste that I’ve learned all five hundred names of everybody I work with. This is a great great production to be involved with.
Lancel: It’s been very personal.. which the best ones are I think. So I’ll miss Lancel. I will miss him a lot.
Dormer: Once you’ve been a part of the circus and the madness and the joy that is Thrones, you are always the member of the family. The rose has been uprooted.