HBO to Trump: Quit using Game of Thrones without permission
President Trump tweeted a Game of Thrones reference to warn about sanctions — and HBO and stars Maisie Williams and Sophie Turner aren’t pleased.
In a graphic that co-opted the HBO hit’s famous marketing tagline and poster font, Trump tweeted on Friday, “Sanctions Are Coming”:
The tweet appears to be in reference to Trump reinstating sanctions against Iran that were lifted under President Obama’s 2015 nuclear deal. Obama has long said the deal prevents Iran from developing nuclear weapons. GoT used “Winter is coming” as its debut season tagline in 2011, and that particular golden font was debuted in posters for the show’s second season.
EW has obtained a statement from HBO in response: “We were not aware of this messaging and would prefer our trademark not be misappropriated for political purposes.”
Williams also weighed in on Twitter with a perfect reply: “Not today,” invoking Arya Stark’s famous lesson from swordmaster Syrio Forel on what we say to death.
Turner, who plays Sansa Stark, simply wrote: “Ew.”
HBO’s social team likewise got in on this:
The National Iranian-American Council, an organization that seeks to promote better U.S.-Iran relations, had a GoT-referencing response as well: “Donald Trump is a literal White Walker, fear-mongering, war-mongering, and championing division at every opportunity for political gain.”
Previously, A Game of Thrones author George R.R. Martin said Trump reminds him of the tale’s immature and sadistic teen villain Joffrey Baratheon.
“I think Joffrey is now the king in America,” Martin said last year. “And he’s grown up just as petulant and irrational as he was when he was 13 in the books.”
Martin also tweeted a graphic Friday at Trump that said “Fear cuts deeper than swords, vote Tuesday the 6th,” but like the president, it also used the GoT typeface for political purposes and was deleted.
While star Kit Harington (Jon Snow) has slammed Trump by saying: “I believe in experts … Mr. Donald Trump — I wouldn’t call him ‘President,’ I’ll call him ‘Mister.’ I think this man at the head of your country is a con artist.”
EW was on the GoT set on Election Day in 2016, and one of the show’s writers at the time objected to the popular Joffrey comparison. “People keep writing that his election is ‘just like Game of Thrones.’ F— you. Even Joffrey spoke in articulate sentences. I prefer Westeros, where politics makes sense.”
The Trump tweet comes on the heels of EW revealing a cover story Thursday going exclusively behind the scenes of the ultra-secretive eighth and final season. You can read the story, “The End of Game of Thrones,” in its entirety here.