George Lucas secretly visited the Game of Thrones season 8 set
Star Wars creator George Lucas stopped by the ultra-secretive set in Belfast during the production of the final season and met with showrunners David Benioff and Dan Weiss.
According to GoT actors interviewed during EW’s set visit last spring, the sci-fi visionary toured the sets and chatted with producers. Lucas’ visit was a couple months before Disney announced that Benioff and Weiss would write a potential new Star Wars trilogy.
“It’s funny because George came here and talked to the boys, and the one thing the Star Wars franchise has been missing lately is decent storytelling,” opined GoT actor Liam Cunningham, who plays Davos Seaworth. “There’s a lot of brilliant stuff in Star Wars, it’s an epic franchise, but occasionally, story-wise, it’s left a little to be desired. Dan and David are brilliant at surprises and can transfer the demographic from this show to that [franchise]. They’re incredible at adapting a world and making it their own and they could add a layer of complexity to it. I’d love it if they gave me some words to say, though I’d probably just be in a helmet.”
The GoT showrunners declined to confirm or comment on Lucas’ visit, or describe the contents of their Star Wars script. There have been online rumors that Benioff and Weiss’ project could be set during the Knights of the Old Republic era, which is 4,000 years before the rise of the Galactic Empire, but that is very much unconfirmed.
The showrunners did, however, trade some jokes about their exciting new gig…
“We feel we’re not quite hated enough already by people we don’t know,” Weiss quipped about the potential for Star Wars fandom backlash.
“Our Captain Phasma origin story is going to blow people away,” Benioff added, referring to the Star Wars character played by GoT‘s own Gwendoline Christie.
“It’s going to be Gwen’s monologue in the suit…” Weiss added.
“The slowest [camera] push-in in movie history into her mask…”
The duo previously told EW that talking to the Star Wars team helped give them ideas for keeping the secrets of their HBO hit’s final season more secure. “They’ve given us a lot of hints about how to lock things down, things we never would have thought of or didn’t know were possible,” Weiss said.
In EW’s recent cover story, GoT director Miguel Sapochnik also referenced Star Wars when making a comparison between the production of the show’s final season — with its heavy investment in sprawling practical sets and laborious outdoor filming in difficult conditions — to the style of most modern action films.
“We built this massive new part of Winterfell and originally thought, ‘We’ll film this part here and this part there,’ and basically broke it down into so many pieces it would be shot like a Marvel movie, with never any flow or improvisation,” Sapochnik says. “Even on Star Wars, they build certain parts of the set and then add huge elements of green screen. And that makes sense. There’s an efficiency to that. But I turned to the producers and said, ‘I don’t want to do 11 weeks of night shoots and no one else does. But if we don’t we’re going to lose what makes Game of Thrones cool and that is that it feels real.’” And so the showrunners agreed to film the final season under a rather brutal schedule to enhance the realism of what fans will see on screen.
GoT returns April 14. EW.com will have daily GoT coverage until the end of Game of Thrones, including post-episode recaps and interviews. Follow @jameshibberd for GoT scoop. Bookmark our Game of Thrones content hub.
Get your copy of Entertainment Weekly’s biggest Game of Thrones issue ever: 78 pages of exclusive stories and photos on the past, present, and future of the HBO hit. Buy your choice of 16 different covers, and don’t forget to subscribe for more exclusive interviews and photos, only in EW.
Game of Thrones
HBO's epic fantasy drama based on George R.R. Martin's novel series 'A Song of Ice and Fire.'