7 Actors Who Were Almost Cast on Game of Thrones
Game of Thrones, your number one entertainment priority this Summer, has become a huge hit on the strength of its incredible story and characters. But do you remember when the show launched on HBO — with nary a big star in sight? When Game of Thrones premiered in 2011, Sean Bean — aka the late, great Ned Stark — was arguably the biggest star in the cast. That's why it's kind of funny to consider how many now-recognizable actors actually auditioned for Game of Thrones, stars who have gone on to other shows and films with cult followings. Get ready to have your mind blown when you see who could have been part of the battle for the Iron Throne.
The Hunger Games franchise star, best known now as Finnick Odair, could have been Jon Snow or Viserys Targaryen. Claflin told CinemaBlend that he auditioned for the show, joking that all British actors "all auditoned for it."
Claflin's film commitments kept him from the show — but not from appearing with Game of Thrones stars. He starred alongside both Gwendoline Christie and Natalie Dormer in the Hunger Games movies, and last Summer, he played Emilia Clarke's love interest in Me Before You.
The star of critical hits like The Wire and The Affair nearly got a part on the show after it had begun its run. West told The Huffington Post that it was too much of a time commitment: "It was a lovely part, a good part. I'm going to regret it. My problem is, I've got four kids, and at the moment, I'm reluctant to be away from home for a long time. I can get a lot of work in London and still be at home." As for the part, West admitted that he didn't remember what it was.
The X-Files icon (who is American but grew up in Britain for a few years) admitted to The Daily Mail that she had turned down a role on Game of Thrones, though she has never mentioned what the role would have been.
Outlander's sexy Scot could have been one of Westeros's most eligible men. Heughan told Vulture that he auditioned for Game of Thrones a whopping seven times. "I auditioned for Renly, Loras, some of the members of the Night's Watch. And I'd always get so close! I'd be like, 'Guys, just give me a sword!'" Instead, he got a kilt for the Starz hit, and the rest is history.
Fifty Shades of Grey's Ehle got further than the audition stage — she actually starred in the original, never-aired pilot. She played Catelyn Stark but was replaced by Michelle Fairley when it was reshot.
Jamie Campbell Bower
He's no stranger to projects with big cult followings after appearing in the Twilight and Harry Potter franchises, and Campbell Bower almost ended up in one more. He was also in the original pilot as brother of the Night's Watch Ser Waymar Royce, who meets his end at the hands of the White Walkers.