Cast members say goodbye to Game Of Thrones
Cast members of hit TV show Game Of Thrones share their feelings about the end of an era
After three years away from the set of Game Of Thrones, stepping back into the hit TV series was "weird" for Joe Dempsie, who plays King Robert Baratheon's illegitimate son Gendry.
The 31-year-old English actor, who reappeared for the seventh season in 2017, told The New Paper in a roundtable interview in February at the Corinthia Hotel in London: "It was a lot of the same people, surroundings,hotel rooms and sets. But then, there were little differences.
"We weren't given paper anything anymore and you had to sign for your sides (portions of the script) in the morning - all these kind of security measures that were never in place when I was last in on Season 3.
"Also, seeing how life had changed quite profoundly for a number of the cast as a result of being in the show... It is hard for Kit (Harington, who went from supporting actor to leading man as Jon Snow) to go and buy a bottle of milk from Tesco."
After all, Game Of Thrones has blown up a little bigger after every season until it morphed into the global pop culture phenomenon that it is now.
Its eighth and final season premieres on HBO (StarHub TV Ch 601/Singtel TV Ch 420) on April 15 at 9am, with a same-day encore at 10pm. It is also available on HBO Go and HBO On Demand.
Game Of Thrones: The Last Watch, a feature-length documentary on the making of Season 8, will also air on the same channels on May 27 at 9am, with a same day encore at 10pm.
Here, Dempsie and other supporting cast members - Jacob Anderson (Grey Worm), 28, Iain Glen (Ser Jorah Mormont), 57, John Bradley (Samwell Tarly), 30, Gemma Whelan (Yara Greyjoy), 37, Hannah Murray (Gilly), 29, and Jerome Flynn (Bronn), 56 - talk about saying goodbye to the series, what they miss most and the goings-on behind the scenes.
What was it like to film your last scene?
Whelan: The showrunners gave us a really beautiful send-off. We were given a little speech and a framed storyboard from a significant moment of our characters. It felt right and very sad and very celebratory. It was time to end, so it felt good.
Flynn: Sometimes you don't meet or act with some of the characters for years, if at all, and it just so happened that in my scene, I was acting with some of these guys for the first time. So there was a newness to that. It was quite surreal and very sweet.
Dempsie: Crying, apparently, was how I reacted. It had been this subconscious thing in the back of your mind... so you have not really addressed the fact that it is ending until the moment that it does, and then you are totally unprepared for it when it happens.
With a note of caution, there were a couple of actors who wrapped and it was really emotional, the whole speeches thing, and then two days later they get a call saying, "Yeah, can you come back in?". So you don't want to go too big on your exit, in case you are needed like a week later for something they had forgotten.
Anderson: The person that I was having to look at on my last day... We joked about messing it up on purpose so we don't have to finish, it doesn't have to end. But then we ended up actually messing it up because we were starting to cry.
What will you miss most about the series?
Anderson: As beautifully designed as my costume is, I'm so glad to see the back of it. You can't move in it. I'm going to miss the exact combination of people that I see in the morning when I get my hair cut, my make-up done.
Glen: In terms of having an association with it as actors and people knowing who you are through it... I think there are going to be touring shows, I think there will be museums set up in Belfast and some of the sets we have always worked at. It's a side of Thrones we will never be able to shed and I'm very happy with that.
What were the challenging moments on set?
Whelan: Breastfeeding in my Yara costume. It is very tricky.
Murray: There have been some physically challenging stuff with the cold and the fake snow that you breath in, and it is very unpleasant.
Bradley: There was a moment in Season 6 when we were in that carriage and I had the baby on my knee and every single line of that scene is re-recorded because the baby was just not happy. He had put his hands in my beard and I was like, "Oh, fine then, do that if you want", and then he slipped off my knee and was hanging onto my beard, really pulling my beard out. Those are moments when it takes a lot of composure to keep yourself together.
Are you happy with the ending?
Bradley: We had an ending that I was happy for people to see and proud of. People don't want to hurt, but they watch this show to get hurt, and they are going to get hurt again I'm afraid.