GAME OF THRONES: Season 4 Visual Effects Reel Reminds Us that Westeros Isn’t Real

by     Posted 113 days ago

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The characters fighting for Westeros in Game of Thrones are fighting mostly for CGI backdrops.  Like many others TV series and movies, visual effects is a huge part of the production process as it handles details both great and small.  A great credit to Game of Thrones is that the story is so good that we forget about the effects, and another great credit goes to the VFX team because their work is seamless.  If you want to see the seams, you have to get a visual breakdown of how the shots are put together.

Hit the jump to get a Game of Thrones VFX breakdown for season 4, and remember that every time you see a castle on the show, it’s probably made of pixels.  Also, in case you haven’t read it, click here for Steve’s interview with director Alex Graves about the season four finale.

Maisie Williams Talks HEATSTROKE, Working with Hyenas, GAME OF THRONES, Wanting to Go to Comic-Con, and More

by     Posted 118 days ago

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In the dramatic thriller Heatstroke, a family trip in the African desert veers drastically off course when a research scientist (Stephen Dorff), his girlfriend (Svetlana Metkina) and his teenage daughter (Maisie Williams) come face-to-face with a group of dangerous arms dealers.  They face the ultimate test of survival, as they attempt to evade the killers and stay alive until they can make it back home.

During this exclusive phone interview with Collider, 16-year-old actress Maisie Williams (who turned in a terrific performance as Jo O’Malley, when she was just 14) talked about being drawn to strong female characters, not having to audition for the role, what she related to with Jo, what a great time she had shooting in South Africa, and the experience of getting to work with hyenas.  She also talked about being a part of the most-watched show in the history of HBO, as Arya Stark on Game of Thrones, when she realized that the show was getting to that next level in popularity, turning the page on who Arya used to be and becoming a much colder character, her favorite director to work with, and just how much she wants to go to Comic-Con in San Diego.  Check out what she had to say after the jump.

GAME OF THRONES Season 5 May Omit Stoneheart Character Entirely

by     Posted 127 days ago

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Most Game of Thrones fans know of the online furor that arose after the credits rolled on the show’s fourth season finale.  For book readers, there had been an omission: a character who makes an appearance in A Storm of Swords’ Epilogue.  From there, there was much discussion back and forth within the fandom and in a variety of media outlets over whether the omission was a good thing, to the point of whether the character should be eliminated from the storytelling altogether.  Hit the jump for a recent interview that could clear some of this speculation up, but warning, there will be MAJOR book spoilers about who the character is.

THE COLLISION: Episode 94 – GAME OF THRONES: Looking Back at Season 4

by     Posted 129 days ago

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This week on The Collision, we’re joined by Allison Keene and Charles Judson to talk about the fourth season of Game of Thrones.  During our conversation, we talk about the season’s highs, lows, the benefits of departing from the book, what made “The Children” the best season finale thus far, the future of the series, and much more.  As always, we finish up with our recommendations.

Click here to listen to the new episode of The Collision, click here for the previous episode (“22 Jump Street and How to Train Your Dragon 2“), click here to add the podcast to your RSS, and click here to find us on iTunes. To keep up to date with The Collision, you can follow us on Twitter at @MattGoldberg and @AdamChitwood.

GAME OF THRONES Director Alex Graves Talks Season 4 Finale, His Biggest Fears Going into the Season, the Mountain/Oberyn Fight, and More

by     Posted 134 days ago

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Like the rest of the planet, I’m completely smitten with HBO’s Game of Thrones.  Over the course of the first four seasons, the show has broken every conventional rule about what a TV show can do, and has grown in popularity every year.  While we’re only half way through the seven seasons that showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss are aiming for, if they keep the quality at the current level, Game of Thrones will go down as one of the best shows of all time.

Last Sunday, right after the season four finale aired, I got on the phone with director Game of Thrones director Alex Graves.  We talked about directing a lot of the big deaths over the course of the season (he directed four episodes this season), why the finale was a longer episode, deleted scenes, the VFX, his thoughts on fan reactions to the events of the season, directing “The Mountain and the Viper” (episode eight) and the brutal fight at the end of the episode, how he’ll be back for Game of Thrones season six, and a lot more.  Hit the jump for what he had to say about Game of Thrones season four.

GAME OF THRONES Power Rankings: Who Rules Westeros Now?

by     Posted 136 days ago

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Game of Thrones‘ fourth season ended with a great finale that left most of the major characters at turning points.  It also concluded (most) of the stories told in the exceptional book A Storm of Swords, which provided so many twists and turns (and so many deaths).  Now that the dust has settled though, it’s time to take a look at where things left off: Game of Thrones‘ macro structure has always been about power, and the struggle for it (or away from it) defines the series’ action.  Hit the jump for where the major Houses fall into line after “The Children,” and who is the most likely to sit upon the Iron Throne next year (there no book spoilers!)

21 GAME OF THRONES Season 4 Finale Images

by     Posted 136 days ago

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HBO’s most popular TV series of all time, Game of Thrones, closed out its fourth season last night with almost certainly the show’s best finale yet.  Though traditionally the fantasy drama series has used its finales as a sort of denouement from the previous episode’s shocking events, last night’s episode packed a multitude of surprises, thrills, and emotion into a wholly satisfying 66 minutes.  Though we still have a while to wait before the show returns for season five, HBO has released a large gallery of images from last night’s episode for your perusing pleasure.  If you’re itching for a closer look at some of the more strange or impactful moments from the episode, these stills should be sufficient.

Hit the jump to check out the Game of Thrones season 4 finale images, and if you missed Allison’s recap of the episode, click here.

GAME OF THRONES Showrunners D.B Weiss and David Benioff Talk about Tonight’s Season Finale and Plans for Season 5

by     Posted 137 days ago

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I’m eager to see tomorrow’s ratings for tonight’s terrific Game of Thrones season finale.  Game of Thrones is the highest-rated show in HBO’s history, and season four did not disappoint.  It came with the various twists, turns, and major deaths we’ve come to expect, and, as always, I was surprised by who lived and who died.  Following tonight’s episode, showrunners D.B. Weiss and David Benioff talked about this season, the season finale, and what lies ahead for season five.

Hit the jump for more on Game of Thrones season 5, and click here to read Allison’s recap for the season finale.  [SPOILERS AHEAD for those who haven't seen the finale plus some minor spoilers from the books]

GAME OF THRONES Season 4 Finale Recap: “The Children”

by     Posted 137 days ago

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With “The Children,” Game of Thrones delivered one of its most cinematic and epic hours yet (and also spent a mint on their CGI budget for this episode, surely).  Unlike other premieres and finales, the show didn’t touch on every story line, and that was a very good thing.  When Game of Thrones restricts itself to just telling a few narratives well, it’s a much, much better show.  “The Children” also ran for a slightly extended length of time, which the series (and this episode in particular) desperately needed.  And for once, Game of Thrones chose to end its season in a place of contemplation, rather than shock and awe.  Hit the jump for more.

Djimon Hounsou and Kit Harington Talk HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON 2, GAME OF THRONES, GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY, and More

by     Posted 139 days ago

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How to Train Your Dragon was not only a great and highly entertaining film that did huge worldwide box office numbers, but it was one of the best uses of 3D that I’ve seen in the cinema.  Needless to day, I was excited to see the sequel, How to Train Your Dragon 2, and it did not disappoint.  Five years have passed since the heroic young Viking Hiccup (Jay Baruchel) befriended a dragon named Toothless that led the residents of Berk to live side-by-side in peace with the fire-breathers.  Hiccup now has the respect of his father, Stoick the Vast (Gerard Butler), the love of his girlfriend Astrid (America Ferrera) and has discovered his long-lost mother (Cate Blanchett), but the power-hungry Drago Bludvist (Djimon Hounsou) is threatening everything.  For more on the film, read Matt’s review.

At the recent L.A. press day, Collider had the opportunity to chat with Djimon Hounsou and Kit Harington, who are both new to the popular franchise.  During the exclusive interview, they talked about what makes their more villainous characters the hero of their own story, and how much the film changed from what they were first told to what we see on screen.  Kit Harington also talked about what it’s like to be a part of Game of Thrones, which recently became the most watched show in HBO’s history, while Djimon Hounsou talked about what fans can get excited about with Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy, which he hasn’t actually seen yet.  Watch the video after the jump.

Watch: 3 GAME OF THRONES Featurettes Go Behind the Scenes of Last Night’s Episode “The Watchers on the Wall”

by     Posted 143 days ago

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Many count the season two episode “Blackwater” as the high point for Game of Thrones.  It’s a departure for the series in that it takes place exclusively in one location during a finite amount of time, and director Neil Marshall executes the titular battle in grand fashion with a wonderful emphasis on small character moments.  The series did a bit of a callback to “Blackwater” with last night’s episode “The Watchers on the Wall”, once again bringing Marshall back to direct and focusing on one specific battle for the duration of its runtime.  The result wasn’t quite as impactful as “Blackwater” (Jon Snow and the Night’s Watch aren’t near as interesting as Tyrion, Joffrey, The Hound, etc.), but the episode was damn entertaining, and now HBO has released a trio of featurettes that take fans behind the scenes of how the penultimate episode of season four came together.

Hit the jump to watch the Game of Thrones featurettes for “The Watchers on the Wall”, and click here to read Allison’s recap of the episode.  The season four finale of Game of Thrones airs next Sunday on HBO.

GAME OF THRONES Recap: “The Watchers on the Wall”

by     Posted 144 days ago

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Like in “Blackwater,” which chronicled the massive Battle of Blackwater Bay, Game of Thrones allowed “The Watchers on the Wall” (also directed by Neil Marshall) to exclusively focus on a battle.  It also topped “Blackwater” in terms of expense, but did the show do enough to build up the Night’s Watch’s story to make it resonate emotionally as well as visually?  Hit the jump for why “when you’re nothing at all, there’s no more reason to be afraid.”

GAME OF THRONES Recap: “The Mountain and the Viper”

by     Posted 151 days ago

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To quote Time‘s TV critic James Poniewozik, “said it before, but for all the spectacle, Game Of Thrones is never better than when it’s about one person talking to another.”  Amen.  The last ten minutes were brutal, and next week teases an epic battle between the Wildlings and the watchers on the Wall, but one thing that this season of Game of Thrones has done so well is bring the show down a notch, and return it to the essence of what makes the books so compelling: characters.  (And scheming, of course).  But by focusing on only a few stories each week, Game of Thrones has made things simple while keeping it twisted.  “The Mountain and the Viper’s” finale had a big impact, but perhaps even more shocking was the transformation of another character.  Hit the jump for more.

Peter Dinklage Talks X-MEN: DAYS OF FUTURE PAST, the Great Cast of Actors, Script Changes During Production, Comic-Con, and More

by     Posted 162 days ago

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Opening this weekend is director Bryan Singer’s X-Men: Days of Future Past.  As most of you know, Days of Future Past finds Wolverine (Hugh Jackman) having his consciousness sent back to 1973 in order to help Professor X (James McAvoy), Magneto (Michael Fassbender), and the rest of the X-Men: First Class crew stop the rise of the Sentinels, giant robots programmed to exterminate mutants.  The film also takes place in the future, so we’re going to see the original X-Men cast and what will happen if Wolverine fails.  I caught a screening last week and am very happy to report the film is great.  It’s loaded with awesome character moments and tons of mutant action.  You’re all going to love it.  For more on the film, watch these five clips and nine minutes of behind-the-scenes footage, and click here for all of our coverage.

At the New York City press day, I landed a video interview with Peter Dinklage.  He talked about immediately saying yes when he was offered the role, how the film is filled with great actors, script changes during production, his experience at last year’s Comic-Con promoting X-Men and Game of Thrones, and more.  Hit the jump to watch.

GAME OF THRONES Recap: “Mockingbird”

by     Posted 165 days ago

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I’m filling in for Allison this week, and to quote Oberyn, “I will be your champion!” Okay, probably not so much, but I will be going through this unusual episode of Game of Thrones [side note: I haven’t read the books].  When I watch Game of Thrones, I expect horrible things to happen, and so this episode threw me for a loop because it was primarily people being nice to each other.  Granted, the specter of death looms large (as always), but as our characters peer into the abyss, it’s a bonding experience…for the most part.  Hit the jump for why “a bit of comfort never hurt anyone.”

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