We’ve been eagerly anticipating every episode of Game of Thrones since it first debuted on HBO six seasons ago. However, you might not realize all of the amazing actors that narrowly missed out on bringing the iconic characters of Westeros to life. From some icky feelings about incest to a disastrous original un-aired pilot. Here are 9 actors who were almost cast in Game of Thrones.
Jennifer Ehle as Catelyn Stark
Tamzin Merchant as Daenerys Targaryen
actress Tamzin Merchant
was another victim of the original GoT
pilot. Though it's hard to imagine anyone other than Emilia Clarke
as the Mother of Dragons, Marchant originally had the role. All of that changed when the entire pilot was redone. Since then, Merchant has gone on to slay on WGN America
Dominic West as Mance Rayder
When it came time to cast the Wildlings beyond the Wall, who better to embody Mance Rayder than The Wire
alum Dominic West
? West told Digital Spy
that he had been offered a part in Game Of Thrones
(rumored to be the part of Wildling Chief Mance Rayder). However, West turned down the role because he was not too enthused about filming in Reykjavik, Iceland for six-months. He stated, "My problem is, I've got four kids, and at the moment, I'm reluctant to be away from home for a long time." All worked out in the end, West is now on Showtime
's smash success The Affair
and Ciarán Hinds
snagged the role of Mance.
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Sam Heughan as Loras Tyrell
Can you imagine Outlander
hottie, Sam Heughan
as poor Loras Tyrell? When GoT
was casting, Heughan auditioned for the roles of Loras and Renly Baratheon an exhausting seven times. However, the roles ultimately went to Finn Jones
and Gethin Anthony
respectively. This all worked in our favor, because Heughan now stars in another major show, STARZ
as the hunky Scottish dreamboat Jamie Fraser. We must say, we're much happier with him in this particular role.
Lily Allen as Yara Greyjoy
's real-life brother Alfie Allen
plays Theon Greyjoy on Game of Thrones
, so it seemed only natural for the GoT
showrunners to consider casting Lily Allen in the role of Theon's sister, Yara Greyjoy. However, after reading the scene where Theon feels up Yara on horseback, Lily was horrified. She went on to say there was just way too much incest going on for her to feel comfortable accepting the role. We don't blame her at all if this really was the case. However, Alfie went on to tell Vulture,
that his big sis made the whole thing up. We're just not sure what to think about all of this.
Danny Dyer as Pyper
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Sam Claflin as Jon Snow
Literally no one else could play the former Lord Commander Jon Snow like the delicious Kit Harington
. However, Me Before You
hunk Sam Claflin
actually tried out for both the Bastard of Winterfell, and Daenerys's evil ass brother Viserys Targaryen, Though Claflin failed to get either role, he did grab the role of The Hunger Games
champion Finnick Odair; not too shabby if you ask us.
Gillian Anderson as Cersei Lannister
Can you imagine The X-Files
alum, Gillian Anderson
in the role of fallen queen Cersei Lannister? After all, Lena Headey
is literal perfection in the role. Still, we have to admit that Anderson would have certainly added her own flair to the iconic character.
Izzy Meikle-Small as Sansa Stark
English actress Izzy Meikle-Small
is best known for her roles in the film Never Let Me Go
and for the television series Ripper Street.
However, when it came down for HBO to cast the role of Sansa Stark for Game of Thrones
, Meikle-Small and Sophie Turner
were neck in neck. Ultimately, Turner booked the role and we've known her as the eldest Stark daughter ever since.