We are a long way off from HBO's new Game of Thrones prequel House of the Dragon, but that has not stopped fans from getting excited. While the writing staff is reportedly breaking the stories and working on the scripts, fans online have compiled many lists of their dream casts for the series.
Fan-made cast lists are a popular pass-time online, particularly for genre-fiction adaptations. With a fantasy epic like George R.R. Martins A Song of Ice and Fire, there are dozens of characters to account for, and fans are hard at work filling the roles.
House of the Dragon is based on Martin's book Fire and Blood -- a fictional history set in the world of Westeros and narrated by a Maester. The book itself covers nearly 150 years' worth of Westerosi history in about 1,000 pages, but the show will zero in on one particular episode in this history: The Dance of the Dragons.
HBO really kept the House of The Dragon cast underwraps— 💙💜👑🦁👑💜💙 (@mystiqueenchant) December 26, 2019
Does that mean they're casting big names ?
The Dance is a civil war that ravaged Westeros about 180 years before the events of Game of Thrones. In it, the royal House Targaryen was divided between two potential heirs, and the country went to war to decide who would take the throne. The main contenders were Aegon II and Princess Rhaenyra. Naturally, each has a full cast of supporters and opponents, from all the familiar royal houses in Westeros.
That means plenty of characters to cast, and so far, HBO has not done so. On Wednesday, HBO's chief of programming, Casey Bloys told Variety that his "best guess" was that the series would air in 2022.
"They are in the room breaking story right now," he said. "My guess is we'll see it on the air in '22."
This may indicate that the show does not yet have a cast in place either. If it does, there have been no public announcements about it. There are no plans to begin filming either, though some of the locations have been announced.
Thankfully, fans are eager to do some of the work for them. Here are the top contenders on forums and social media's fan-made dream casts for House of the Dragon.
anyway cast her in house of the dragon https://t.co/Dz9SBChB5h— josie ʬ⁸⁴ (@emiliaheards) October 31, 2019
Charlize Theron was one of the first names proposed by fans when House of the Dragon was announced. Theron has done plenty of work in blond wigs and crowns, and she certainly has the intensity it would take to play a Targaryen. Fans have not rallied around one specific character for Theron, but she would be a good fit for Queen Rhaenyra, Queen Dowager Alicent Hightower or any other role she chose to pursue.
Jumping on fancasting roles, there's only one true choice to play Daemon "The Worst" Targaryen: Orlando Bloom pic.twitter.com/oI6TBedQSW— Joe Magician 🧙♂️ (@TheJoeMagician) November 6, 2019
Orlando Bloom is an easy choice for any fantasy adaptation, particularly one with blond-haired, blue-eyed, psueodo magical people in it. Bloom played the elf Legolas in the Lord of the Rings franchise, so we know he could pull off the Targaryen look.
There are plenty of middle-aged characters Bloom could play, including the arrogant Prince Daemon Targaryen, which seems to be fans' first choice for him. If needed, Bloom could even be aged down for flashbacks or early scenes, as he was in The Hobbit franchise.
who must i contact for casting katheryn winnick as visenya targaryen in house of the dragon pic.twitter.com/Vi7SRj3Z0c— osha (@oshawildling) October 30, 2019
There may not be any familiar faces from Game of Thrones on the prequel series, but other fantasy shows or historical series are not off limits. Many fans hope to see cast members from History's Vikings brought on-board, particularly Katheryn Winnick. Winnick has spent plenty of time in lavish gowns on-screen, often in the Targaryen family colors. She could play Rhaenyra, a member or her court, or even Johanna Lannister.
Actress Tati Gabrielle is a top contender for one of fans' favorite roles in The Dance of the Dragons -- Nettles. Nettles is a low-born girl who earns a place in the Targaryen court by taming a wild dragon named Sheepstealer and riding him into battle in service of Queen Rhaenyra. She is described with brown skin, black hair and brown eyes. Since there are so few roles for people of color in Westeros, fans are anxious to see who will take this one.
Other names proposed have include Naomi Scott, who played Jasmine in Disney's recent live-action remake of Aladdin.
thinking about the similarities between jeyne arryn and jo march. in this essay i will explain why saoirse ronan should be cast in the hotd show as jeyne arryn— visenya and sharra stan acc (@cindersansa) January 12, 2020
Saoirse Ronan is another clear choice for House Targaryen as a young blond rising star with classical features. However, as noted above, she could play other roles as well, including Jeyne Arryn -- the contemporary lady of the Vale.
While there are plenty of options for the kings and queens of the Dance of the Dragon, some fans are more focused on the background roles like Ser Criston Cole, a.k.a. "The Kingmaker." Cole was the Lord Commander of the Kingsguard that protected Queen Rhaenyra. Cole was an old war hero and tactician at the time of the Dance, so Mendelsohn would not have to a ton of fighting. Instead, he could focus on the menacing monologues he is known for.
House of the dragon era disso que eu precisava pic.twitter.com/PintavifUg— Fabiano Targaryen (@fabwiano) October 30, 2019
In addition to being blond and purple-eyed, Targaryens are known for being intimidating, so it makes sense that fans are calling for Lady Gaga to play one. The theatrical pop star could be any number of Targaryen women, especially after her Oscar-winning performance in A Star is Born last year.
Another character fans are dying to see cast in live action is Cregan Stark, the contemporary lord of House Stark during the Dance of the Dragons. However, many forums have proposed older actors for the role, such as Russell Crowe and even Sean Bean, who played Ned Stark in Game of Thrones.
In the book, Cregan is actually only a teenager when the Dance of the Dragons begins. In his climactic scene at the end of the war known as "The Hour of the Wolf," when he temporarily siezes control of King's Landing, he is just 21 years old. Therefore, I'm going to interject with my own pick here: Daniel Radcliffe.
Admittedly, Radcliffe is well over 21 years old himself, but he still looks young enough to pull it off. He also has the Stark features, from the strong jaw to the blue eyes. Obviously, Radcliffe has an established reputation in the world of fantasy adaptations, but in the last year he has been starring in TBS' Miracle Workers, proving that he is not opposed to working in the genre again. The role of Cregan Stark could be exactly the thing Radcliffe has been looking for to re-enter the world of genre without being typecast as a wide-eyed hero like Harry Potter.
Charlie Hunnam is on many fans' short lists for House of the Dragon casting, but they are split on what to give him. Hunnam's blond hair and blue eyes make him an easy choice for House Targaryen, and his strong build make him perfect for one of the warrior roles. These include Prince Daemon, Prince Aemond "One-Eye" Targaryen and other fearsome fighters.
Finally, fans are calling for Alexander Skarsgård to play the role of Dalton Greyjoy, "The Red Kraken." The bloodthirsty heir of House Greyjoy during the Dance has a pivotal role to play, and Skarsgard has proven his ability to be charming and menacing all at once, particularly on Castle Rock.
House of the Dragon is expected to air sometime in 2022 on HBO. Fire & Blood is available now wherever books are sold.