It may be almost spring, but winter is coming. Game of Thrones season 6 premieres April 24, and HBO has shared a new production video diary of the new season. The show has been shooting all over the place this season, including Belfast, Ireland and in a number of locations in Spain. (A particular shoot in a tower may prove to be a flashback to L+R=J, for those of you who’ve read the books.)
In the video, we hear from four camera operators (in the “dragon” and “wolf” units) who give us a look at what it’s like to film in some pretty crazy conditions. They have to contend with rain, snow and heat as well as those pesky prop guys throwing dust and sand in front of cameras to give the scenes extra realism. In between what is actually a fascinating look at what they go through, we get some tantalizing glimpses of what’s coming in season 6. As you know, this one is going to be largely “off book,” although it will include bits from A Dance With Dragons and A Feast for Crows, as well as parts of the upcoming book Winds of Winter, which many people doubt will ever hit the shelves.
We see Jamie Lannister (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) on the deck of the ship where (SPOILERS) he recently lost his daughter Myrcella (Nell Tiger Free) right after getting her back. It will be fascinating to see how this is going to affect his relationship with Cersei (Lena Headey). The last time they lost a child, there was that horrible sex scene in front of his corpse. (You remember; the one the director said was consensual, but that viewers considered rape.) Between the loss and learning what Cersei has been through with her prison sentence and the famous walk of shame, it might spur Jamie to action. Will he take on the High Sparrow? Will Cersei snap? She may have looked cowed during that walk, but there is no way that woman is going to fold, especially not after losing another child, and one she begged to keep. If you recall, she had a pretty magnificent speech a few seasons back about arranged marriage and what it does to women.
In another shot, Melissandre (Carice Van Houten) gives the camera her very best angry face. She’s lost her benefactor, Stannis, at the hands of Brienne of Tarth and all her plans have gone awry. Still, she’s proven that her powers are real and it’s likely that she’ll be the person to bring Jon Snow (Kit Harington) and his fabulous hair back from the dead. (Oh, come on. We know he’s back this season.) However, it’s not clear what her plan will be. Does she just need his blood? Will she use Jon to fight the Others? There was a pretty significant look between a certain ice king and Jon during the last big battle. It’s got to mean something.
We also get a glimpse of what appears to be the rumored Meereen/Dothraki battle, some of which takes place in front of a green screen. When we last saw Dany (Emilia Clarke), she and Drogon had been found by some Dothraki, and she looks pretty disheveled here. However, she may very well end up winning them over. Are the Meereen fighting to get their Queen back–she wasn’t very popular after some spectacularly bad decisions last season–or are the Dothraki getting revenge on them for the attack? Is Tyrion (Peter Dinklage), who we see briefly as well, leading the fight for her return? We’ve been waiting for those two to team up for a long time and the tiny bit of time they spent together in season 5 wasn’t enough.
We only get a quick peek at Arya (Maisie Williams) in the House of Black and White, standing over a body. She was struck blind at the end of last season for daring to take an identity for her own use. (Readers will know that the storyline showing her killing Ser Meryn was very close to a preview from the upcoming Winds of Winter.) All the pictures we’ve seen of her so far this season have shown her as still without sight. In the books, her blindness allows her to learn to detect lies and become a better liar herself, and that she eventually gets her sight back, becoming an acolyte. Since we’re going off book these days, it’s unclear if that will happen in the show.
We know from set pictures that Sansa (Sophie Turner) and Theon (Alfie Allen) survived the leap from its walls. House Baratheon is no more now that Selyse, Shireen and Stannis are dead. Will anyone take on the Boltons? Can they even claim Winterfell anymore, now that Sansa is gone?
Check out the video above, stills of major characters the gallery below, and make sure you catch up on all of our Game of Thrones predictions on Nerdist News![brightcove video_id=”4752923257001″ brightcove_account_id=”3653334524001″ brightcove_player_id=”2bfa565b-5412-4cfd-9211-6269880b8a5e”]