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Gwendoline Christie Says Game of Thrones Is About to Get Really Intense

 
ELLE – According the new Game of Thrones trailer, “The great war is here.” Well, not quite—the HBO show won’t return until July 16. Luckily, we ran into Gwendoline Christie at the Cannes Film Festival, and she gave us a few tidbits to keep us going.

 

“Season seven is where things really start to heat up,” Christie said, “and you start to see unlikely combinations, unlikely attitudes, and unlikely acts.” She also confessed she’s having a hard time with the show coming to an end sometime soon. “I’m not really dealing with it,” she said, laughing. “I mean, we all know with GoT that, each season, part of the fun is you don’t know what characters are going to live or die.” We sure hope she isn’t hinting that our beloved warrior Brienne of Tarth might get the hatchet.

 

The actress also confirmed that there will be another season after this one, so there’s hope she’ll last long enough for that. “I believe there will be an eighth season,” she said, “and what I will say is I have loved the experience of working on that show…I’ve made some wonderful friendships out of it, so hopefully I’ll be able to keep those.”

 

Christie is in Cannes to promote her new show, the second season of Top of the Lake, which costars Elisabeth Moss, as detective Robin Griffin, and Nicole Kidman. The first season was set in New Zealand, but this time around the action has moved to Sydney, and there’s a whole new mystery to solve. Christie plays Griffin’s police partner, Miranda, who is nothing like the immovable, confident Brienne of GoT or Christie’s Star Wars character, Captain Phasma. Instead, Miranda’s a slightly unhinged fangirl type who seems a bit lost. “She’s struggling with everything,” Christie said. “She’s struggling with life, and not being very good at anything at all, and that interested me.”
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Unlike Us, Gwendoline Is Okay Not Knowing If Brienne Lives Or Dies On Game Of Thrones

 

REFINERY29 – With a role in Star Wars: The Last Jedi and Top of the Lake: China Girl (alongside Elisabeth Moss and Nicole Kidman), Gwendoline Christie definitely has a career beyond her iconic role as Brienne of Tarth on HBO’s Game of Thrones — but that doesn’t mean she still isn’t totally crushed over the ending of the series. With only two (brief) seasons between us and the end, Christie shares our heartbroken sentiments, telling Elle.com, “I’m not really dealing with it,” while at Cannes Film Festival promoting Top of the Lake.

 

But beyond her not coming to terms with the show wrapping (tbh, same), she sounds pretty chill with the idea of Brienne dying, citing the mystery as part of the fun. “I mean we all know with GoT that, each season, part of the fun is you don’t know what characters are going to live or die.” She elaborated: “Season seven is where things really start to hot up, and you start to see unlikely combinations, unlikely attitudes, and unlikely acts.”

 
“What I will say is I have loved the experience of working on that show,” she continued, “I’ve made some wonderful friendships out of it, so hopefully I’ll be able to keep those.”

 

In addition to her everlasting friendships, the actress hopes that her empowering character will be a model for future female roles. “What I’m thrilled about from GoT is that people have connected with me – all sorts of people – and said, ‘I love your character and I feel some of her in me.’ Male, female, whatever shape, size, anything they might be.”

Star Wars: The Last Jedi, the Definitive Preview

VANITY FAIR – Star Wars devotees who can’t wait for December need look no further. With exclusive access to writer-director Rian Johnson, plus interviews with Mark Hamill, Daisy Ridley, and others, V.F. presents the ultimate sneak peek at The Last Jedi—and Carrie Fisher’s lasting legacy.

 

I. “We’re Going Back?”

 

The first trip to Skellig Michael was wondrous: an hour-long boat ride to a craggy, green island off the coast of Ireland’s County Kerry, and then a hike up hundreds of stone steps to a scenic cliff where, a thousand years earlier, medieval Christian monks had paced and prayed. This is where Mark Hamill reprised his role as Luke Skywalker for the first time since 1983, standing opposite Daisy Ridley, whose character, Rey, was the protagonist of The Force Awakens, J. J. Abrams’s resumption of George Lucas’s Star Wars movie saga. The opening sentence of the film’s scrolling-text “crawl,” a hallmark of the series, was “Luke Skywalker has vanished.” Atop Skellig Michael, at the picture’s very end, after an arduous journey by Rey, came the big payoff: a cloaked, solitary figure unhooding himself to reveal an older, bearded Luke, who wordlessly, inscrutably regarded the tremulous Rey as she presented to him the lightsaber he had lost (along with his right hand) in a long-ago duel with Darth Vader, his father turned adversary. It was movie magic: a scene that, though filmed in 2014 and presented in theaters in 2015, is already etched in cinematic history.

 

The second trip to Skellig Michael? Maybe less of a thrill for an aging Jedi. Contrary to what one might have reasonably expected, that Abrams would have kept rolling in ’14, recording some dialogue between Luke and Rey in order to get a jump on the saga’s next installment—especially given that Skellig Michael is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, with access limited to the summer months, and only when the weather is cooperative—once Hamill and Ridley had nailed their epic staredown, that was a wrap. It fell to Abrams’s successor, Rian Johnson, the director of The Last Jedi, the eighth movie in the saga, which opens this December, to painstakingly re-stage the clifftop scene, with the two actors retaking their places more than a year later.

 

“When I read the script for Episode VIII, I went, ‘Oh my God, we’re going back?’ Because I said I was never going back,” Hamill told me when I sat down with him recently at his home in Malibu. He wondered, in vain, if they could drop him in by chopper this time, “which is so clueless of me, because there’s no landing pad, and it would mar the beauty of it all,” he said. Hamill is a youthful 65 but a sexagenarian nevertheless; whereas the fit young members of the crew were given 45 minutes to get up to the now iconic Rey-Luke meeting spot—carrying heavy equipment—Hamill was allotted an hour and a half, “and I had to stop every 10, 15 minutes to rest.”

 

None of this was offered up in the form of complaint. Hamill just happens to be a rambling, expansive talker—in his own way, as endearingly offbeat a character as his friend and on-screen twin sister, Carrie Fisher, who passed away suddenly and tragically last December. Like Fisher, Hamill was put on a diet-and-exercise regimen after he was reconscripted into the Star Wars franchise. (Harrison Ford was under less obligation, having retained his leading-man shape because he never stopped being a leading man.) Over a spartan snack plate of carrot sticks and hummus, the man behind Luke held forth at length on this subject.

 

“You just cut out all the things you love,” he said. “Something as basic as bread and butter, which I used to start every meal with. Sugar. No more candy bars. No more stops at In-N-Out. It’s really just a general awareness, because in the old days I’d go, ‘Well, I’m not that hungry, but oh, here’s a box of Wheat Thins,’ and you don’t put the Wheat Thins in the same category as Lay’s potato chips, and yet I would sort of idly, absentmindedly eat these things while watching Turner Classic Movies, and ‘Oh, I ate the whole box!’ ”

 

Hamill had been dieting and training for 50 weeks before he learned, via the Episode VII script he finally received from Abrams, that he would not appear in the movie until its last scene, and in a nonspeaking part at that. On this, too, he has a lot of thoughts. Though he grants that the delayed-gratification reveal of Luke was a narrative masterstroke, he’d have done things differently if he’d had his druthers. Han Solo’s death scene, for example. Why couldn’t Luke have made his first appearance around then? In the finished film, the witnesses to Han’s death, at the hands of his own son, the brooding dark-side convert Kylo Ren (Adam Driver), are his longtime Wookiee co-pilot, Chewbacca, and the upstart Resistance fighters Rey and Finn (John Boyega).

 

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See the Cast of Star Wars: The Last Jedi on Four Exclusive Vanity Fair Covers

VANITY FAIR – As the Star Wars franchise prepares to celebrate its 40th anniversary this week, the next chapter in its saga will be very much front and center, thanks to a bountiful new shoot from the set of Episode VIII, The Last Jedi, by Annie Leibovitz for Vanity Fair. The relationship between Vanity Fair and Star Wars stretches back long ago and far, far away to when Leibovitz captured the cast of The Phantom Menace for the series’s return in 1999. The magazine has gone on to document each of the subsequent Star Wars episodes, including 2015’s blockbuster The Force Awakens.

 

Today, Vanity Fair debuts the cast of its follow-up, The Last Jedi, on four different covers, marking the first time we’ve released alternate Star Wars covers. Leibovitz’s full portfolio will be online Wednesday, along with our story on the making of the new film, written by David Kamp. The Summer issue of Vanity Fair will be on newsstands in New York and Los Angeles on June 1, and nationally on June 6. Readers in search of the full Vanity Fair-Star Wars experience, including all four covers, a commemorative poster, and early access, on May 24, to our digital editions, with lightsaber effects by Industrial Light & Magic, can purchase here.

 

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‘Game of Thrones’ Season 7: New Photos Preview the Next War for Westeros

HOLLYWOOD REPORTER – Good guys rarely win when playing the Game of Thrones, but perhaps they’re in for a reversal of fortune when winter resumes this summer.

 

At the very least, some forces of good are starting to align in brand-new photos from the seventh season of Game of Thrones. The photos, released Thursday by HBO, show Jon Snow (Kit Harington) and Daenerys Targaryen (Emilia Clarke) wearing new garb as they step into their respective roles as leaders — Jon being the King in the North, and Dany being the would-be Queen of the Seven Kingdoms. What’s more, Dany’s entire squad appears to be clad in similar attire, boasting a scale-like texture that resembles the ferocious dragons of House Targaryen.

 

Fashion updates aside, we’re really just at the tip of the iceberg as far as what’s revealed in the new photos. For instance, more Tormund (Kristofer Hivju) and Brienne (Gwendoline Christie) sharing screen time? And more Lyanna Mormont (Bella Ramsey), Lady of Bear Island? Nobody’s complaining about that.

 

As a reminder for people who haven’t checked in on Thrones since it ended its sixth season last summer, a quick refresher course: The denizens of the Seven Kingdoms are at a breaking point, especially the ones who live in King’s Landing. The season six finale featured Cersei Lannister (Lena Headey) enacting explosive vengeance on her worst enemies, leveling the Sept of Baelor and burning untold innocents alive with wildfire, purely to destroy a select few. Cersei’s final child, King Tommen (Dean-Charles Chapman), committed suicide shortly thereafter, leaving Cersei with a seat on the Iron Throne, and leaving her with the distinct taste of ash in her mouth.

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Star Wars: Captain Phasma comic and novel announced

FLICKERING MYTH – In more news coming out of Celebration, Lucasfilm has announced that Gwendoline Christie’s underused Star Wars: The Force Awakens villain Captain Phasma is set to take centre stage in her own comic book limited series and novel as part of the Journey to Star Wars: The Last Jedi publishing initiative.

 

 
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The “Activist” Reason For Gwendoline Christie’s Dramatic SAG Look

The Game of Thrones star’s entire outfit was a statement.

 

 

VANITY FAIR – When the stars descended on the SAG red carpet Sunday night, they did so in the shadow of massive nation-wide protests in reaction to the executive order banning people from certain countries from entering the U.S. It can be a surreal experience watching the actors talk about their projects inside a bubble that ignores incendiary headlines. Some performers, like Riz Ahmed and John Legend—who have both certainly been vocally political elsewhere—chose to keep the S.A.G. red carpet politics-free. “I’m not saving the world tonight,” Viola Davis told E! host Giuliana Rancic. But by striding down the red carpet in a shimmering, black, Vivienne Westwood jumpsuit, Game of Thrones star Gwendoline Christie was making a statement of her own citing Westwood’s “activist mindset” as the reason for their enduring partnership.

 

This isn’t the first time Christie has used that exact phrase. When she became the face of Westwood’s “Unisex” campaign in 2015, Christie said: “It is so relevant for Vivienne Westwood to re-assert their activist mind-set and create a collection that takes us beyond our current gender stereotypes with beauty and intelligence.” And while other women on the red carpet also wore accessories and even pants to make a statement, Christie’s fashion statement was the most eye-popping.

 

It’s the actress’s second major political statement this month: she tweeted in solidarity with the Women’s March. . .

 

 

And though she’s yet to use her social media to comment directly on the recent executive order, she retweeted a Desmond Tutu quote from Forest Whitaker urging unity over division. And Christie is every bit aware what kind of example her Game of Thrones character, Brienne of Tarth, sets in terms of breaking down the limits of gendered expectations. Usually she gets to do that good work in shining armor, but Sunday night she did it in shimmering sequins.

‘Game Of Thrones’: Season 8 Episode Count Still TBD

DEADLINE – Production is winding down on the upcoming seventh season of Game Of Thrones, which will debut in the summer. It will consist of seven episodes, three fewer than Seasons 1-6. That was by design as creators David Benioff and D.B. Weiss are plotting the blockbuster fantasy series’ final chapters.

 

They have revealed that GOT will end with Seasons 7 and 8. While Season 7’s episode count was set at seven last summer, before it went into production, the length of GOT’s final installment had been in flux. Benioff and Weiss had said that they were considering a 6-episode final season but that was not set in stone. As of now, there still is no a firm episode count.

 

“We are talking about it,’ HBO president of programming Casey Bloys told Deadline at TCA. There is no rush. Seasons 7 and 8 won’t be filmed back-to-back, so there is time to lock that in. While renewal for GOT has never been in doubt, it traditionally has been done around the previous season premiere.

‘Game of Thrones’: The Top 30 Characters, Ranked

 

THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER – With 60 episodes under its belt and counting, HBO’s Game of Thrones has produced an enormous amount of characters — some more successful than others, sure, but almost all of them distinct and memorable in their own right.

 

Indeed, the ensemble is so vast that you could anoint virtually any character as your personal favorite, and you wouldn’t be wrong. Is it nothing but Jon Snow (Kit Harington) in your forecast? No argument here. Do you forsake the old gods and the new, bowing before Daenerys Targaryen (Emilia Clarke) instead? Easy to see why! There’s no right or wrong way to prioritize affinity toward the heroes and villains of the HBO fantasy series — which is a helpful thing to keep in mind while considering how we have prioritized these characters.

 

With that out of the way, here’s how The Hollywood Reporter ranks the top 30 characters featured on Game of Thrones, through six seasons of the series:

 

 

8. Brienne of Tarth (Gwendoline Christie)

 

There are countless incredible images found all over the show, but Brienne charging into battle on horseback at the start of season six, rescuing Sansa (Sophie Turner) at just the right time, stands out as one of the most triumphant. Brienne the Beauty is often at the heart of some of the show’s best and most touching scenes, from bonding in the bath with Jaime, to the outright visceral awesomeness of her battle against the Hound, to her swift execution of Stannis Baratheon (Stephen Dillane) and beyond. Here’s to many more horse-and-sword battles to come.

The 11 Best ‘Game Of Thrones’ Couples

Ranked From Somewhat Adorable To Downright Lovable

 

BUSTLE – Game of Thrones may gravitate toward ruthless stabbings and the occasional beheading, but underneath all that bloodshed lies the heart of some truly epic love stories. Naturally, many of those said love stories tend to take a backseat due to all of the other tens of thousands of storylines going on, but they’re still there nonetheless and help to make the HBO series the hit success that it is. Granted, even the best Game of Thrones couples have faced their fair share of ups and downs, most of which have ended due to death or betrayal. But hey, when you live in an area like Westeros, that’s the risk everyone kinda has to take.

 

So who are these mystery duos, you may ask, who have pierced our hearts with their inspiring and, at times, intoxicating romances? I suppose everyone’s opinion on the matter would vary slightly, depending upon your tastes in TV love interests. But on the whole, there are certain Game of Thrones couples that inarguably reign supreme over all others, regardless of your own personal prejudices. No one on this show is perfect. Far from it, actually. However, certain couples manage to get pretty dark close. So without further adieu, here is my official ranking of the top 11 GoT couples, ranked from least to most.

 

4. Brienne Of Tarth & Tormund Giantsbane

 

 

So they aren’t an actual couple yet. SUE ME! It’s bound to happen and based on the chemistry we’ve seen between them already, it’s going to be amazing.

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