(Warning: This article contains spoilers for “Game of Thrones” Season 8)
“Game of Thrones” fans are well aware that many of the show’s characters meet a bloody end. But at least one popular character — who died in the eighth and final season — was originally slated to live.
“For a long time, we wanted Ser Jorah to be there at The Wall in the end. The three coming out of the tunnel would be Jon (Kit Harington) and Jorah (Iain Glen) and Tormund (Kristofer Hivju). But the amount to the logic we’d have to bend to get Jorah up to The Wall and get him to leave Dany’s side right before [the events in the finale] … there’s no way to do that blithely,” Hill said. “And Jorah should have the noble death he craves defending the woman he loves.”
During the third episode in the eighth season — “The Long Night” — Jorah dies defending Emilia Clarke’s character Daenerys Targaryen against an army of White Walkers. As fans know, Daenerys takes a more violent path after Jorah's death, later setting King's Landing ablaze with her dragon and killing thousands of innocent people.
Glen, speaking to Entertainment Weekly, said he's glad his character never learned what became of Daenerys.
“There’s a sweetness in that because Jorah will never know what she did,” he said. “That’s probably best. It’s a blessing for him that he never found out what happened to her. And from a pragmatic story point of view, his death served a greater purpose. Where could we have taken Jorah from there? F— if I know.”
Glen also told the publication in a separate interview that Jorah’s end was “the right conclusion.”
“It’s a heroic and satisfying demise. I think [showrunners David Benioff and Dan Weiss] were sweetly nervous about everyone’s reaction and their instinct is you’ll be upset that you’re out,” he said. “So the first thing I did is I went and emailed them and told them how much I loved the scripts. And they said, ‘Aw, you’re a gent.’ And I said, ‘No, I’m really grateful for this conclusion.’”
On a similar note, Maisie Williams, who played Arya Stark, recently revealed who she wished her character had assassinated in the final season.
“I wanted Arya to kill Cersei even if it means [Arya] dies, too. Even up to the point when Cersei’s with Jaime (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) I thought [while reading the script], ‘He’s going to whip off his face [and reveal its Arya]’ and they’re both going to die. I thought that’s what Arya’s drive has been,” she told Entertainment Weekly, in part.