Game of Thrones Series 04 Overview


The fourth season of the fantasy drama television series Game of Thrones premiered in the United States on HBO on 06 April 2014, and concluded on 15 June 2014.

It was broadcast on Sunday at 9:00 pm in the US, consisting of 10 episodes, each running approximately 50-60 minutes.

The season is adapted primarily from the second half of A Storm of Swords, along with elements of A Feast for Crows and A Dance with Dragons, all novels from the A Song of Ice and Fire series by George R. R. Martin. The series is adapted for television by David Benioff and D. B. Weiss.

HBO ordered the fourth season on 02 April 2013, which began filming in July 2013. The season was filmed primarily in Ireland, Northern Ireland and Croatia.

Game of Thrones features a large ensemble cast, including Peter Dinklage, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Lena Headey, Emilia Clarke and Kit Harington. The season introduced a number of new cast members, including Pedro Pascal, Indira Varma, Michiel Huisman and Dean-Charles Chapman.

Critics praised the show’s production values and cast, with specific accolades for Dinklage’s portrayal of Tyrion Lannister. Viewership yet again rose compared to the previous season. It won 4 of the 19 Emmy Awards for which it was nominated.


The story takes place in a fictional world, primarily upon a continent called Westeros, with one storyline occurring on another continent to the east, Essos.

After the death of Robb Stark at The Red Wedding, all three remaining kings in Westeros believe they have a claim to the Iron Throne.

King Joffrey is killed by poison at his wedding, and his uncle Tyrion is blamed; young Tommen Baratheon is crowned king. Meanwhile, Sansa Stark escapes King’s Landing.

At the Wall, Jon Snow and the Night’s Watch, badly outnumbered, begin a grim battle against 100,000 Wildlings, but Stannis’s army sweeps in to demand the Wildlings’ surrender.

Bran Stark’s visions lead him far beyond the Wall to the north, where he meets the Three-Eyed Raven.

Daenerys Targaryen captures Meereen and decides to rule as queen of Slaver’s Bay until she can permanently defeat the slavers; she finds ruling more difficult than conquering. She reluctantly chains up her growing dragons, who have become difficult to control.

Arya Stark crisscrosses Westeros accompanied by the Hound, but sails alone to Braavos on Essos to end the season.


  • Main Cast:
    • Peter Dinklage as Tyrion Lannister.
    • Nikolaj Coster-Waldau as Jaime Lannister.
    • Lena Headey as Cersei Lannister.
    • Emilia Clarke as Daenerys Targaryen.
    • Kit Harington as Jon Snow.
    • Charles Dance as Tywin Lannister.
    • Natalie Dormer as Margaery Tyrell.
    • Jack Gleeson as Joffrey Baratheon.
    • Sophie Turner as Sansa Stark.
    • Maisie Williams as Arya Stark.
    • John Bradley as Samwell Tarly.
    • Rose Leslie as Ygritte.
    • Kristofer Hivju as Tormund Giantsbane.
    • Rory McCann as Sandor “The Hound” Clegane.
    • Gwendoline Christie as Brienne of Tarth.
    • Jerome Flynn as Bronn.
    • Sibel Kekilli as Shae.
    • Iain Glen as Jorah Mormont.
    • Liam Cunningham as Davos Seaworth.
    • Stephen Dillane as Stannis Baratheon.
    • Carice van Houten as Melisandre.
    • Alfie Allen as Theon Greyjoy/”Reek”.
    • Isaac Hempstead Wright as Bran Stark.
    • Iwan Rheon as Ramsay Snow/Ramsay Bolton.
    • Conleth Hill as Varys.
    • Aidan Gillen as Petyr “Littlefinger” Baelish.
    • Hannah Murray as Gilly.
  • Guest Cast:
    • The recurring actors listed here are those who appeared in season 04.
    • They are listed by the region in which they first appear.
    • At and Beyond the Wall:
      • Owen Teale as Alliser Thorne.
      • Peter Vaughan as Maester Aemon.
      • Brian Fortune as Othell Yarwyck.
      • Dominic Carter as Janos Slynt.
      • Ben Crompton as Eddison Tollett.
      • Noah Taylor as Locke.
      • Mark Stanley as Grenn.
      • Josef Altin as Pypar.
      • Luke Barnes as Rast.
      • Burn Gorman as Karl Tanner.
      • Brenock O’Connor as Olly.
      • Lu Corfield as the Mole’s Town madam.
      • Lois Winstone as a Mole’s Town prostitute.
      • Ciarán Hinds as Mance Rayder.
      • Yuri Kolokolnikov as Styr.
      • Ian Whyte as Dongo.
      • Joseph Gatt as a Thenn warg.
      • Deirdre Monaghan as Morag.
      • Jane McGrath as Sissy.
      • Thomas Brodie-Sangster as Jojen Reed.
      • Ellie Kendrick as Meera Reed.
      • Kristian Nairn as Hodor.
      • Struan Rodger as the Three-Eyed Raven.
      • Octavia Alexandru as Leaf.
      • Richard Brake as the Night King.
      • Ross Mullan as White Walkers.
    • In the North:
      • Michael McElhatton as Roose Bolton.
      • Elizabeth Webster as Walda Bolton.
      • Gemma Whelan as Yara Greyjoy.
      • Charlotte Hope as Myranda.
    • In the Vale:
      • Lino Facioli as Robin Arryn.
      • Kate Dickie as Lysa Arryn.
      • Rupert Vansittart as Yohn Royce.
      • Alisdair Simpson as Donnel Waynwood.
    • In King’s Landing:
      • Dean-Charles Chapman as Tommen Baratheon.
      • Julian Glover as Grand Maester Pycelle.
      • Roger Ashton-Griffiths as Mace Tyrell.
      • Finn Jones as Loras Tyrell.
      • Diana Rigg as Olenna Tyrell.
      • Pedro Pascal as Oberyn Martell.
      • Indira Varma as Ellaria Sand.
      • Ian Beattie as Meryn Trant.
      • Hafþór Júlíus Björnsson as Gregor Clegane.
      • Daniel Portman as Podrick Payne.
      • Tony Way as Dontos Hollard.
      • Paul Bentley as the High Septon.
      • Anton Lesser as Qyburn.
      • Will Tudor as Olyvar.
      • Josephine Gillan as Marei.
      • Pixie Le Knot as Kayla.
    • On Dragonstone:
      • Tara Fitzgerald as Selyse Florent.
      • Kerry Ingram as Shireen Baratheon.
    • In the Riverlands:
      • Gary Oliver as Ternesio Terys.
      • Andy Kellegher as Polliver.
      • Andy Beckwith as Rorge.
      • Gerard Jordan as Biter.
      • Ben Hawkey as Hot Pie.
    • In Braavos:
      • Mark Gatiss as Tycho Nestoris.
      • Lucian Msamati as Salladhor Saan.
      • Sarine Sofair as Lhara.
    • In Slaver’s Bay:
      • Michiel Huisman as Daario Naharis.
      • Ian McElhinney as Barristan Selmy.
      • Nathalie Emmanuel as Missandei.
      • Jacob Anderson as Grey Worm.
      • Joel Fry as Hizdahr zo Loraq.
      • Reece Noi as Mossador.


On 02 April 2013, HBO announced it had renewed the series for a fourth season, to consist of 10 episodes.


David Benioff and D.B. Weiss serve as main writers and showrunners for the fourth season. They co-wrote seven out of ten episodes. The remaining three episodes were written by Bryan Cogman (two episodes), and the author of A Song of Ice and Fire, George R.R. Martin (one episode).

Benioff and Weiss co-directed the season premiere after making their directorial debut in season 03, although only Weiss is credited as Benioff received credit for their previous directed episode; Alex Graves, who directed two episodes in season 03, returned and directed episodes 02, 03, 08 and 10; Michelle MacLaren, who also directed two episodes in season 3, returned to direct episodes 04 and 05; former series cinematographer Alik Sakharov, who directed in seasons 02 and 03, returned to direct episodes 06 and 07; and Neil Marshall directed episode 09 after previously directing “Blackwater“, the ninth episode of season 02.


The fourth season adds previously recurring actors Gwendoline Christie (Brienne of Tarth), Iwan Rheon (Ramsay Snow), Kristofer Hivju (Tormund Giantsbane) and Hannah Murray (Gilly) to the series’ main cast. Iain Glen’s credit is moved last in the rotation and given the “With” moniker.

Prince Oberyn Martell, nicknamed “The Red Viper”, is played by Chilean-American actor Pedro Pascal. “This was a tough one”, said showrunners David Benioff and Dan Weiss about the casting. “The Red Viper is sexy and charming, yet believably dangerous; intensely likable, yet driven by hate. The boys love him, the girls love him, and he loves them all back. Unless your last name is Lannister. We found a fellow who can handle the job description and make it seem effortless. He wasn’t easy to find and he won’t be easy to stop”. Martin commented on the casting by saying: “I wasn’t present for Pedro Pascal’s audition, but I understand that he really killed it with his reading. And since his casting was announced, the producer of another TV show on which he appeared recently has written me to say how terrific Pascal is, and to congratulate us on the casting. So I suspect that he will turn out to be a wonderful Red Viper”. Actress Indira Varma was cast as Ellaria Sand, Prince Oberyn’s paramour.

Roger Ashton-Griffiths joins the cast in the role of Mace Tyrell. “The lord oaf of Highgarden”, as his mother describes him, is otherwise known as father to Margaery and Loras. His casting was confirmed by George R.R. Martin, who introduced the actor as the solution to a riddle he had set fans with the following message, “Yes, it’s the fine British character actor Roger Ashton-Griffiths, who has been cast in the role of Mace Tyrell, son to the Queen of Thorns, and father of Loras and Margaery”.

Mark Gatiss plays Tycho Nestoris, a representative of the Iron Bank of Braavos, to whom the Iron Throne owes millions in borrowed gold. The role of Hizdahr zo Loraq is played by young British actor Joel Fry. Hizdahr is the young scion of an ancient Meereenese family who crosses paths with Daenerys Targaryen in Meereen. Elizabeth Webster was cast as Fat Walda Frey. Walda Frey is a granddaughter of Lord Walder Frey. She is the new wife of Roose Bolton, the Lord of the Dreadfort. During the wedding feast of Edmure Tully and Roslin Frey, Lord Bolton recounts to Catelyn Stark and Ser Brynden “Blackfish” Tully how Lord Walder Frey proposed him to marry one of his granddaughters and offered her weight in silver as dowry. Lord Bolton then adds he chose the fattest bride available and she has made him very rich.

Paola Dionisotti and Rupert Vansittart were cast as Lady Anya Waynwood and Bronze Yohn Royce. They are the heads of House Waynwood and House Royce of Runestone: two powerful vassal houses of House Arryn. Yuri Kolokolnikov plays Styr: One of Mance Rayder’s lieutenants and the Magnar – the name of the first ever Lord of Thenn which is now a title – of the Thenn people, a wildling clan. Two mysterious characters from Bran’s storyline have also been cast: the Three-Eyed Crow, who is played by Struan Rodger, and a Child of the Forest, played by Octavia Alexandru.

Roles that were recast for season 04 include Michiel Huisman as Daario Naharis. Huisman replaces Ed Skrein, who portrayed the character in season 03. Dean-Charles Chapman plays the role of Tommen Baratheon, King Joffrey’s younger brother. Tommen was played by Callum Wharry in seasons 01 and 02. Chapman appeared as Martyn Lannister in two episodes of season 03 (“Walk of Punishment” (S03E03) and “Kissed by Fire” (S03E05)). Hafþór Júlíus Björnsson was cast as Ser Gregor Clegane, called “The Mountain”. Hafþór replaces Ian Whyte, who portrayed the character in season 02.

After an absence of at least a season, Owen Teale returns as Alliser Thorne, Kate Dickie as Lysa Arryn, Dominic Carter as Janos Slynt, Tony Way as Dontos Hollard, Andy Beckwith as Rorge, Gerard Jordan as Biter, Andy Kellegher as Polliver, Lino Facioli as Robin Arryn and Brian Fortune as Othell Yarwyck.


Filming for the season began on 08 July 2013, in Northern Ireland. The series also returned to Iceland and Dubrovnik for filming. New locations in Croatia include Diocletian’s Palace in Split, Klis Fortress north of Split, Perun quarry east of Split, Mosor mountain, and Baška Voda further down to the south. In the commentary for episode 02, “The Lion and the Rose,” the showrunners revealed that parts of Joffrey’s death scene had been filmed in California. The Thingvellir National Park in Iceland was used as the location for the fight between Brienne and The Hound.

Filming for the season lasted 136 days and was completed on 21 November 2013.


The Icelandic post-rock band Sigur Rós appears in the second episode, as a group of musicians serenading the royal couple at their wedding reception with “The Rains of Castamere.” This continues the series’s tradition of employing noted indie bands, begun in season 02 with The National and continued in season 03 with The Hold Steady.

The soundtrack for the season was released digitally on 10 June 2014, and on CD on 01 July 2014.


The fourth season was met with near universal acclaim from critics, and is often cited as the best season of the series.


Season 04 obtained the strongest viewer numbers of all seasons aired up until that point, with a series high of 7.20 million viewers of the first airing of the seventh episode. With its fourth season, Game of Thrones has become the most-watched HBO series in history (surpassing the fourth season of The Sopranos which had a gross audience of 18.2 million viewers), averaging 18.4 million viewers across multiple platforms, including live viewing, encores, DVR views, HBO GO and On Demand views.


For the 30th TCA Awards, the series was nominated for Outstanding Achievement in Drama and Programme of the Year. For the 4th Critics’ Choice Television Awards, the series was nominated for Best Drama Series and Diana Rigg received a nomination for Best Guest Performer in a Drama Series. For the 66th Primetime Emmy Awards, the series received 19 nominations, including Outstanding Drama Series, Peter Dinklage for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series, Lena Headey for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series, Diana Rigg for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series, David Benioff and D. B. Weiss for Outstanding Writing for a Drama Series for “The Children”, and Neil Marshall for Outstanding Directing for a Drama Series for “The Watchers on the Wall”. For the 67th Writers Guild of America Awards, the series was nominated for Best Drama Series and George R.R. Martin was nominated for Best Episodic Drama for “The Lion and the Rose”. For the 21st Screen Actors Guild Awards, the cast was nominated for Best Drama Ensemble, Peter Dinklage was nominated for Best Drama Actor, and the series won for Best Stunt Team. For the 72nd Golden Globe Awards, the series was nominated for Best Television Series – Drama. For the 67th Directors Guild of America Awards, Alex Graves was nominated for Outstanding Directing – Drama Series for the episode “The Children”.


Between 30 January and 05 February 2015, the last two episodes of season four were shown in 205 IMAX theatres in the US. Game of Thrones is the first TV series released in this format. The show earned $686,000 in its opening day at the box office and $1.5 million during its opening weekend. The one-week release grossed $1,896,092.

Game of Thrones Series

You can find an overview of the Game of Thrones franchise here.

You can find a full index of the Game of Thrones TV Series here.

Production & Filming Details

  • Director(s): Daniel Minahan, David Benioff, Neil Marshall, Alex Graves, Alik Sakharov, and Michelle McLaren.
  • Writer(s): David Benioff, D.B. Weiss, Bryan Cogman, and George R.R. Martin.
  • Release Date: 06 April 2014 to 15 June 2014.
  • Running time: 50-60 minutes (approximate, per episode).
  • Rating: 15/18 (depends on season).
  • Country: US.
  • Language: English.

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