‘Game of Thrones’ Casts Ciarán Hinds As Mance Rayder in Season 3

Published 3 years ago by

ciaran hinds game thrones Game of Thrones Casts Ciarán Hinds As Mance Rayder in Season 3

The Seven Kingdoms are becoming even more massive and sprawling in season 3 of HBO’s Game of Thrones. Several important “players” join “the game” next year, but perhaps the most pivotal (certainly, one of the more powerful) character roles has remained unfilled – that of Mance Rayder, leader of the Free Folk north of the Wall, and self-proclaimed “King-Beyond-the-Wall.”

Reports are in that Rayder’s throne will be occupied by Irish character actor Ciarán Hinds, who previously appeared on HBO’s Rome TV series as Gaius Julius Caesar. Hinds has more recently shown up in supporting capacity in such films as The Debt, The Rite, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, The Woman in Black, Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance, and John Carter (as Tardos Mors, the “Red King of Mars”).

EW confirms that Hinds has secured the role of Mance Rayder in Game of Thrones Season 3. The actor joins fellow Rome alum Tobias Menzies, along with numerous other series newcomers who were introduced via a video montage during the Game of Thrones Comic-Con 2012 panel (click on that link to watch said clip).

The character, Mance Rayder, was born a Wildling before he was handed over and raised by the Night Watch as a child. He eventually become an admired ranger, but grew tired of the Order’s customs and traditions – leading him to abandon his post and seek refuge with the Wildlings beyond the Wall. Many years later, Rayder re-emerged as a heralded warrior who had successfully united most of the Wildling tribes under his command, despite being an ordinary-looking man with a broad chest and long, greying hair (as described by series creator, George R.R. Martin).







Game of Thrones viewers may recall numerous off-hand references to Mance throughout the first two seasons, from such characters as Alliser Thorne (Owen Teale) and Osha (Natalia Tena). The most overt mention of his name was during the season two finale, with Jon Snow (Kit Harington) being escorted to meet the Wildlings’ king – after convincing his captors that he is a traitor to the Watch’s cause by slaying his fellow prisoner/comrade Qhorin Halfhand (Simon Armstrong).

Jon Snow in Game of Thrones Season 2 Game of Thrones Casts Ciarán Hinds As Mance Rayder in Season 3

Jon Snow meets the 'King-Beyond-the-Wall' in 'Game of Thrones' S3

Rumors about who would portray Mance Rayder in Game of Thrones S3 have been circulating for a while, with fans pushing for such actors as James Purefoy (another Rome alum), Ray Stevenson (Thor), and Tony Curran (The Pillars of the Earth) – in addition to Hinds and Mads Mikkelsen, the latter of which headlines this fall’s new Hannibal TV series. Most of these stars already have other projects taking up their time, but that didn’t stop die-hard GoT followers from showing their support.

Hinds is arguably the weakest physical-fit for the role out of that list of fan-backed candidates (though, there are surely others); not to mention, he has more experience at portraying regal figures who favor brains-over-brawn, whereas Rayder is someone who calls for equal amounts of the two qualities. Nonetheless, Hinds has excellent dramatic chops – and, as it turns out, there’s long been a significant (if small) portion of the GoT fanbase pushing for him to snag the role.

Do you like the casting of Hinds as Mance Rayder? Let us know in the comments section.

Games of Thrones Season 3 begins airing on HBO on March 31st, 2013.


Source: EW

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  1. Ehh. He doesn’t look anything like I would imagine Mance to. I hope he turns out to be a good choice.

    • Agreed. Then again he looks nothing like Caesar either. Great actor though.

    • The picture is him playing caesar from the series Rome.

  2. he is an extremely accomplished character actor. i think hell do great

    • Agreed. If anyone can do it, he can.

      I just found out, his name is pronounced KEER-an. I always wondered.

      I have noticed that pretty much every character in the series appears older than they are in the book. Obviously, the part of Daenerys had to be played by an adult, but I am speaking more-so of the rest of the cast.

  3. I would have preferred James Purefoy to be Mance, but there is no denying Ciaran’s acting ability. I think he will do a very good job.

    I honestly can’t wait for these next two seasons, I just finished book 3 and it was simply amazing.

    • I agree that James Purefoy seems like a much more natural choice, but I also have faith in Ciaran Hinds.

  4. Oh, man. He’s been so good in so many things and ends up in THIS! Wish him well, but it’s a shame.

  5. Thor needs to take note on Game of thrones. This is how you do a fantasy epic.

  6. I love it. He’s a great actor and will most definitely deliver. Next season is shaping up to be amazing. I just hope they edit the episodes the best they can because there are so many storylines coming up, it’s going to be difficult.

    • Loc,

      From what I’ve been hearing/reading they are splitting book 3 into two seasons. If this is the case I think 20 episodes should be enough to cover everything and satisfy the fans of the book and show.

      • That’s really good to hear. But i have also herd that Season 3 was gonna diverge the most from the books

  7. LOVE Ciaran Hinds in anything, so I am thrilled he’ll be in “Game of Thrones’!!

  8. Im in!!

  9. Just finished reading Clash of Kings, simply awesome. Arya kicks butt!!!! Sansa booo!!!

  10. I hope he can sing and play a lute….

    • @tundrabeast

      Hey, watch John Carter, you’ll be REALLY confused, lol. They actually had 4 actors from Rome in that movie, it was weird. And James Purefoy and Ciaran Hinds are two of them. There were several scenes with those two standing together in the same frame. I kept thinking it was Mark Antony and Caesar together again, lol.

  11. I saw the pic and got excited that there’s something Rome related…Oh well…

  12. He’s a great actor, and that’s what’s important. Not how I imagined Mance, but I like that they’re continuing to get established actors involved.

  13. I don’t usually comment on sites like this but I have to tell all of you that THIS is the most intelligent choice HBO ever made (even over filming G.O.T.). THIS man is a consummate and masterful actor. He’s played everything from Caesar to a politician that makes Bill Clinton look like a choir boy! I know, he doesn’t resemble Mance in any form you can think of, but he WILL win your over. Trust me. This was an excellent choice!