Game of Thrones can be a pretty bleak affair. After all, it’s a show filled with magic that still manages to kill off major characters on a regular basis. The show films in remote location all over the globe, and its cast members are often sprawled across these locations. While the show is obviously a huge commitment for everyone involved, the cast manages to have plenty of fun together too, and sometimes, they document that fun for their massive fanbase.
Fans are always delighted to see the faces they know and love together outside the world of the show, and on a show like Game of Thrones, these photos give us an inside look at actors who rarely get to interact on screen. Now, with some of the show’s biggest players meeting and interacting for the first time, we get the chance to look back on the history of the cast’s close bond with one another, and wonder how many of them will get to stay on set as the show enters its home stretch.
Here are 15 Behind-The-Scenes Photos Every Game Of Thrones Fan NEEDS To See.
15 Conleth Hill's Photobomb
Conleth Hill appears to be fairly good at weaseling his way into photos, which is exactly what he did in the image above. Nathalie Emmanuel, the actor behind Daenerys’s translator and adviser Missandei, wanted to take a picture with Sophie Turner, but Hill wasn’t having it. Of course, his presence almost definitely adds to the already high quality of the photo. Turner and Emmanuel have yet to share the screen in the world of the show, so it’s a testament to the way the cast bonds that they’re posing for photos together anyway.
Turner and Emmanuel are clearly enacting a specific pose, with Emmanuel doing her best pout and Turner looking mischievous. Hill sort of ruins that tone with his tongue, but also breaks the tension a bit. Of course, all three actors are a little more fun-loving than their onscreen counterparts, which are a bit more subdued. Hill especially seems to relish the opportunity to be as silly as possible, which only makes us love him more.
14 A Drogo Throwback
Jason Momoa was only on Game of Thrones for a little while, but the show’s fans have treasured his limited appearance in the years since. As Khal Drogo, Momoa left his mark as a character who could have been one-dimensional in a lesser actor’s hands. Instead, Momoa made Drogo a fully fleshed out person, and someone who Daenerys genuinely loved. Although he didn’t make it through the show’s first season, Momoa has done alright since, landing the role of Aquaman in the DCEU.
In this throwback, Momoa is congratulating the cast on the season 4 finale with a picture of his time on the show. There’s tons to love in the picture, from Momoa’s clean-shaven look and top hat to Kit Harrington’s inability to figure out what he’s doing with his hands, even as he holds a cigarette in one of them. The picture really communicates the idea that Game of Thrones is a family, and long after you’re gone, you still feel like you’re a part of it.
13 Sibling Love
Theon Greyjoy may not have been able to save his sister from Euron, but that doesn’t mean he can’t hang out with her off screen. Alfie Allen posted a picture of himself getting some seafood with Gemma Whelan, who plays his sister Yara on screen.
Of course, since both Theon and Yara are Ironborn, seafood seems like the perfect choice for the two actors. Despite their occasionally fraught relationship with one another on screen, Allen and Whelan have managed to strike up a friendship in real life.
There’s still some uncertainty about whether Allen’s character will be able to find redemption after everything he’s gone through, but Yara is certainly the character on the show who most wants her brother back. Though they only reconnected recently, Yara seems deeply invested in the future of her brother, and in whether he’ll ever be able to leave Reek behind. If he can’t, at least Alfie Allen can still enjoy some lobster with his onscreen sister, identity fully intact.
12 A Break for Soccer
Taken during filming for season six, this is a nice shot that reminds us that Emilia Clarke doesn’t have silver hair naturally. Hanging out at a soccer game with co-stars Peter Dinklage and Conleth Hill, Clarke looks more happy than she’s ever gotten to be in the world of Game of Thrones. This trio of actors didn’t get the chance to share much screen time until season seven, although they filmed in many of the same locations. In fact, Hill and Clarke didn’t share the screen at all until the season six finale.
Dinklage, who is now one of Clarke’s principal screen partners, only joined her contingent in recent years, and he’s been a wonderful addition to Daenerys’s world. The best Easter egg in this photo is showrunner David Benioff, who appears to be reading something pretty intensely behind Clarke and Dinklage. Is it a script? A comment? A review? That’s just one more secret of Game of Thrones we may never know the answer to.
11 Hodor Getting Towed
Hodor’s final moments on Game of Thrones are among the show’s most definitively tragic. This is a character who fell victim to Bran’s overconfidence, and lost his life and his ability to speak in the process. During his final moments onscreen, Kristian Nairn gives a remarkably compelling performance, especially considering the fact that he can only say a single word. Of course, Nairn is fully capable of speaking full sentences off camera, and also seems to be a pretty hilarious person.
In this picture, posted by Finn Jones, who plays Loras Tyrell on the show, Nairn is being towed by what appears to be a tiny horse. The circumstances surrounding the photo are unclear, but the picture is ironic nonetheless because Nairn’s role on the show often involved towing Bran Stark around.
Nairn, an undeniably large person, now gets a chance to feel what it’s like to be towed, but his face doesn’t really betray whether or not he’s enjoying the experience.
10 Some Comic-Con Fun
Comic-Con seems to be the place where the cast of Game of Thrones do a fair bit of bonding. After all, when they’re actually filming the show, they’re on several different continents shooting scenes that may or may not feature the show’s other central characters. Varys and Sansa, for example, haven’t shared an extended amount of screen time over the course of the show, but that doesn’t mean Sophie Turner and Conleth Hill, the actors who portray them, can’t hang out at Comic-Con.
In fact, this photo suggests that Turner and Hill are having a great time together. Hill seems totally fine with Turner’s tongue on his face, and knows how to mug it for the camera as well. Although Varys may be all business in the world of the show, Hill certainly knows how to provide some hilarity when it’s called for. Accounts of his presence on set suggests that he’s likely to get the other cast members laughing, even if their shooting day has been especially long.
9 More Tongues at Comic-Con
Another great example of how fun these actors are when they aren’t in character, this Comic-Con shot also comes to us from Pedro Pascal’s Instagram. Here, the actor poses with Natalie Dormer, Gwendoline Christie, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, and showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss.
The best thing about the photo is that they don’t seem to have discussed whether they were going to be silly or play it straight. As a result, Dormer, Coster-Waldas, Pascal, and Weiss all look pretty normal, and Christie and Benioff seem to be losing their minds.
The image also serves as a depressing reminder of just how attractive this cast is. These people typically have at least one layer of grime on their faces. After all, Westeros is a dirty place. When they’re cleaned up, though, they’re almost depressingly beautiful. Game of Thrones is great for plenty of reasons, but the fact that it employs so many beauties is definitely one of them.
8 A Mournful Remembrance
Actor Richard Madden didn't join Instagram until after his time playing Robb on Thrones had come to an end, but that's alright, because throwbacks are a thing. In this pick, we see the two brothers looking particularly sorrowful. Perhaps this was Madden's last day on set, or perhaps they're just too good at brooding not to do it in pictures. Whatever the case may be, it's clear that Kit Harrington and Madden actually do look like brothers, which is a remarkable feat in and of itself.
Of course, Jon's only a bastard, but the show and books suggest that Robb and Jon were fairly close to one another prior to Robb's death. Madden's time on the show sadly ran out, but it seems like he formed a lasting bond with many of his castmates while he was a part of Game of Thrones. Robb may be gone on the show, but he lives on in our hearts, and from the looks of it, in Kit Harrington's heart as well.
7 A Mother's Day Celebration
I do believe I qualify for Mother's Day. However being without my babies takes me to the place where I feel closest to them. 'Highly flammable ' places. 🐉😢💥 #happymothersdaytoallthemothersofdragonsoutthere #ifyouronfireandyouknowitthankyomamma #badassmamasarewhatmakebadassbabies #ohandtonight? #ITSONLIKEKHALEESIKONGBABY. 🙌
Daenerys Targaryen may or may not be able to have children, but she’s certainly capable of giving birth to dragons. To celebrate Mother’s Day, our very own mother of dragons, Emilia Clarke, decided to take a picture next to some particularly flammable objects. Unfortunately, Clarke wasn’t able to spend the day with her actual children, mostly because they’re CGI creations, but this fenced-in area of highly flammable material will have to do.
Clarked captioned the photo by wishing all the mothers of dragons out there a happy Mother’s Day. Clarke has been an expert Instagrammer since she joined the site, and her love of all things flammable only reinforces her onscreen image.
Of course, Clarke’s much more bubbly in real life than she gets to be on screen, and her work on Instagram allows that personality to shine through. If only Daenerys could lighten up a little bit, she may find ruling a more enjoyable endeavor.
6 Sisterly Love
Until recently, Sansa and Arya Stark hadn’t shared the screen since the first season of Game of Thrones. Still, that hasn’t kept Sophie Turner and Maisie Williams from becoming fast friends. The two Stark actresses have been close since the show’s first season, and despite not filming the majority of their scenes together, have managed to spend quite a bit of time together off-camera, which makes sense.
They were the only two young girls on a show filled with adults, and although their characters have taken substantially different paths over the course of the show, their real life counterparts bonded over their shared experience. After all, both girls have grown up on the show, and audiences have been given a chance to watch that growth.
As Maisie Williams says in the post, they’re pretty devoted sisters. Fortunately, it seems like they have a lot more in common in real life than they do on the show.
5 An Album Cover
Pedro Pascal is just very good at Instagram. This photo, also taken at Comic-Con, shows some different Thrones cast members posing for a fake album cover that sounds pretty terrific. How Pascal managed to sneakily take this photo with Sophie Turner, Maisie Williams and Natalie Dormer without being rushed by fans remains a mystery, but it doesn’t make the photo itself any less wonderful.
You can admire Sophie Turner’s outfit, or her sprawled out pose. If that doesn’t do it for you, you can wonder what exactly Dormer is looking at way off in the distance, and why Pascal seems to be looking in the complete opposite direction. And, of course, there’s Maisie Williams quietly owning the whole thing with a more relaxed pose. Whatever pose you choose to admire, we can all agree that Pascal’s presence among the cast is sorely missed, and not just because of Oberyn. We will never see the likes of his Instagram game again.
4 A Day Off
Posted without comment by Finn Jones, this photo gives us a hint at the fun the Thrones cast has together when they aren’t filming. Featuring a plethora of actors from the show, it appears to show many of them on their way to the beach. As always, it looks like Pedro Pascal is having a really great time, and it’s a rare chance to see Charles Dance on social media.
Of course, the best face of the bunch is probably Peter Dinklage’s, if only because it suggests a great deal of confusion or unease. As Tyrion Lannister, Dinklage is often charged with appearing to know what’s going on, but this photo suggests he may not always have the same level of knowledge in real life. Whatever these folks are up to, it looks like a lot of fun.
3 A Post-Emmys Pout-Off
Jon Snow and Sansa Stark have something of a contentious relationship on screen these days, but Kit Harrington and Sophie Turner seem to be perfectly happy to pose in real life. Following the Emmys in 2016, Turner and Harrington had what Turner describes as a “pout-off.” Of course, Harrington is notorious for his pouting skills as Jon Snow. It’s basically what he’s known for, at least in the world of the show.
Turner isn’t backing down, though, and we can certainly admire her determination. She’s clearly brought her A-game, at least in regards to pouting. The pair of them combined create more pouting than any one person can handle.
Of course, this photo is also the millionth reminder of just how beautiful the cast of this show is, even as they continue to kill people off at an extraordinary pace. All men must die, but these particular men and women are going to look pretty good doing it.
2 No Hard Feelings
Although his time on Thrones was short, Pedro Pascal certainly made an impact as Oberyn Martell, one that the show’s subsequent Dornish characters had trouble living up to. Unfortunately, Pascal’s time on the show was cut short by an encounter with The Mountain, one that left him without a head. It was a sad day for fans of the character, and for Tyrion Lannister, who Oberyn was representing in his trial by combat.
Still, it’s nice to see that Pascal can have some sense of humor about the whole affair. By posting a picture of himself with Hafþór Júlíus Björnsson, saying that the two of them are friends, Pascal certainly seems to be suggesting that there are no hard feelings between him and the man who crushed his character’s skull.
The difference in body size between the two actors is also hilarious, and was part of what made the fight between them in the show so compelling.
1 Together At Last
This recent post gives us a great behind the scenes peek at the first meetings between Jon Snow and Daenerys Targaryen. Of course, while that on screen meeting was quite tense, Kit Harrington and Emilia Clarke have known each other for years. Still, in their first scenes together on screen they were total strangers, and tensions have continued to mount in part because Jon refuses to bend the knee.
Emilia Clarke points out just how maddening Jon’s refusal to swear allegiance has been for Daenerys thus far this season, especially since it’s apparent that they have similar goals. This particular Instagram shows how close the actors are. Also, you just can’t beat Kit’s goofy smile and glasses, both of which make him look a lot less like the broody Northerner we know so well.
Do you follow the Game of Thrones cast on Instagram? Who's your favorite? Let us know in the comments!