'Game of Thrones' Featurette: The Stunt Work for Season 5

Game of Thrones preview - Sand Snakes stunts

Not many could have predicted the kind of cultural phenomenon HBO's Game of Thrones has become over the past four years. The show continues to break records, earn critical accolades, and rank near the top of every annual piracy lists. The series is set to premiere its fifth season in just a few weeks - and if the trailers and novels are any indicator, fans should prepare for even more twists and turns as the show expands into more nations and mythology (established in George R. R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire novels).

The show has been praised for everything it could be at this point. The writing is some of the best in television history, the acting is amazing, the effects are stellar for a TV show - and so forth. Still, something that has remained consistent throughout all four seasons is just how cinematic and real the fight scenes (and violence) is in the series.

Jon Snow Game of Thrones

In a new featurette (see above) Rowley Irlam - the show's stunt coordinator - goes a bit more in-depth into the process of creating and choreographing the fight scenes on Game of Thrones. He talks about how well some of the existing cast members like Kit Harington (Jon Snow), Kristopher Hivju (Tormund), and Iain Glen (Jorah Mormont) take to the stunt training and choreographer, while also teasing the new fighting styles being introduced this season with the Sand Snakes.

Arguably, the best fight scene during GoT's fourth season was the face-off between The Red Viper (Pedro Pascal) and the Mountain (Hafthor Julius Bjornsson). Not only because of its shock value ending and the way it impacted the story for the rest of the season, but also because of how different Oberyn and Gregor's fighting styles were. So with the show set to spend actual time in Dorne this season (instead of just talking about it) - and the introduction of more members of House Martell - fans look to be in for the most different season of the show yet.

Game of Thrones preview - Sand Snakes stunts

Game of Thrones has always had such a large cast of characters - making it hard for some viewers to keep track of who they've been watching onscreen. The introduction of so many new characters, nations, and royal families will most likely push that boundary even further in season five, but die-hard fans won't have much to complain about - it just means more Thrones goodness for them to consume.

As fans of the books will know, the new season is set to take some of the characters they've come to know and love into new situations - ones that are even more interesting and life-threatening than we've ever seen before. Game of Thrones season four expanded on some of the mythology beyond the wall, but it (for the most part) stayed close to the long-term characters and focused on tying up some of their ongoing storylines. That's left those characters to simply move forward with their lives - with audiences still going along for the ride.

Game of Thrones season five will premiere next month on Sunday, April 12th on HBO.

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