D&D give an interview and reveal new MALE writer for Season 5
Are you in the same room when you’re writing the episodes?
David Benioff: We don’t write together. We tried to do that on the very first day. We’ll take a half. We’ll basically divvy it up. You get first half, I get second half, and then we swap halves and rewrite.
Dan Weiss: We tried to write the first page of the pilot together, and it literally took us four hours to write three quarters of a page. It was like trying to drive a car, like, “O.K., I’ll do the gas, and you do the brake, and I’ll hold this side of the steering wheel and you hold that side.”
So it’s easier to have one person play writer and the other play editor and then switch roles?
David Benioff: Yeah, yeah.
Dan Weiss: Pretty much. We’re just passing things back and forth. The work happens so quickly and there’s so much of it that I have very little recollection of who did what by the time we end up shooting stuff.
David Benioff: Before we start, we write a really detailed outline, the two of us, and then there’s Bryan Cogman, who started out as our assistant, and now he’s one of the writers on the show—and now, for this coming year, Dave Hill, who was our assistant the last few years, and we’ve promoted him to staff writer. So once we start outlining the season, the four us will sit together, coming up with scenes and plot lines, putting index cards on the board, you know, traditional writers’ room stuff. And then there’s about an eighty-page outline, a scene-by-scene outline, and we divvy up episodes. Last year we wrote seven episodes, Bryan wrote two, and George Martin wrote one.
I didn’t start watching Game of Thrones until I was flipping past and saw the scene with Peter Dinklage dragging a chair across the room while everybody stares at him. I didn’t expect that kind of comedy.
David Benioff: That’s all Dan. That whole bit.
It’s great because the whole sequence is silent.
David Benioff: Except for the squeaky chair. We spent a lot of time in sound design, getting that squeak just right.
Dan Weiss: It’s funny. When we shot the original pilot, which was then later re-shot—it was a pretty grim, dark world, the world of the story. As the seasons have gone on, we consciously take any opportunity we can to inject some light into the situation in a way that doesn’t break the reality of the show.
The actor who plays Arya Stark, Maisie Williams, sells the joke of the wolf bread so beautifully.
David Benioff: She’s so good, that girl. Casting that role was one of the scariest things, because we knew how big the role would get and how dark it would be. The first fifty or so girls we saw just weren’t right. We’ve got an incredible casting director in London, Nina Gold, and she was bringing in all these girls, and no one was right, and it was getting kind of late in the day and we hadn’t found anyone remotely close. I remember we were sitting—in Morocco, right?
Dan Weiss: The Berber Palace Hotel.
David Benioff: We were on location, scouting Morocco, and the one place we could get internet access was by the hotel pool. So we were sitting by the hotel pool on a laptop looking at these—the casting director will send these little casting videos, with thumbnail pictures? So there were forty thumbnail pictures of these girls, and we saw this one, literally that big on the laptop screen, and I was just like, “There’s something interesting about that face,” and clicked on it, and she was amazing. From that point on we had our Arya.
ngl I'm STILL really really upset about those Jaime x Cersei rumors in season 4 because they're my two absolute FAVES. and they seem true as well.....which is such character assassination both Jaime and Cersei and SO DISGUSTING. so to hear that they've hired another male writer is just so goddamn irritating. I can't help but think they're not hiring a woman because she would rightfully call them out on their shit.