HBO’s hit fantasy series “Game of Thrones” is just one episode from wrapping yet another season, but the stars are already looking ahead to the final installments — and their paychecks.
Lead cast members Peter Dinklage, Kit Harington, Lena Headey, Emilia Clarke and Nikolaj Coster-Waldau plan to return for Season 7 and 8 — but there’s a catch. Deadline reports that all five stars are seeking a pay increase of $200,000 each per episode for both seasons, though only Season 7 is confirmed.
Prior to the most recent negotiations, HBO was supposedly paying the main “Game of Thrones” cast members $300,000 each per episode — a rate that's said to have been decided in 2014 as they headed into filming Season 5. The latest deal locks all five actors in for next season, as well as a potential Season 8. In true “GoT” fashion, Deadline notes that the new deal does not guarantee the cast members' characters are safe from death.
The pay raise excludes several important cast members, including Sophie Turner, Maisie Williams and Natalie Dormer. The Hollywood Reporter said contract negotiations for the aforementioned stars have yet to be completed. While no figures have been released regarding their pay, information related to the last known salary negotiations suggest that Turner, Williams and Dormer will likely receive less than some of their co-stars.
In 2014 Wetpaint reported that the trio was part of a lower pay tier, raking in just $55,000 per episode during Season 5. There is also said to be a third pay tier, made up of actors making even less. No tier 3 stars were named. It remains unclear what they or the main “Game of Thrones” stars were being paid prior to the initial raise. E! Online did, however, feature Dinklage on a list of high-paid actors in Hollywood in 2014, suggesting he was getting $150,000 per episode at the time.
While this recent deal assures the return of characters like Tyrion Lannister (Dinklage), Jon Snow (Harington), Cersei Lannister (Headey), Daenerys Targaryen (Clarke) and Jamie Lannister (Coster-Waldau), the fate of many remains unknown. There's been some speculation that Gendry (Joe Dempsie), the bastard son of Robert Baratheon (Mark Addy), who has been missing in action since Season 3, will be returning to the show before the credits roll on Season 6, episode 10.
Season 6 is slated to come to an end on Sunday, June 26. HBO has revealed the finale episode will be 69 minutes long, providing fans nearly 10 extra minutes of show time. Little else is known about the installment aside from the title, “Winds of Winter.” The finale’s title is a nod to author George R.R. Martin’s forthcoming novel in the popular “A Song of Ice and Fire” series of the same name.
Tune in to “Game of Thrones” on HBO Sunday at 9 p.m. EDT.