Movies & TV

George R.R. Martin Had a Good Reason to Turn Down a Game of Thrones Season 8 Cameo

Let's just say he has better things to do
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George R.R. Martin—a sweet man who loves dragons and killing heroes—is pretty busy these days, what with the beloved epic fantasy series that fans have been waiting more than two decades for him to finish. He also has a little side project in helping HBO pull off one of the biggest television phenomenas of this century in Game of Thrones, the adaptation of his "A Song of Ice and Fire" saga. On top of that, there's the appearances, the interviews, oh, and the multiple spinoffs and prequels in the works based off the world and characters he created.

So, when HBO invited him to have a cameo in the final season of Game of Thrones, he had a pretty good reason to turn it down: Martin still has an epic fantasy series to finish writing (even if the books have passed the movies).

“David and Dan invited me to a cameo in one of the final episodes, which I was tempted to do,” Martin told Entertainment Weekly. “But I didn’t think just for the sake of a cameo I could take the time to return to Belfast.”

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Good on Martin for prioritizing finishing writing "Winds of Winter" over some silly fan service for the show.

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As it turns out, he was almost in the first season of Game of Thrones before his cameo was reshot.

“There was a cameo in the original pilot that was cut,” Martin told EW. “I was a guest at Dany’s wedding. But that was when she was played by Tamzin Merchant so all that footage got thrown out when we recast with Emilia Clarke.”

As fun as it would be to see Martin inside his own creation, fans can likely all agree that it's more important he actually finishes writing these damn books.

Plus, we already have a sort of a stand-in for Martin in the show. Fans have always theorized that Sam Tarly is going to write "A Song of Ice and Fire," chronicling the historic records of the events of Game of Thrones within Game of Thrones. In fact, Martin himself has always considered himself a Sam Tarly-type.

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"I would probably be Samwell Tarly. I love Sam, too. He's a great character," he said at Comic Con a few years ago. "Tyrion might be who I want to be, but Sam is probably closer to who I actually am. The fat kid who likes to read books and doesn't like to go up a lot of stairs."

So, go ahead and finish those books, George, Sam's got you covered.

This story originally appeared on Esquire.com.

* Minor edits have been made by the Esquiremag.ph editors.

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Matt Miller
Matt Miller is the Associate Culture Editor for Esquire.com
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