For a television show based on a fantasy series written by an American writer (the Bayonne, New Jersey born George R.R. Martin), for an American network (H.B.O.) by American producers (David Benioff and D.B. Weiss) “Game of Thrones” seems to be lacking an American presence when it comes to its actors. In fact, the great Peter Dinklage, who plays Tyrion Lannister, and Jason Momoa who played Khal Drogo are the only Yanks to ever star in the series.
The Brits and the Irish dominate the casting and yeah, I understand why. Dramas based on mythical medieval-like words tend to go over better when the actors are used to speaking in the Queen’s tongue. Still, you will have to excuse my Red White and Blue fever but I don’t see why Game of Thrones can’t have a little more of a dash of from this side of the Not so Narrow Sea. I mean, if London born Andrew Lincoln can play the lead of a jaded Southerner in The Walking Dead, why can’t more Americans populate Westeros?
Here’s to Hot Pie baking warm apple pies. Here are Twelve North Americans who should be cast in Game of Thrones.
1. Christina Hendricks
Despite claiming to Conan O’Brien that she isn’t a watcher of “Game of Thrones”, the curvy “Mad Men” star would fit in perfectly in the carnal world of Westoros. That’s not to say she would only be eye candy on the show. In the world of “Game of Thrones”, those with hair kissed by fire play important roles. Judging by her “Man Men” character arc, she should have no problem adding power and intrigue to whichever side she backs for the Iron Throne.
2. Ron Perlman
The strong jawed “Sons of Anarchy” and “Hellboy” star could kick some asses and take some names on “Game of Thrones.” I could see him challenging the Hound in a fight or joining the Brotherhood without Banners. Anyone who has seen him in “Enemy at the Gate” knows he can pull off a serviceable accent as well.
3. Adrien Brody
The Oscar winning Star of “the Pianist” hasn’t really found much of a home since his triumphs if you don’t count Wes Anderson movies and Predator reboots. You don’t win a statue without having a degree of talent and friends in high places. Perhaps the halls of the Red Keep would welcome a character played by Mr. Brody.
4. Nathan Fillion
Something like this would make the internet break. Canadian (that’s why I wrote “North Americans” in the title) Nathan Fillion being cast in “Game of Thrones” would be a fantasy nerds dream. After a memorable turn as playing Captain Mal Reynolds on the cult classic “Firefly”, the “Castle” star would hold his own with the diverse set of personalities in the series. Any fan of Comicon panels can tell you that Fillion would be interested; he pretty much lobbies for a spot on the series anytime the topic is brought up.
5. Jimmy Smits
Lawyer on “LA Law”, detective in “NYPD Blue”, Presidential candidate on “The West Wing”, pimp on “Sons of Anarchy” and even Princess Leia’s adoptive father in “Star Wars”, Jimmy Smits fits in where ever he goes. ‘Game of Thrones” would be no exception.
6. Lauren Cohan
Cohan, who plays Maggie on “The Walking Dead” was raised in the U.K. but born in Philadelphia, which makes her eligible for this list. Cohen seems to create lasting memories for fans on whichever set she graces. Her roles in “Supernatural”, “The Vampire Dairies”, and “Chuck” always left us wanting more. With that kind of experience both working with an ensemble cast and acting in fantasy drama, Cohan’s transition into the world of Fire and Ice should be an easy one. As long as Chris Hardwick doesn’t host an hour long “Talking Thrones” afterwards, I think fans would be happy with Lauren Cohan joining the cast.
7. Viggo Mortensen
If Nathan Fillion in “Game of Thrones” would break the internet, than Viggo Mortensen gracing his presence in the Seven Kingdoms would cause a cosmic rift in the Fantasy Universe. The worldly “Lord of the Rings” star was born in New York City and spent his childhood in upstate New York. Still, Mortensen has a certain presence that makes you swear he was born just outside Winterfell. There was a fan push to see him get the role of Mance Rayder, a part that eventually went to Ciaran Hinds. No matter where he sets foot, from, The Wall to Dorne, Mortensen seems like the ideal choice to join the cast and bring a little Middle-Earth realness to the Known World.
8. Oliver Platt
I’ve had a soft spot for Oliver Platt ever since he played Porthos in the Disney version of “The Three Musketeers.” Maybe his swordplay could come in handy in “Game of Thrones” as the long lost brother of Syrio Forel coming all the way from Braavos to help out a troubled Arya Stark.Oliver Platt is a talented actor who could fit with both the dramatic scenes and the lighter comedic moments in “Game of Thrones.”
9. Laura Linney
Oliver Platt’s co-star from “The Big C” Laura Linney also would fit in nicely on “Game of Thrones.” Linney has previous HBO experience in her Emmy winning role of Abigail Adams in “John Adams”. She is an actor that commands both respect and sympathy in her characters and with the void left from the (spoiler alert) death of Cat Stark, Linney could slide into the viewers hearts and minds in whichever role she was given.
10. Forest Whittaker
As an Oscar winner, there aren’t many other American actors who are more qualified to take a role on “Game of Thrones.” As long as his performance in big budget fantasy epics goes better than that of ‘Battlefield: Earth” he should be able to command the attention of the audience and get over the whole “people in Game of Thrones have to be British” hump.
11. Amanda Seyfried
The “Mama Mia” and “Mean Girls” star might seem to sanitized at first glance to star in such a lustful show as “Game of Thrones” but a closer glance at her career shows she is no stranger to the sex scene. Films like “Alpha Dog”, “Chloe”, and “Lovelace” prove this. Could the blonde Amanda Seyfried play a yet unseen Lannister? I think so.
12. Stanley Tucci
The star of “the Lovley Bones” and “the Devil Wears Prada” is another personal favorite of mine. Though I haven’t seen too many characters (if any) in Games of Thrones that wear glasses, Stanley could put his patented pair down just like he did for “The Hunger Games” if it meant a trip to Westeros.