Why do I keep typing “Season” as “Seasion”? Like…muh?
Anyway. My idea of spending more time on the new novel is going pretty well. I said I would invest less time this year in following filming leaks, and I mean it. That said? I actually AM quite interested in news about filming locations. Since Dany & Co. are coming to Westeros, that narrows down the range of possible settings on the show, and I’m interested in what those settings may look like.
Per several posts at Watchers, we have some nice concrete news about various places, outside of Northern Ireland, where Season 7 will be filmed. The filming season will be a bit later in the year than previously, partly because they want to film in actual winter. That means we’ll also have to wait longer for the season to air. It’ll be a short season; HBO confirms seven episodes this year, so I need to speculate with a short-ish season in mind. For getting actual winter, the production is returning to Iceland in January, and the rumor is that “six major characters” will be involved in the Icelandic scenes.
Meanwhile, they’re also lining up a number of interesting Spanish locations, including Sevilla, Almodovar del Rio, Zumaia, Santiponce, Caceres, and Bermeo.
For some of these locations, we can first assume they’ll be doing Dorne scenes here, which I suppose will be more engaging now that the Sand Sucks are part of a group that includes Dany & Tyrion, Olenna Tyrell and the Greyjoy sibs. Some of the Spanish locations, however, look better for more northern areas of Westeros.
For Sevilla, they’re going back to the Real Alcazar to film more Water Gardens scenes. Hopefully not trying to do any more action scenes there. It’s a gorgeous location, but it’s better for showing everyone just sitting around drinking wine.
For Almodovar del Rio, they’re shooting at the castle, which looks like this:
For Zumaia, they’re filming at Itzurun Beach, which features some quite interesting geology. Here’s a wide view:
And here’s more of a close-up view of that flysch:
We have specifics for Santiponce. They’ll be filming at the Roman ruins of Italica, and they’ll be filming action scenes there. Here’s Italica:
The news is helpful, as there’s an embarrassment of interesting architecture in Santiponce that would look fabulous on Game of Thrones. I’m a bit worried about how they’ll manage action scenes in this lovely historical site, so for now I’ll suppose they’re doing dragon stuff there, so the action will be mostly CGI and they don’t have to work so hard not to break anything.
Caceres is another area with lots of interesting stuff to choose from, but we have confirmation that there will be filming in both Caceres city and Malpartida, another city in the same province. Watchers speculates that the Malpartida site will be Los Barruecos, a lake surrounded by rocks and greenery, and looking around at a Google image search of Malpartida, I agree that Los Barruecos seems like pretty much the only part of the city that would look appropriate on Game of Thrones.
For Caceres city, we don’t have specifics yet, and there’s lots of cool stuff to choose from. The city walls are pretty cool:
Arco de Cristo is interesting:
I’m getting a mostly King’s Landing vibe from the city. There’s also a castle with a very atmospheric Arabic cistern underground:
I keep finding all these stock photos with watermarks. Oh well.
For Bermeo, there’s basically one spot in the city that’s at all Game of Thrones-ish, and that’s San Juan de Gaztelugatxe.
They’re filming on the shores, there’ll be a technical team of over 400 people, and the equipment will be arriving at this location very soon. I really really love this location, so I want to show you some more of it:
I sure hope they use that stone bridge on the show.
If this is what the island looks like in summer, then we’ll be getting some gorgeous views in Season 7.
Iceland is pretty much guaranteed to be the North, and if the bit about “six major characters is true,” it’s not beyond the Wall. More likely near Winterfell.
It’s established that Sevilla will serve for the Water Gardens. Santiponce also looks like a Dornish location. I expect Dany’s new alliance will land in Dorne first to replenish provisions and possibly round up some new infantry forces before they continue on to King’s Landing.
And where might they stop along the way to King’s Landing? Los Barruecos, San Juan de Gaztelugatxe, and the Almodovar del Rio castle all look like great Stormlands settings. Watchers folks are saying the castle looks like Highgarden, and I guess that’s possible? But for exterior shots, I disagree; Highgarden should be bigger, more spread out, lower to the ground. Also, the terrain looks more Stormlands than Reach. If they’re using the castle just for interiors, then…no, I still don’t like this for Highgarden. I like it for a bannerman castle in a more Mediterranean climate. Remember Horn Hill in Season 6? Highgarden should be like that, only more impressive.
Itzurun Beach is tricky. I want it to be the Westerlands; it’s temperate enough to be the west, and rocky enough, but it’s not quite lush and green enough for the Stormlands. It could be basically anywhere, though.
I have some ideas for where we may be going, but they’re squishy at best. I’ll also be looking out for casting news, and based on casting, I may be able to make a better case for certain settings.