The Game of Thrones prequel House of the Dragon has cast its first leading role: English actor Paddy Considine will play the benevolent King Viserys I in the hugely anticipated HBO/Sky Atlantic series.
In recent times, Considine has starred in Peaky Blinders, The Death of Stalin, The Outsider, The Suspicions of Mr Whicher and is currently in the HBO/Sky Atlantic limited miniseries The Third Day, co-starring Jude Law.
He will bring gravitas and humanity to the role of King Viserys I, who is chosen by the lords of Westeros to succeed the Old King, Jaehaerys Targaryen, at the Great Council at Harrenhal.
Variety reported that Viserys was a warm, kind and decent man whose primarily ambition is to fulfil has grandfather's wishes.
George RR Martin enthusiasts will recall that Viserys I ruled over Westeros around 100 years after Aegon’s Conquest. His children, Rhaenyra and Aegon II, would ultimately fight a bloody civil war over his throne that became known as the Dance of Dragons.
Considine is also an acclaimed writer and director, creating the uncompromising features Tyrannosaur (2011) and Journeyman (2017), and he has collaborated with This Is England creator Shane Meadows on a variety of projects, including Dead Man's Shoes and A Room for Romeo Brass.
House of the Dragon is set a few centuries prior to the events of Game of Thrones and the story of the House Targaryen will unfold over 10 episodes. It is expected to air sometime in 2022.
Martin co-created House of the Dragon with Ryan Condal, based on Martin’s book Fire & Blood.
Variety reported that HBO previously scrapped a Game of Thrones prequel pilot starring Naomi Watts, just one of a raft of spun-off concepts it developed but which have not seen he light of day.