Game of Thrones Poster #37 FRAMED Ned Stark on the Iron Throne George R.R. Martin


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Game of Thrones is an American fantasy drama television series created for HBO by David Benioff and D. B. Weiss. It is an adaptation of A Song of Ice and Fire, George R. R. Martin’s series of fantasy novels, the first of which is titled A Game of Thrones. The episodes are mainly written by Benioff and Weiss, who are the executive producers alongside Martin, who writes one episode per season. Filmed in a Belfast studio and on location elsewhere in Northern Ireland, Malta, Scotland, Croatia, Iceland, the United States and Morocco, it premiered on HBO in the United States on April 17, 2011. Two days after the fourth season premiered in April 2014, HBO renewed Game of Thrones for a fifth and sixth season. The series, set on the fictional continents of Westeros and Essos at the end of a decade-long summer, interweaves several plot lines. The first follows the members of several noble houses in a civil war for the Iron Throne of the Seven Kingdoms; the second covers the rising threat of the impending winter and the mythical creatures of the North; the third chronicles the attempts of the exiled last scion of the realm’s deposed dynasty to reclaim the throne. Through its morally ambiguous characters, the series explores issues of social hierarchy, religion, loyalty, corruption, civil war, crime, and punishment. Game of Thrones has attracted record numbers of viewers on HBO and obtained an exceptionally broad and active international fan base. It received widespread acclaim by critics, although its frequent use of nudity, violence and sexual violence has attracted criticism. The series has won numerous awards and nominations, including a Primetime Emmy Award nomination for Outstanding Drama Series for its first four seasons, a Golden Globe Award nomination for Best Television Series – Drama, a Hugo Award for Best Dramatic Presentation in both Long Form and Short Form, and a Peabody Award. Among the ensemble cast, Peter Dinklage won the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series and the Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor – Series, Miniseries or Television Film for his role as Tyrion Lannister.

Eddard “Ned” Stark was the Lord of Winterfell and Warden of the North, and briefly served as Hand of the King to Robert Baratheon. He was a POV character for fifteen chapters in A Game of Thrones, the first novel of the series. He is respected throughout the realm for dedication to duty and honor, though he also comes across as cold and distant due to his past and heritage, and is privately a somber man. Despite this, he loves his wife and children fiercely and teaches them valuable lessons with warmth. His ancestral dark hair and gray eyes are inherited by his children Jon and Arya.

The second son of Lord Rickard Stark, Ned was fostered by Lord Jon Arryn at the Eyrie in the Vale from the age of eight until he was twenty, and befriended his fellow ward Robert Baratheon who fell in love with Ned’s sister Lyanna. When Lyanna’s abduction by Prince Rhaegar resulted in Ned’s father and older brother Brandon being executed by King Aerys II, Ned became Lord of Winterfell and married his brother’s betrothed Catelyn Tully. Joining Robert against the Targaryens, Ned was a prominent figure of the rebellion, breaking the Siege of Storm’s End and commanding the rebel forces when they rode to reach King’s Landing after the Battle of the Trident due to Robert sustaining wounds. Arriving to find the city fallen by treachery and the royal family, especially Rhaegar’s wife and children, brutally slaughtered, Ned was enraged that their noble cause was won by the Lannisters’ trickery, especially Jaime Lannister’s murder of the king despite his sworn oath to die for his protection, and harbored a mistrust and enmity of the family for the rest of his life. He also briefly became estranged from Robert following their argument over the brutal deaths of Rhaegar’s family (Ned was appalled, while Robert justified the acts), causing a rift even Jon Arryn couldn’t mend. It would take the death of Lyanna to reconcile them in their shared grief. Riding out to complete the war by himself and in anger, Ned later found a dying Lyanna in the mountains of Dorne after a deadly showdown with the remaining three knights of Aerys’ Kingsguard. Of the eight men who confronted the knights, only Ned and his friend Howland Reed survived. Comforting his dying sister, Ned made a promise to her which remains unknown to this day. During the war he supposedly fathered Jon Snow with a woman whose identity is widely speculated but unknown. In the war’s aftermath, Ned brought Catelyn, their son Robb, and Jon to Winterfell. Although Catelyn resented Ned for rearing Jon as a member of their family, Ned and she four more children: Sansa, Arya, Brandon, and Rickon. Ned ruled the north well for the next fifteen years, though he was always haunted by the deaths of his siblings and father, and never left the north except to help King Robert end the Greyjoy rebellion. After Lord Greyjoy’s later rebellion was crushed, Ned fostered Lord Greyjoy’s only surviving son, Theon, and raised him at Winterfell; but Theon resented this, as he knew he was a hostage in truth.

At the beginning of A Game of Thrones, Ned brings his young son Bran to watch him behead a Night’s Watch deserter, to teach responsibility; and later learns of Jon Arryn’s death and that Robert shall visit Winterfell. Though pleased to see Robert, Ned is reluctant to accept the king’s offer to take Arryn’s place as Hand of the King; but when Catelyn presents him a letter from her sister Lysa that the Lannisters had murdered Arryn, Ned accepts the offer to investigate the matter. Concurrently, Ned allows Jon to join the Night’s Watch. In King’s Landing, Ned is spied upon by Lords Petyr Baelish, also called “Littlefinger”, Varys, called “the Spider”, and by Queen Cersei Lannister. When Catelyn secretly tells him of an assassination attempt on their son Bran, Ned promises to find additional evidence against the Lannisters. Ned later receives a lead through Petyr Baelish to one of Robert’s illegitimate children (Gendry), and realizes that Arryn’s death is part of a larger conspiracy. Ned’s time in King’s Landing also drives rising tensions between the Starks and Lannisters to breaking point, which later sparks the beginning of the War of the Five Kings. After Catelyn abducts Tyrion Lannister to answer for the murder of Arryn and the attempt on Bran’s life, Jaime Lannister openly attacks him in the streets, seriously wounding his leg and giving him a permanent limp. He briefly resigns his position when Robert insists on killing Daenerys Targaryen (the deposed king’s daughter) and her unborn child, though Robert gives him back the position as Ned is the only man he trusts to rule the kingdom out of everyone in King’s Landing.

Ned concludes that Queen Cersei’s children (Joffrey, Myrcella, and Tommen) are illegitimate and were fathered by Jaime Lannister, Cersei’s twin, and that the Lannisters murdered Jon Arryn due to his investigation into the same matter. Before Ned can tell the king and end the Lannisters’ pretensions, Robert is fatally wounded while hunting and dictates that Ned be Regent for Joffrey, whereas Ned promises “until his true heir” takes the throne. After Robert’s death, Ned writes to Stannis, the eldest of Robert’s younger brothers, of Joffrey’s illegitimacy and Stannis’s own right to the Iron Throne. When this is discovered, Ned is arrested for treason despite his efforts to gain support to overthrow Cersei. It is agreed that if Ned declares Joffrey the rightful heir, Ned’s life will be spared and he will be allowed to join the Night’s Watch, and is told that his daughter Sansa will be killed if he refuses; he makes a public confession of his “treason” as part of the deal, but Joffrey has Ned beheaded anyway on a whim, foiling his family’s plan to maintain peace with the North and ending any chance of peace with the Starks. After learning of Ned’s execution, Robb is declared ‘King in the North’, and Stannis declares himself heir to the Iron Throne, as does his younger brother, Renly, driving the realm into civil war. Cersei and Jamie’s younger brother, the dwarf Tyrion, is named the new Hand of the King in place of his father Tywin who is leading the military effort against the rebels, and orders that Ned’s head be removed from its spike and his bones sent to Catelyn. Meanwhile the Iron Islanders take Moat Cailin, isolating the North, leaving it unknown if Ned’s remains will return to Winterfell to be buried. In A Dance with Dragons, Lady Barbrey Dustin tells Theon Greyjoy that she is waiting for word that Ned Stark’s bones have reached Moat Cailin, whereas she intends to feed Stark’s bones to her dogs.

Eddard is a major character in the television adaptation, in which he was portrayed by Sean Bean.

Shaun Mark “Sean” Bean (born 17 April 1959) is an English film, television, theatre and voice actor. He graduated from the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in 1983 and was a member of the Royal Shakespeare Company. Bean first found success for his portrayal of Richard Sharpe in the ITV television series Sharpe. He has since garnered further recognition for his performances in the HBO epic fantasy series Game of Thrones, the BBC anthology series Accused and the ITV historical drama Henry VIII. His most prominent film role was in Peter Jackson’s The Lord of the Rings trilogy as Boromir (2001-2003). Other notable roles include Alec Trevelyan in the James Bond film GoldenEye (1995) and Odysseus in Troy (2004) as well as Patriot Games (1992), Ronin (1998), National Treasure (2004), North Country (2005), The Island (2005) and Black Death (2010). He will also co-star in the upcoming science fiction film Jupiter Ascending. As a voice artist he has featured in the video game The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion and the drama The Canterbury Tales among several others. Bean has received several honours throughout his career and has won an International Emmy for Best Actor. He has also been nominated for a BAFTA and Saturn Award. Bean starred in the first season of Game of Thrones, HBO’s adaptation of the A Song of Ice and Fire novels by George R.R. Martin, playing the part of Lord Eddard Stark. Bean and Peter Dinklage were the two actors whose inclusion show runners David Benioff and Dan Weiss considered necessary for the show to become a success, and for whose roles no other actors were considered. His nuanced portrayal of what could have been a stereotypical “noble leader” character won him critical praise; as the A.V. Club’s reviewer put it, he “portrayed Ned as a man who knew he lived in the muck but hoped for better and assumed everyone else would come along for the ride.” HBO’s promotional efforts focused on Bean as the show’s leading man and best-known actor. The photograph of him as Ned sitting on the Iron Throne holding his greatsword was used for promotional posters and on the cover of the first season’s DVD box set as well as the cover of a tie-in reedition of the novel A Game of Thrones.

Iron Throne: “The breath of the greatest dragon forged the Iron Throne…the swords of the vanquished, a thousand of them, melted together like so many candles…” ?Viserys Targaryen. The Iron Throne is the throne upon which the King of the Andals and the First Men sits, located in the Great Hall of the Red Keep in the city of King’s Landing. Besides the King himself (or Lord Regent) only the Hand of the King may sit on the Iron Throne. The term is also used colloquially to refer to the monarchy that rules the Seven Kingdoms and the authority of the King (e.g. “Rebellion against the Iron Throne”). The Iron Throne was forged at the order of Aegon the Conqueror, the first of the Targaryen Kings, who conquered six of the seven independent kingdoms of Westeros and unified them under his rule – the seventh kingdom of Dorne was later joined through a marriage alliance. The throne was allegedly forged from the 1,000 swords that had been surrendered to Aegon in the War of Conquest by the lords who had offered their fealty, though the actual number of the swords is less than two hundred. These were subsequently melted down by the fiery breath of Aegon’s dragon, Balerion the Black Dread, then beaten and bent into a throne of imposing appearance. Olenna Tyrell, in typical fashion, has a low opinion of the throne itself, blithely referring to it as “that ugly iron chair”.

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