Game of Thrones showrunners discuss major character death in season 7 episode 3
WARNING: Spoilers for Game of Thrones S07E03 ahead!
It was one hell of a Game of Thrones episode this week, what with Jon Snow and Daenerys Targaryen finally meeting, Cersei inflicting some seriously twisted torture on her enemies and, of course, the death of the beloved Lady Olenna.
The final scene of the episode saw the Lannister army storm the Tyrell home of Highgarden, leaving Lady Olenna to finally meet her demise. However, in true Lady Olenna-style, the character obviously still managed to have the last laugh.
Showing some mercy towards his enemy, Jaime persuaded Cersei to allow the old woman a painless and dignified death by drinking poison. Gulping down the liquid without a flinch, Olenna proceeded to turn to her killer and reveal her involvement in King Joffrey’s death. Burn.
Speaking to Entertainment Weekly, showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss discussed the brilliant end to Dame Diana Rigg’s character.
“When we initially cast Diana Rigg, we met with Nina Gold, our legendary casting director, and we had tea with her,” Benioff recalled. “Dames don’t audition for you, you audition for them. And we loved her. She was funny, she was bawdy, she was everything we wanted for that character.
“We’ve been very lucky to write for these legendary actors — like Diana Rigg. Max Von Sydow, Jim Broadbent, and Charles Dance — people who have been doing it for so long and are so frickin’ good at what they do. She’s one of the best in the world and [Olenna’s final scene] is one of my favourites in the whole season. She really brought it.”
Weiss added: “What I love about the way she plays the scene is that even though you leave the scene knowing she’s soon going to be dead shortly after you cut to black you still feel like she won. She’s probably the only character to win her own death scene.”
Jaime actor Coster-Waldau also gave his opinion on the death scene. He said: “Olenna is like Cersei in so many ways, but just from our point of view she’s been on the ‘good’ side.
“And I just love how she goes out. She goes out with bite. She’s never going to beg. She did an amazing job. It was fun to be there and when we wrapped the showrunners came around and said a few words. She’s had a huge impact on the series.”
Game of Thrones airs Mondays at 2pm and 9pm on Sky Atlantic.