Ryan Gosling and 25 Actors We’d Love to See on Game of Thrones

by Kevin Roberts
on January 17, 2017

With HBO hit series Game of Thrones starting to drum up rumors about set photos and upcoming storylines, the anticipation is building around the return of television’s most beloved show.

The night is dark and full of terrors, but so are the days when Game of Thrones still isn’t producing new episodes or even unveiling the official premiere date for the seventh season. Last year the buzz was at a record high, as die hard GOT fans were bracing for more info on whether or not Jon Snow was truly dead or not.

Season six of Game of Thrones revealed and also got all of our favorite characters one step closer to their respective fates, while also setting up what figures to be a pretty epic battle between all of the kingdom’s leaders.

As awesome as Game of Thrones has been and is set up to be this upcoming season, there’s still even more upside to be had before GOT calls it quits after season 8. One way to maximize its potential could be to add to a star-studded cast by introducing a new character or two, possibly of the Hollywood variety.

Part of what makes Game of Thrones so unique is that most of their star cast members aren’t American and before the series were virtual unknowns. However, just imagine the power of season eight if the right familiar face was added in a key (or completely new) role.

The list is long – and depending who you are, quite unique – but we have a handful of actors in mind that we’d love to see on the show, whether they’d be part of Jon Snow’s army, a white walker, a new villain or simply something we can’t even dream up.

Take a look at our list of actors we’d like to see on Game of Thrones and see if you agree with our picks:

1. Ryan Gosling

Gosling doesn’t necessarily top our list and it’s arguable he doesn’t have the voice or accent to make this happen, but is anyone hotter right now? Gosling has been making waves for his elite versatility (acting, singing, dancing) in La La Land, but he’s been impressing for years with a wide array of performances.

The only knock on Gosling is he’s got a very distinct voice and it’s difficult to assess his interest in a genre he’s never really dabbled in (save for his role as Hercules in The Young Hercules). He has the star power and range to be a huge addition, however, regardless of the size of his prospective role.

2. Ewan McGregor

McGregor could make more sense, as he’s had some work in the fantasy genre and has the acting chops and accent to fit nicely into a Game of Thrones role. He’s had experience as a fighter in the Star Wars movies and like most of the other options on this list, has a versatile skill-set that has been utilized in many different roles.

McGregor has a softer demeanor with an unassuming style, too, which could make him perfect for a political character that supports the agenda of one of our main characters.

3. Christian Bale

Bale is without a doubt one of the greatest actors of our time and he’s got the accent to slide right into Game of Thrones without skipping a beat. He’s done period pieces and pulled off numerous layered and demanding roles across an impressive career, too, so no matter what the GOT role would call for, he could fulfill it, and then some.

Bale might be too busy even for a brief appearance, but he’s got that perfect blend of voice, swagger and raw emotion to help add a truly special character to the final season of one of the best shows on TV.

4. Orlando Bloom

Bloom built a career based on a flawless performance in the Lord of the Rings trilogy and also has a nice credit lineup in movies like The Three Musketeers, Pirates of the Caribbean, The Hobbit and Kingdom of Heaven.

Bloom has the look, accent and experience to crush any role on Game of Thrones. He’d fit perfectly as a soldier for any of the armies and has the dramatic power to play a key role if need be.

5. Emily Blunt

It’s not all male actors here, as Emily Blunt is easily one of the top actresses in Hollywood these days and looks like an easy pick to be considered for a role on Game of Thrones.

Not only does Blunt have the accent to fit right into the GOT crowd, but she’s a powerful acting force with versatile, layered roles littered throughout her career. We’ve even see her be pretty badass in Sicario and Edge of Tomorrow.

6. Benedict Cumberbatch

What can’t Cumberbatch do? The British actor has risen to the top of the Hollywood ranks and has quickly made a case for being regarded as the best actor on the scene right now. He’s got the look, demeanor and accent to fit right into a Game of Thrones storyline, while we’ve also see his diverse skill-set pay off in numerous roles.

His appearances in The Hobbit and The Hollow Crown make his transition to the GOT realm seamless, but he’d be a hit even if we had never seen him in fantasy scenes.

7. Conor McGregor

The man they call Notorious is all about fighting, money and flash, so if the price and role were right, why wouldn’t he consider a spot on GOT? The answer is he probably would, and boy, does he look the part. A true Wildling if we’ve ever seen one outside of Game of Thrones, the brash and vivacious McGregor could be perfect for a bit role. He’d be perfect as a Wildling soldier in combat and while he wouldn’t deserve a huge role, he’d be about as fun a cameo as we can think of.

The fact that there were even only adds spice to the possibility.

8. Jennifer Lawrence

This might be another actor that could be tripped up in the accent department, but Lawrence is one of the hottest young stars in Hollywood and has really turned into a fine actress.

Precisely how seamless of a fit she would be is debatable, but we know she can hold her own as far as action, fighting and acting goes, as the Hunger Games trilogy probably tell us all we need to know.

9. Christoph Waltz

Waltz is absolutely worth considering for a future Game of Thrones role, as he can play both sides of the fight and has an impressive history in period pieces. He has his own defined accent, but has proven he can play all kinds of roles – whether they be devilishly delightful or genuinely heartfelt.

Waltz has already risen to iconic status for his stays in Inglourious Basterds and Django Unchained and could be amazing in the right spot in the final season of GOT.

10. Patrick Stewart

British actors in general feel look like an easy fit in Game of Thrones, so why not take a stab at one of the most iconic options out there? Stewart is best remembered for his days with the X-Men and Star Trek, but he can still deliver stoic and memorable performances even at the ripe age of 75.

Stewart has the presence, command and range to play a man in high power and could be quite a sight to see in the show’s final season.

11. Anthony Hopkins

From one amazing HBO role to another, right? Hopkins appeared in the entertaining (and mind boggling) Westworld and it’d be great if the aging icon could make a stop over at GOT before the series ends.

Hopkins has destroyed (in a good way) every role he’s ever taken on and would be extremely convincing as a new man with power in the final season. He wouldn’t need to be around for long, but however long we’d get to see him would only enhance Game of Thrones.

12. Tom Hiddleston

We’ve seen Hiddleston rise up the ranks rather quickly, and he’s another accomplished actor that would qualify for Game of Thrones when you look at his resume, voice and appearance.

We’ve seen him tote a sword as the crazy Loki in the Thor and Avengers films and he has proven he can play a merciless villain or a trustworthy good guy. We tend to hope for the former if he ever makes it on Game of Thrones.

13. Liam Neeson

Neeson is another iconic presence that would both be deserving of a GOT nod, and would also repay the show with a flawless performance. He’s been doing mostly blockbuster shoot-em up movies these days, but we’ve long been aware of Leeson’s voice, command and range.

Neeson could play any number of roles, as he’s been battle tested when it comes to fighting and he can effectively play either a villain or do-gooder.

14. Danny Dyer

It’s open for debate if Dyer would be a great fit on Game of Thrones, but he certainly wants to prove he can be. Best known for his time on EastEnders, Dyer is said to have attempted (thrice) to get on Game of Thrones, with no success. Perhaps he will find the right role finally before the show wraps things up with season eight.

15. Benicio Del Toro

It’d be nice to switch things up a bit if Game of Thrones decided to add some true star power for their 8th and final season, and Del Toro could make good sense. He’s a change of pace to a lot of these other options and the accent he’d use would be up in the air, but he’s got a commanding presence, impressive wit and underrated range.

Del Toro has taken on many challenging roles and was absolutely riveting in Sicario. Perhaps he could be some type of bounty hunter or villain that one of our favorite characters befriends or runs into.

16. Damian Lewis

Lewis is another fine Brit who would excel in GOT. He has played a wide range of characters and probably wouldn’t mind speaking in his native tongue after being forced to play so many American characters. He has the look and feel of a Westeros combatant and as we’ve seen over the course of his career, he has no problems playing either side.

17. Lennie James

James is a bit busy on another iconic show these days (The Walking Dead), but maybe in the next season or so some time opens up for him. Particulars aside, James is a fine actor who provides some sharp wit, a commanding presence and solid range. James has proven his fighting chops on TWD and talked up a storm in Snatch.

18. Charlie Hunnam

Known best for his days on Sons of Anarchy, Hunnam is no stranger to powerful roles, violence and death. He has a commanding gaze and can deliver in dramatic situations, so everything considered, he’d be a fine choice for the final stretch of Game of Thrones.

19. Hugh Jackman

It’d be ideal to see Wolverine dive into Game of Thrones with his claws ready to rip people up on the battlefield, but just the Aussie with elite acting chops would do just as well. Jackman has proven over time that he can perform the dramatic roles as well as the ones that require a ripped physique and high levels of action, which could make him good for a reserved role of power or one as a warrior.

20. Andrew Lincoln

If Lennie James can take a stab at GOT, then Rick Grimes deserves a nod, too. The British actor has been magnificent for years as the main character in The Walking Dead, but because of his success in that role we really haven’t had the luxury to enjoy him elsewhere.

Funny enough, he has the acting experience, accent, look and experience in action sequences to be perfect for GOT. Nailing the right role and finding the right time to make it work would be the real struggle.

21. Daniel Day-Lewis

DDL tends to pick his projects very carefully and fully submerges himself into roles, so it might be difficult to pry him from his latest endeavour for a short-lived role on the final season of Game of Thrones. It would surely be worth it, of course, as the legendary Brit has smashed every role he’s seen and may best be remembered for flat out riveting takes in There Will Be Blood and Gangs of New York.

22. Tom Hardy

Hardy has been all over the place since rising up the ranks thanks to his breakout role in Inception, and it’d be no surprise if this British stud ended up taking a stroll into Westeros. A truly elite acting talent, Hardy is arguably the face of Hollywood these days, as he has no problem crushing blockbuster roles or taking on unique projects he can’t find a way to turn down.

Turns in Peaky Blinders, The Revenant and Taboo – just to name a few – display his raw talent, range and clear command. He could excel in any GOT role you choose, but may be best suited to play a Wildling we’ve yet to run into.

23. Michael Caine

We don’t have to get an iconic British actor to enhance the final season of Game of Thrones, but if it’s anyone close to Michael Caine, it sure wouldn’t hurt. Caine is aging and may not have the time and interest here, but he would certainly be a worthy addition and could nail any role asked of him.

We’ve seen some old wise men in this show and with characters dying off at a rapid rate (and that likely to continue in season 7), there could be a spot opening up for the final run. Caine could more than fill it out.

24. Kate Winslet

It’s tough to envision any more females rising to higher power than we’ve seen already on Game of Thrones, but one more wouldn’t hurt, right? Winslet wouldn’t even have to rule, either. She’s got the range and versatility to play any type of role, while we’ve also seen her in period pieces.

Winslet still dials in as one of the best actresses in Hollywood and would fit perfectly in any storyline laid out for her in Westeros.

25. Cate Blanchett

If it’s going to be the final season of Game of Thrones, why not aim high and get as many iconic faces as possible? While getting all of these actors is impossible, the GOT casting department should at least consider a few, and stopping before giving Cate Blanchett a call would be ill advised.

Blanchett is probably one of the most versatile performers on this list and sports the look, voice and demeanor to nail any role Game of Thrones could toss her way. We know she has the goods based on her time in The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit.

That does it for our favorite 25 actors that should be on Game of Thrones. We did leave out some great options, of course, as the likes of Angelina Jolie, Brad Pitt, Leonardo DiCaprio, Don Cheadle and so many more are either perfectly capable of delivering a powerful performance and/or nailing the right accent for the job.

However, the 25 options we liked best were good enough to edge them out and for one reason or another, they had a better look or feel to them for this specific show. Hopefully some of your personal picks made our list.

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