Game of Thrones isn’t just a fantasy series of novels or generation-defining TV show; it’s also a project that brought together more than few best friends for life. Of the at least the things you didn’t know about your fave Game of Thrones actors, you probably know about best friendships, romances, and a few matching tattoos — but did you know about the professional musicians? Or the lone American in the cast? Or which one has a sibling whose catchy hit more than a decade ago embarrassed the whole family? That’s the good stuff.
With so much time left until Game of Thrones Season 8 premieres — HBO may release it as late as Spring 2019, ouch — it’s all fans can do to keep up with the new and exciting things in the lives of its stars. Well, maybe not “new,” per se, but at the very least, exciting. Remember how you felt the first time you watched that Instagram video of the Brotherhood Without Banners goofing around on guitars while in costume? Hopefully, this list will give off those vibes. Instead of, say, Ice Viserion vibes. Because that’s no good. Sorry for even bringing it up.
Here are incredible things you probably never knew about your favorite Game of Thrones actors:
1. Rose Leslie & Kit Harington’s Family Connection
The IRL romance between Ygritte and Jon Snow can make just about anyone swoon. Or at least, it could. Both are descended from Scottish or English noblemen, which makes the pair distant cousins.
2. Alfie Allen’s Sister Wrote A Song About Him
His big sister is musician Lily Allen, which most people know by now. But back in 2007, when she was just bursting out onto the scene, Lily wrote a song about how much her brother Alfie smoked. It could have curtailed his career, but fortunately, it was never released as a major radio single.
3. Kristian Nairn’s Other Job
Kristian Nairn, a true gentle giant, tours the globe when he’s not acting. He’s an in-demand EDM and House DJ who spins under the name DJ Hodor, and happily plays Game of Thrones-themed events.
4. Sophie Turner’s Cute Instagram
X-Men star Turner spends a lot of her free time running an Instagram account for her dog, which she shares with fiancé Joe Jonas (of Jonas Brothers and D.N.C.E. fame).
5. Gwendoline Christie
Most people think of gymnasts as pint-sized, but it was the tall, stately actor’s first love. In fact, Christie only turned to acting as a creative outlet after injuring her spine during gymnastics, according to an interview with the UK publication Stylist.
6. Maisie Williams’ Real Name
Maisie is just a nickname! The actor’s full name is the delightfully old-fashioned Margaret Constance. Game of Thrones was her first-ever acting role, which is likely why it’s so special to her. She has matching tattoos with on-screen siblings Sophie Turner and Isaac Hempstead Wright as a result.
7. Ciaran Hinds & Tobias Menzies’ Other Guest Roles
The actors that play Mance Rayder and Edmure Tully have appeared together not once, not twice, but thrice: First in HBO’s Rome, then on Game of Thrones, and most recently, The Terror on AMC.
8. Nikolaj Coster-Waldau’s Wife
Coster-Waldau’s wife Nukaaka is a native of Greenland. Yes, Greenland! She’s a professional singer and used to compete in pageants. All hail Nukaaka Coster-Waldau.
9. Peter Dinklage’s Band
Dinklage, the only American actor on the show, was in a “punk-funk-rap” band for a while, according to Billboard. His college photos are amazing.
10. Isaac Hempstead Wright’s Sang This Song On Set
During the scenes where Hodor was carrying Bran Stark on his back, Wright would sing “Krusty Krab Pizza” from SpongeBob SquarePants and other similar nonsense in his ear the entire time they were filming, according to the Chicago Tribune.
11. Kit Harington’s Ancestry
His full name and lineage are rather posh: Christopher Catesby Harington is something like the 13th Baronet Harington, and his mother can trace her ancestry back to King Charles II.
12. Jacob Anderson’s Other Career
The actor better known as Greyworm has a flourishing rap career under the name Raleigh Ritchie.
13. Hannah Murray’s Other Roles
Her full name is Tegan Lauren-Hannah Murray, and she’s reportedly a proud vegetarian. Outside of Game of Thrones, she’s most often recognized for her work in Series 1 and 2 of Skins — a show that also launched the careers of Joe Dempsie (Gendry) and Daniel Kaluuya (Black Panther, Get Out).
14. Lena Headey’s Real-Life Look
In real life, she’s absolutely covered in tattoos and rocks a jet-black shaggy cut that would put Cersei’s iciest looks to shame.
15. Pedro Pascal’s BFF
He’s best friends with Lena Headey, according to BuzzFeed. Even if they haven’t appeared on the show together in years. Pascal was born in Chile and raised in Texas and California, so his Game of Thrones accent is all acting.
16. Michelle Fairley’s Hogwarts Life
In addition to some of the more obvious Harry Potter actors that populate the Game of Thrones cast, Lady Catelyn Stark’s role was small but significant. Fairley played the role of Hermione Granger’s mom in Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows, Part 1, in a wordless role that involved Hermione removing her existence from her parents’ memory in order to protect them from Voldemort. You know, casual, lighthearted stuff.
17. Thor Bjornsson’s Adorable Dog
He absolutely loves his Pomeranian and it is the purest and most precious thing on Earth. His name is Asterix and “The Mountain” and his wife run an Instagram account for him.
Hopefully, this list is enough to tide fans over between Game of Thrones Season 7 and the elusive Season 8. If not, there’s always that Pomeranian Instagram account to page through. Seriously, check that out.