In one of the most anticipated castings for Game of Thrones’ Season 4 (at least for book fans), HBO has revealed to Entertainment Weekly that Prince Oberyn Martell has been cast. The Dornish Prince, aka The Red Viper, will be played by Chilean actor Pedro Pascal.
Pascal, who is mostly known at the moment for lengthy guest spots on Red Widow and Graceland, won the part after extensive casting by series showrunners and creators David Benioff and Dan Weiss.
“This was a tough one,” Benioff and Weiss said to EW in a statement. “The Red Viper is sexy and charming, yet believably dangerous; intensely likable, yet driven by hate. The Boys love him, the girls love him, and he loves them all back. Unless your last name is Lannister.”
A brief spoiler-free background on Martell would be to say that he is a brash, charismatic and endlessly dangerous (manipulative) game player from Dorne, the desert lands of Westeros. His sister Ella was married to Rhaegar Targaryen, son of Mad King Aerys, when Tywin Lannister took King’s Landing in Robert Baratheon’s name during Robert’s Rebellion. Because of that association, Ella was raped and murdered by Gregor Clegane (the Mountain) and her children beaten to death in front of her on Tywin’s order, though no one can prove it. Think Inigo Montoya in The Princess Bride.
Let’s just say that despite sitting out the War of the Five Kings and coming to celebrate Joffrey’s wedding to Margaery Tyrell, that Oberyn has no love lost for the Lannisters or the men and women beneath them.
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