Game of Thrones actor Richard Madden talks about the emotional goodbye he suffered after filming ‘The Red Wedding’ during season 3 of the show….
By Damon Martin — Editor/Lead Writer
Anyone that witnessed last year’s penultimate Game of Thrones episode ‘The Rains of Castamere’ still can’t wash the images of Robb Stark, Catelyn Stark, his wife and the rest of his banner men being slaughtered after being betrayed by Roose Bolton and Lord Walder Frey at an event that will forever be known as ‘The Red Wedding’.
The reaction of fans watching the mind blowing event managed to become a YouTube phenomenon and also ended up as a special feature on the recently released Game of Thrones season 3 boxset.
The Red Wedding stands as one of the most historic events in George R.R. Martin’s ‘A Song of Ice and Fire’ book series, and the translation to television had some in tears, others enraged, and all sad to see the Stark family once again ravaged and murdered in cold blood. The event also marked the end of the run on the television series for a few actors and actresses most notably Richard Madden, who played Robb Stark, and his mother on the show Catelyn, played by Michelle Fairley.
The last days on set during season 3 were particularly hard for Madden, who had come to look at his Game of Thrones cast mates like family and even though as an actor he knew ‘The Red Wedding’ would mark the end of his time on the show, it was still painful to say goodbye. Madden professes that once the final scenes were filmed and those infamous words ‘The Lannisters send their regards’ were uttered, his eyes filled with water as he said farewell to ‘The King in the North’.
“Yeah I cried a lot actually,” Madden said after filming finished. “I did cry on set with a few other people and it was the wrap party that day actually and I just got straight on the plane and I didn’t want to be there again. I did sit and cry on the way home and I had rows of people looking at me as if I was crazy.”
David Benoiff, one of the executive producers and show runners behind Game of Thrones, admitted he had never seen anything like the tear soaked goodbye Madden and the others got following the conclusion of filming for that episode. While cast members often leave television shows, Game of Thrones happens to employ the largest number of series regulars of any on television so instead of an actor or actress getting to know four or five people, Madden and Fairley ended up striking relationships with nearly 30 people over the course of three seasons.
“The crew was crying on set, which I had never seen before,” Benoiff said. “It’s such a testament to Michelle and Richard and everyone else and the performances that they gave that these fictional deaths had people on set who knew what was coming, it had them in tears.”
Season 4 of Game of Thrones will pick up on April 6 with the fallout from ‘The Red Wedding’ still being felt, but while the presence and memory of Robb Stark and his co-horts will live on forever, Madden will no longer portray him on screen. Madden has gone onto land roles in the miniseries ‘Klondike’ as well as the new live action ‘Cinderella’ movie from Disney, but Game of Thrones will certainly always hold a special place in his heart.
“It was so many years since we started the pilot, and some amazing friendships,” Madden said. “Some very great friends that I’m sad to not be seeing now. I’m missing that a lot.”
Relive ‘The Red Wedding’ now with Game of Thrones season 3, and make sure to return to Nerdcore Movement as we continue the countdown towards Game of Thrones season 4 debuting on April 6 on HBO.