R’hllor the Lord of Light has many and varied followers across the Seven Kingdoms. So many, in fact, that HBO’s Game of Thrones is adding an all-new Red Priestess for the upcoming season. Despite the five known Red Priests from George R.R. Martin’s ongoing series, it seems that David Benioff and D.B. Weiss are creating a new character for Season 6, even if she’s not exactly conjured up out of whole crimson cloth.
As Deadline initially reported, up-and-coming English actor Melanie Liburd has been cast as a Red Priestess for the next run of episodes for HBO’s award-winning series. Not to worry, Liburd doesn’t seem to be replacing Carice van Houten, who plays the inflammatory Red Priestess Melisandre. Instead, as Game of Thrones fan site Los Siete Reinos reveals (via Watchers on the Wall) through set photos in Spain and a leaked audition script, it looks like Liburd will be playing the beautiful and magnetic priestess, Kinvara. The audition dialogue goes on to introduce the character as “High Priestess of the Red Temple of Volantis, the Flametruth, the light of wisdom, the first servant of the Lord of the Light.” That should come as a red flag to book readers.
Before we get to that, take a look at Liburd on set below:
— Watchers on the Wall (@WatchersOTWall) October 4, 2015
Sure, the Red Temple of Volantis is pulled from the source material, but the High Priest in the books is a man named Benerro. Things get a little spoilery from here on out so if you’d rather not know any more, it’s best to stop reading. In the books, Benerro is a big proponent of raising Daenerys Targaryen up as the reborn hero of R’hllor, Azor Ahai. He preaches this message to his legions of followers, which upsets the ruling class though they’re powerless to stop him. Covertly, Benerro sends another of his priests, Moqorro, as an emissary to Daenerys.
In the show, as far as this audition script can be believed, Kinvara has traveled to Mereen at the request Tyrion and, to a lesser extent, Varys. Tyrion wants the priestess’s help in getting her followers to convince the Mereenese that Daenerys is the savior of the people. Luckily, Kinvara already believes this to be true so she’s on board, even if Varys doubts her veracity as a prophet and mystic. Her reply to the master of whispers apparently hits close to home, unnerving the normally steadfast wordsmith. If it all plays out according to this script, it should prove to be an interesting scene that establishes Daeny’s story arc, even in her absence from Mereen. Unfortunately we’ll have to wait until April to find out one way or the other.
Click any of the following links below for more on the upcoming season of Game of Thrones:
- George R.R. Martin Says There Will Be a ‘Game of Thrones’ Movie, But There’s a Twist [Updated]
- Why Did ‘Game of Thrones’ Win the Emmy for Its Worst Season?
- ‘The Collider TV Podcast’: Ep. 3 – ‘Bastard Executioner,’ ‘Game of Thrones,’ Emmys
- ‘Game of Thrones’: Kit Harington Accidentally Says Too Much Regarding Jon Snow
- ‘Game of Thrones’ Season 6 Adds ‘Babadook’ Star Essie Davis
- ‘Game of Thrones’ Season 6 Adds Richard E. Grant