Two more players have joined in HBO’s Game of Thrones, landing the key roles of Stannis Baratheon and Melisandre in the second season of the Emmy-nominated fantasy.
Entertainment Weekly reports that English actor Stephen Dillane, who co-starred as Thomas Jefferson in the cable network’s John Adams miniseries, will portray the elder of King Robert’s younger brothers (we met the youngest, Renly, in Season 1). A brooding and humorless man who’s quick to take offense, Lord Stannis emerges as one of the contenders for the Iron Throne.
Dutch actress Carice van Houten, best known for her roles in Valkyrie and Repo Men, will play the priestess of a new religion to Westeros — R’hllor, the Lord of Light — who believes Stannis is a messianic figure foretold by prophecy. Using her prophetic powers, Lady Melisandre counsels Stannis while putting those who resist the new faith to flames.
News of the new casting comes as the drama’s producers and stars descend on Comic-Con International in San Diego for a Thursday panel moderated by author George R.R. Martin.