Respected British actor Jim Broadbent has been cast for the seventh and penultimate season of Game of Thrones.
Broadbent is a veteran of stage, television and film, having won a Oscar, a BAFTA and a Golden Globe. In 2002 he was named an OBE, but turned it down.
Casual viewers will recognise him as Horace Slughorn from the Harry Potter movies, but he has also appeared in films such as Iris, Hot Fuzz, Time Bandits, Brazil (alongside Game of Thrones actor Jonathan Pryce), The Crying Game, Moulin Rouge, Gangs of New York and Cloud Atlas. On television he was a mainstay of British comedy programmes for most of the 1980s and 1990s, but has also appeared in drama series.
HBO have declined to say who Broadbent will be playing. At this point we are so far off-book it's hard to pick out a role, but I do wonder if we'll be seeing more flashbacks to the Mad King Aerys Targaryen. Broadbent would do excellently in that role. And yes, that role was cast with another actor in Season 6 (itself the second time the role had been cast, as he'd been cast for Season 1 for scenes ultimately cut out of the show) but that's hardly stopped HBO before.
Another possibility might be that Broadbent is playing either the new Grand Maester or the new High Septon (both are needed after the explosive Season 6 finale), or possibly a new maester at Winterfell. Another possibility is that he is playing a Northern lord. Finally, he could be an Archmaester at the Citadel, potentially Marwyn if that character is being retained?
We'll find out next summer when Game of Thrones returns.