The Game of Thrones cast reunites for 3 Body Problem

Calista Alma
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March 21, 2024

If you delve into IMDb for 3 Body Problem, you’ll discover a significant presence of Game of Thrones alumni behind the scenes, from production designer Deborah Riley to composer Ramin Djawadi. According to David Benioff and D.B. Weiss, many individuals from their time filming in Belfast were involved in this new Netflix sci-fi series.

Adapted from Liu Cixin’s Remembrance of Earth’s Past book series, the show, co-created with Alex Woo, begins during China’s Cultural Revolution in the 1960s. It follows a government sect’s quest to contact extraterrestrial life, with one woman’s decision shaping the future. In the present day, aliens target some of the world’s brightest minds.

While John Bradley, Liam Cunningham, and Jonathan Pryce are easily recognizable Game of Thrones stars in 3 Body Problem, there are even more veterans from the series making appearances in this adaptation.

After his role as Samwell Tarly in Game of Thrones, Bradley takes on the character of Jack Rooney in 3 Body Problem, part of the Oxford 5—a group involved in extraterrestrial matters.

“We wrote [the part] for him before we even told him,” Weiss explains.

“We said, ‘Don’t take another job. We have something for you,'” Benioff adds.

Unlike his scientific peers, Jack isn’t from the academic world. Instead, he used his physics degree to start a snack food business. Although Jack’s role in the novels was smaller, Weiss and Benioff expanded it for Bradley.

Reflecting on their decision to cast Bradley, Benioff recalls, “We saw John talking to an American tourist who recognized him from the show. The real John is very funny, very caustic, sarcastic. We also had the pleasure of going to the Oxford Speakers Union. It was the two of us, Kit Harington, and John. We ended up letting John do about 70 percent of the talking because he’s so much funnier than the rest of us, and so smart.”

Cunningham, initially tied to another project, shifted to 3 Body Problem after being offered a role. Known for his Ser Davos portrayal, he now plays Wade, the head of a global intelligence operation addressing the alien threat.

“Liam was a natural fit,” Weiss remarked during a Los Angeles screening event. “His talent and charm make him perfect for the role.”

Pryce, known for his role as the High Sparrow in Game of Thrones, shifts gears to tackle a new challenge in the galactic realm.

Having caused turmoil in Westeros, Pryce now embodies Mike Evans, an enigmatic figure described as an environmentalist turned oil tycoon by Netflix.

Benioff expressed their desire to collaborate with other Game of Thrones alumni, emphasizing the importance of finding the right roles. They hope to continue creating shows and possibly bring more familiar faces back for future projects.

Despite his disguise, the recognizable Conleth Hill, known for his role as Lord Varys in Game of Thrones, makes a cameo appearance in 3 Body Problem. In a brief role, Hill portrays a version of the Pope within an alien-created virtual reality game, sharing a scene with Hong and Bradley.

“We thought it would be amusing to have Conleth, who is Catholic, play the Pope,” Weiss explains. “Thankfully, he found it humorous.”

Benioff reminisces about Hill’s commitment to attending Sunday services during their travels for Game of Thrones, highlighting his dedication to his faith. Regarding Hill’s role as the Pope, Benioff assures that it is not sacrilegious, as the character is a fictional portrayal within an alien setting unrelated to the Catholic Church.

Bradley recently disclosed another Game of Thrones alum joining the cast: Mark Gatiss. Gatiss, known for his role as Tycho Nestoris, portrays a character within the video game scenes alongside Hong and Bradley.

In Game of Thrones, Gatiss portrayed Tycho Nestoris, a representative of the Iron Bank in Braavos. Interestingly, Benedict Wong, Cunningham’s co-star in 3 Body Problem, was also considered for a role as a banker in the same scene with Ser Davos and Stannis Baratheon.

“I was considered for a banker role,” Wong shared with EW, reminiscing about the missed opportunity. “You would’ve been in a scene with me!” Cunningham exclaimed, recalling the Braavos bank setting.

3 Body Problem premieres on Netflix on March 21.

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