Game of Thrones’ Dragons are Just Tennis Balls on Sticks (VIDEO)
Dany and Drogon on Game of Thrones Season 5 Finale
Credit: HBO © 2015 Home Box Office    

Game of Thrones

Game of Thrones’ Dragons are Just Tennis Balls on Sticks (VIDEO)

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Emilia Clarke got her third Emmy nomination for Game of Thrones this year, and the Academy should just give her a trophy already. Anyone who can keep a straight face while co-starring with tennis balls deserves an award.

You see, given that dragons aren’t actually real, the 29-year-old Daenerys portrayer had to act opposite tennis balls on sticks — and pretend those props are her character’s fearsome dragons.

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Check out the fakery in this Wired video detailing the work of VFX company Pixomondo.

Director Miguel Sapochnik, who helmed a huge dragon sequence for Season 6’s Battle of Meereen, explained the CGI switcheroo in a recent New York Times piece.

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“The dragon on set is essentially a 14-foot green pole with a little green ball on the top of it. More often than not, it was me swinging it around and shouting cues for people to know the dragon was passing over them; the ball was there for an eye line,” he said.

Believe it or not, these tennis balls actually get the Game of Thrones cast and crew buzzing with anticipation.

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“Amazingly, somehow when the dragon’s on set — which, again, is literally a pole — people get excited,” Miguel added.

“Most of the people who work on the show, and even the extras in whatever country you go to, they tend to be massive fans of the show. They all know what the dragon looks like, so it’s not hard to get the excitement level up.”