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'Game of Thrones' Season 5 Premieres Tonight (April Spoilers)

Peter Dinklage stars as Tyrion Lannister in Game of Thrones.
Jon Snow is struggling to balance the demands of the Night’s Watch with those of the newly arrived Stannis Baratheon, who styles himself the rightful king of Westeros. Meanwhile, Cersei scrambles to hold on to power in King’s Landing amidst the Tyrells and the rise of a religious group led by the enigmatic High Sparrow, while Jaime embarks on a secret mission. Across the Narrow Sea, Arya seeks an old friend and a fugitive Tyrion finds a new cause. And as danger mounts in Meereen, Daenerys finds that her tenuous hold on the city requires hard sacrifices.

The Emmy- and Golden Globe-winning Game of Thrones returns for its ten-episode fifth season Sunday, April 12 (9:00-10:00 p.m. ET/PT), exclusively on HBO, followed by other episodes on subsequent Sundays at the same time. Based on the bestselling fantasy book series by George R.R. Martin, the hit series is an epic story of treachery and nobility set on the continent of Westeros, where summers and winters can last years, and only the lust for power is eternal.

Returning series regulars on Game of Thrones this season include: Emmy and Golden Globe winner Peter Dinklage (Tyrion Lannister), Nikolaj Coster-Waldau (Jaime Lannister), Lena Headey (Cersei Lannister), Emilia Clarke (Daenerys Targaryen), Aidan Gillen (Petyr “Littlefinger” Baelish), Kit Harington (Jon Snow), Diana Rigg (Lady Olenna Tyrell), Natalie Dormer (Margaery Tyrell), Maisie Williams(Arya Stark) and Sophie Turner(Sansa Stark).

Additional returning series regulars this season include: Alfie Allen (Theon Greyjoy), John Bradley (Samwell Tarly), Dean-Charles Chapman (Tommen), Gwendoline Christie (Brienne of Tarth), Liam Cunningham (Davos Seaworth), Stephen Dillane (Stannis Baratheon), Nathalie Emmanuel (Missandei), Jerome Flynn (Bronn), Iain Glen (Jorah Mormont), Conleth Hill (Varys), Kristofer Hivju (Tormund Giantsbane), Michiel Huisman (Daario Naharis), Michael McElhatton (Roose Bolton), Iwan Rheon (Ramsay Snow),Carice van Houten (Melisandre) and Indira Varma (Ellaria Sand).

New cast members for the fifth season include: Jonathan Pryce (the High Sparrow), Alexander Siddig (Doran Martell), DeObia Oparei (Areo Hotah), Keisha Castle-Hughes (Obara Sand), Rosabell Laurenti Sellers (Tyene Sand), Jessica Henwick (Nym Sand), Nell Tiger Free (Myrcella Baratheon) and Toby Sebastian (Trystane Martell).



April Episode Preview

Episode #41: “The Wars to Come”

Debut: Sunday, April 12 (9:00-10:00 p.m. ET/PT)

Other HBO playdates: April 12 (11:30 p.m., 2:00 a.m.), 13 (12:30 a.m.), 14 (9:00 p.m., 4:05 a.m.), 15 (3:45 a.m.), 16 (10:00 p.m.), 17 (9:00 p.m.), 18 (1:15 a.m.) and 24 (8:00 p.m.)

HBO2 playdates: April 13 (9:00 p.m.), 17 (2:00 a.m.), 18 (5:00 p.m.) and 19 (8:00 p.m.)

Cersei (Lena Headey) and Jaime (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) adjust to a world without Tywin. Varys (Conleth Hill) reveals a conspiracy to Tyrion (Peter Dinklage). Daenerys (Emilia Clarke) faces a new threat to her rule. Jon (Kit Harington) is caught between two kings.

Written by David Benioff & D. B. Weiss; directed by Michael Slovis.

Episode #42: “The House of Black and White”

Debut: Sunday, April 19 (9:00-10:00 p.m.)

Other HBO playdates: April 19 (11:30 p.m., 2:00 a.m.), 20 (10:15 p.m.), 21 (9:00 p.m., 2:30 a.m.), 22 (11:50 p.m.), 23 (10:00 p.m.), 24 (9:00 p.m.) and 25 (1:50 a.m.), and May 1 (8:00 p.m.)

HBO2 playdates: April 20 (9:00 p.m.), 24 (2:00 a.m.), 25 (12:45 p.m.) and 26 (8:00 p.m.)

Arya (Maisie Williams) arrives in Braavos. Pod (Daniel Portman) and Brienne (Gwendoline Christie) run into trouble on the road. Cersei fears for her daughter’s safety in Dorne as Ellaria Sand (Indira Varma) seeks revenge for Oberyn’s death. Stannis (Stephen Dillane) tempts Jon. An advisor tempts Daenerys.

Written by David Benioff & D. B. Weiss; directed by Michael Slovis.

Episode #43: “High Sparrow”

Debut: Sunday, April 26 (9:00-10:00 p.m.)

Other HBO playdates: April 26 (11:30 p.m., 2:00 a.m.), 27 (11:15 p.m.), 28 (9:00 p.m., 2:30 a.m.), 29 (1:45 a.m.) and 30 (10:00 p.m.), and May 1 (9:00 p.m.), 2 (10:00 p.m.) and 8 (8:00 p.m.)

HBO2 playdate: April 27 (9:00 p.m.)

In King’s Landing, Queen Margaery (Natalie Dormer) enjoys her new husband. Tyrion and Varys walk the Long Bridge of Volantis.

Written by David Benioff & D. B. Weiss; directed by Mark Mylod.

Among the critical praise for the fourth season, the Los Angeles Times called Game of Thrones “the Best Television Show Ever,” adding that “no other series comes close,” and “television just doesn’t get any better than this,” while Newsday hailed the series as “still TV’s best,” awarding the show an A+. The Hollywood Reporter observed, “The consistency of excellence in Game of Thrones is truly something to behold,” and the San Francisco Chronicle described it as “great and addictive.”

In Aug. 2014, Game of Thrones received four Emmys, for Outstanding Art Direction for a Contemporary or Fantasy Series (Single-Camera); Outstanding Costumes for a Series; Outstanding Prosthetic Makeup for a Series, Miniseries, Movie or a Special; and Outstanding Special and Visual Effects.

In Sept. 2013, the show received two Emmys, including Outstanding Makeup for a Single-Camera Series (Non-Prosthetic) and Outstanding Special Visual Effects.

In Sept. 2012, the show received six Emmys, tied for the most of any program, including Outstanding Art Direction for a Single-Camera Series, Outstanding Costumes for a Series, Outstanding Makeup for a Single-Camera Series (Non-Prosthetic), Outstanding Sound Editing for a Series, Outstanding Sound Mixing for a Comedy or Drama Series (One Hour) and Outstanding Special Visual Effects.

In Sept. 2011, the show received two Emmys, for Outstanding Main Title Design and Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series for Peter Dinklage, who also received a Golden Globe for Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Series, Mini-Series or Motion Picture Made for Television.

The executive producers of Game of Thrones are David Benioff, D.B. Weiss, Carolyn Strauss, Frank Doelger and Bernadette Caulfield; co-executive producers, Guymon Casady, Vince Gerardis and George R.R. Martin; producers, Chris Newman, Greg Spence, Lisa McAtackney and Bryan Cogman.

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