'Game Of Thrones' weapons specialist talks season 8: ‘Think big and multiply it by a billion’
Natalia Lee has worked on the show since the very first episode
Whenever you merely mention Game Of Thrones’ eighth and final season to a member of its cast and crew their mood instantly changes.
Suddenly, they become nervous that they are about to say something that they shouldn’t, or, horror of horrors, reveal a huge spoiler. Natalia Lee, “Game Of Thrones’s” armorer and weapons specialist who has worked on the show since the pilot, was no exception when I recently spoke to her.
In fact, as soon as I brought up “Game Of Thrones” season 8, Lee admitted, “I am so scared that a swat team is going to fly through the window.”
“I am really convinced that there is a branch of Homeland Security that is in charge of ‘Game Of Thrones’ leaks. I have no idea how they do it. It is crazy how they stop anything from being leaked in this day and age.”
Then Lee insisted, “All I can say is think big and multiply it by a billion.”
But rather than hunting for spoilers, after working on it for so long, I was eager to know how Lee felt that the show was coming to an end.
“I can speak for a lot of the cast and crew. It has been a very long journey. It has been 8 years for me. Because I was there since the pilot, preparing budgets, breaking it down, starting my armory workshop and all the rest.”
“It has been a huge journey. For a lot of us it has been the end. You have to look at it as we are happy to move forward and do other things and be challenged.”
“But it is sad. We are like a family. I have shot on glaciers in the middle of Iceland to deserts in Spain and Morocco, and on fortress walls. For me it was a masterclass of filmmaking. It is the best of the best. The hardest thing is that we have set a benchmark, and we are not going to top anything like this again in our careers.”
There hasn’t been much difference in Lee’s approach to the final season, though, as she admitted that it has been pretty much “business as usual.”
“It feels like the same. We have a rhythm and a pattern when we pack up. For me, for my job, I can be there all year. I might just have a month or two break. So it is quite long. A lot of us go all the way through, because we maintain workshops and then start prepping.”
“It still took on the same length of time for us. Might just be editing and with CGI or something else like that that has taken longer. Realistically we still have a routine and worked all the way through.”
“It has been business as usual really. We have perfected how to produce tens of thousands of soldiers for battle and stuff like that. We have learnt how to do huge TV battles, and win Emmys, and make them bigger and bigger.”
“Sometimes you are scared that one season will require more work than another. But it kind of levels out. Definitely at the start that was the hardest because we had to form entire new armies, all of them.”
“You might have 5 or 10 different houses, and you had to visually differentiate between them, all from scratch, we had to build them up. Plus there was like 10 or 20 new characters, who all had to have something unique.”
At this point, Lee provided her final bit of information regarding “Game Of Thrones” season 8. “We know the storylines now. It is survival of the fittest. There’s only a few left standing. Anyone and everyone can die.”
We’ll finally get to see who survives and who wins the “Game Of Thrones” when season 8 airs at some point in 2019.