"Game of Thrones" has announced 14 new faces that will appear in the upcoming third season. Moderating the show's panel at San Diego Comic-Con on Friday, July 13, author/co-executive producer George R. R. Martin kicked it off by playing an introductory reel featuring some of the new cast members.
Diana Rigg, who is known for her portrayal of Emma Peel on 1960s TV series "The Avengers", takes the role of Olenna Tyrell aka The Queen of Thorns, who is Margaery Tyrell's sharp-witted grandmother. Mackenzie Crook, who landed roles in "Pirates of the Caribbean" films and British "The Office", will play wildling raider Orell.
Clive Russell is takling the part of Bryndon "The Blackfish" Tully, who is Catelyn Stark's uncle. Meanwhile, Catelyn's younger brother Edmure Tully will be played by Tobias Menzies. Thomas Brodie-Sangster and Ellie Kendirck will be seen as Jojen and Meera Reed respectively. Jojen is an important ally to Bran Stark.
Landing the role of child slave Missande is Nathalie Emannuel, while young actress Kerry Ingram is cast as Stannis Baratheon's only child, Shireen. Playing Stannis' wife Selyse Florent will be Tara Fitzgerald.
Paul Kaye joins the cast as Thoros of Myr, who is a Red Priest. The character is also a key member of the outlaw group Brotherhood Without Banners. Another member of the Brotherhood Without Banners, Anguy, will be tackled by Philip McGinley. Meanwhile, the group's leader Beric Dondarrion will be portrayed by Richard Dormer.
Kristofer Hivju lands the role of Tormund Giantsbane, a wildling warrior and chief lieutenant of the King Beyond the Wall, Mance Rayder. Last but not least, Anton Lesser is cast as Qyburn, a former maester of the Citadel.
Commenting on the expanding cast ensemble, Martin enthused, "We were already the biggest cast in television and we have just grown bigger - so clearly I need to start killing characters more quickly to make room for the new ones!"
"Game of Thrones" season 3 is slated to debut on March 31, 2013. The cast and crew have begun filming earlier this month, with the production returning to Belfast, Croatia and Iceland. Morocco is added as the fourth country for the shooting location.