Game Of Thrones delivered a massive shock in its final series when Arya Stark was the one who bumped off The Night King, but it turns out her path to get there nearly took a different route.
Director Miguel Sapochnik has revealed there was a whole “elaborate plan” for scenes building up to her sticking the knife into the baddie in The Long Night that eventually got changed.
Speaking to The Hollywood Reporter, Miguel said: “At one point there was an elaborate plan to have her fight her way into the Weirwood forest, but as we progressed we realised she’d already done that earlier in the episode, so it felt like a repeat.
“In the end we felt it didn’t matter how she got there – what mattered was setting up that moment when the Night King catches her mid-leap and we think she’s done for, then she pulls her knife switch and takes him out.”
He continued: “I questioned everything and we worked long and hard to find the right balance of credibility versus wish fulfilment. Then we shot it and reshot it and found that what was really important was rhythm.”
Many fans had expected Jon Snow to be on the one who ended the battle with the White Walkers, with it coming as a complete surprise that Maisie Williams’ character was ultimately responsible.
However, the episode in question drew criticism when it aired earlier this year, as some viewers claimed certain parts of the battle were too dark to view properly.
Responding to the complaints, Miguel stood by the episode, stating: “I think [cinematographer] Fabian Wagner did an outstanding job.”
Fabian previously hit back at the claims, telling TMZ: “We tried to give the viewers and fans a cool episode to watch. I know it wasn’t too dark because I shot it.”
According to the US site, Fabian advised fans to avoid watching the episode on their phones, claiming that streaming services often have poorer visual quality because the episodes are compressed.
The Long Night also broke records upon its debut, largely thanks to the 78 minute-long main battle scene, which is officially the longest in TV and film history – smashing the record previously set by the Battle Of Helm’s Deep in Lord Of The Rings: The Two Towers.
It also became the most-tweeted about episode of a scripted show in TV history.