Game of Thrones had many filming locations that had become iconic thanks to the show like Dubrovnik, Croatia. House of the Dragon takes place on the same continent as its predecessor but set 200 years in the past. As a result, the show isn’t filming at the same places in reality despite being set at those same locales, particularly Kings Landing. The locations would look different before 300 years of progress within the world, so it makes sense. Additionally, because of the focus on the Targaryans in this series, Game of Thrones original production home of Northern Ireland has been dropped in favour of England likely due to the North playing a smaller role in this story.
Primarily, the show has been shot in England. In April 2021, there was a two week shoot in Cornwall. In particular Holywell Bay Beach and Kynance Cove have been used as exterior shots for what might be Dragonstone, but that hasn’t been confirmed.
What has been somewhat confirmed is that St Michael’s Mount in Cornwall is being used as the location for Driftmark, the ancestral home of the Velaryons, large players in the Dance of the Dragons.
The crew returned to Cornwall in September 2021 to film what is believed to be a battle set in the Stepstones. An extensive army camp had been constructed at Kyncave Cove that suggests this.
Castleton, Derbyshire in northern England has been reported as a location thanks to keen eyed observers who spotted Matt Smith (Daemon Targaryen) in costume. Other locations used here were Cave Dale, Eldon Hill Quarry, and Mam Tor, according to Peter Morris, the landlord of the Bulls Head Hotel in Castleton. What these locations are supposed to be in Westeros is, unfortunately, anyone’s guess.
Caesar’s Camp, on the border between Surrey and Hampshire, was used in September 2021. There is no confirmation as to what this location was used for, but there were reports that tourney scenes were being shot there. A large set was built within the tress of Aldershot with a range of tents. Another battle? Possibly.
Most of the show, however, has been shot at Warner Bros. Leavesden Studios in Watford, England. At least, this is what was used for most of the interior shots. They have built traditional sets here but more interestingly, they have built a state-of-the-art LED video stage that allows the crew to add real-time backgrounds to scenes.
When it comes to storytelling, leaning into the future is a ton of fun. One example is this massive virtual production stage we created earlier this yr at @WBSLeavesden lot outside London. Game of Thrones: House of the Dragon currently uses this amazing tech. A game changer. 🎬 pic.twitter.com/6A0S27JV3O— Jason Kilar (@jasonkilar) December 16, 2021
Two towns in the Extramadura region of Spain, Caceres and Trujillo, are used for several exterior scenes at Kings Landing. What happened to Dubrovnik? Despite being famously associated with Game of Thrones, Dubrovnik was actually replaced by the medieval town of Caceres with additional shots being picked up from Trujillo from season 7 onwards. It’s a good choice (one of the few made in the final seasons) because how many of you actually noticed?
Not only this, but Oprah Daily reported that the in the Spanish municipality of La Calahorra, night shoots were discovered where flares and explosions were seen. We can infer that this might be the location for a battle sequence.
Filming took place at the hilltop village of Monsanto particularly at the castle of Penha Garcia. The castle is now in ruins so what they have used it for remains to be seen but it’s possible that the castle was used as Kings Landing humble origins? Possibly even the cursed Harrenhal? Doubtful given the sunny disposition of the town but that’s nothing a little movie magic can’t fix.
For more, House of the Dragon showrunners confirm that sexual violence will not be depicted onscreen.
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