This casting news requires you to be familiar with a thing that happened in the fourth season of Game Of Thrones—the one before the most recent one—so we’ll do our best to recap the pertinent details before we get into this. When we last saw Bran, the second-littlest Stark, he was being carried up to a mysterious magical tree beyond The Wall. When he got there, a bunch of Ray Harryhausen-style skeletons attacked and killed the kid from Love Actually, but then Bran made it inside this weird cave where the skeletons couldn’t follow. Inside, he met an elderly tree man who was actually the three-eyed raven that had been appearing in his dreams since season one. They had a conversation about magical stuff, Bran asked if he’ll be able to walk again, and the three-eyed raven (who looks like a man, but that’s what they call him) said no, “but you will fly.” Boom, end of season, to be continued in two years.
In that appearance, the human version of the three-eyed raven was played by Struan Rodger, but Entertainment Weekly is reporting that he’s been replaced by Max von Sydow for Game Of Thrones upcoming sixth season—which will air at some point next year. He reportedly won’t be seen in the show very much, but he and the recently cast Ian McShane will be “crucial in their own way.” Hopefully von Sydow’s role is more crucial than the last guy’s, though, because he got overshadowed by some cheesy skeleton soldiers.