Screenshot: Scheiffer Bates/YouTube

HBO made news last week when the story broke that it’s handing out big, big raises to the principal leads of its hit fantasy series Game Of Thrones. Peter Dinklage, Kit Harington, Lena Headey, Emilia Clarke, and Nikolaj Coster-Waldau will each apparently be getting at least $500,000 per episode for the final two seasons of the show. It doesn’t take a graduate of Wharton business school to know that that’s a lot of money to spend on a show about dragons and brooding. Especially when you consider that they probably could have gotten this guy to replace the whole cast for considerably less:

Pretty impressive impressions, no? That’s British comedian-voice actor Scheiffer Bates. Not sure what his normal rate, but it can’t be more than, like, $200 an hour. If you do the math and you consider the fact that it’d take longer because he’d be playing all the parts (so would probably spend a lot of time in hair and makeup), you’re looking at a decent-sized paycheck for this guy. But it’s not $2.5 million per episode (plus about $30, 000 for the rest of the cast). Maybe David Benioff and D.B. Weiss can even use some of the money they save to get Ghost back on the show once in a while.

It’s not like the suits at HBO even have an excuse for their shortsightedness on this matter. While the above video was uploaded well after the actors’ contracts were renegotiated, this guy had already made an appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live! more than a year ago. Right alongside their own Kit Harington. He must have told them about this at some point:

Come to think of it, maybe Harington purposefully didn’t tell them because he knew his job would be in jeopardy.

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[via Laughing Squid]