Throughout his career, Sheeran has had a few small acting roles, and his brief cameo on the first episode of Game of Thrones’ seventh season became a particularly infamous moment in the show’s run. Reflecting back on his cameo as a Lannister soldier, Sheeran explained how he landed the guest appearance and admitted that the “polarizing” reaction to the scene wasn’t the response he was looking for.
He confirmed that his appearance was initially intended to be a surprise for actress Maisie Williams as she was a fan, but it was spoiled by her co-star and on-screen sister Sophie Turner. “Sophie said at Comic-Con, ‘We’ve got Ed Sheeran on the next season,’” he explained at the 53:30-minute mark of the podcast. “I think Maisie was like, ‘What?’ ‘Cause she didn’t know not to say.”
As for how he got his small role, he explained that Snow Patrol frontman Gary Lightbody had filmed a cameo for Season 3 and was able to introduce him to the team behind the show in order to get his own cameo. “So I was in touch with the creators from 2012, I think, and then obviously they were like, ‘This doesn’t make sense,’” he added. “But then it made sense. … I feel like people’s reaction to it sort of muddied my joy to it.”
Sheeran explained that he originally met Williams when she had attended some of his shows in Dublin, since a lot of GoT was filmed in Ireland. “She’s always been awesome,” he said, explaining that Williams’ beloved character was never meant to see an eighth season. “I don’t think they had written the ending yet. It was meant to be her last season but it wasn’t. And as a surprise for her, cause it was her last season, they would get me on. So, she was meant to turn up on set, and I was by the fire. She was meant to know her lines and everything, get down and be like, 'Hang on.'"
Even though the fan reaction soured his enjoyment of the experience, he said itwas still a positive one. “Mate, it was great,” he concluded, adding that he had taken Kit Harington and other cast members on a night out before. He also said that Arya is his favourite character in the whole show.
Listen to the full podcast above.