15 'Game of Thrones' Stars Before They Were Famous

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Since its beginning in 2011, Game of Thrones has put a handful of famous faces on the map. Some of the show's most memorable actors like Emilia Clarke, Maisie Williams, Sophie Turner, and Kit Harrington got their big break when they landed roles on the show, but a good amount of their co-stars were already well-known before the series became the phenomenon that it is today. And if you've ever wanted to see what the Game of Thrones actors were doing before they were famous, you're definitely not alone.

Though a lot of your favorite characters on the show have appeared in popular films and television shows before the show debuted six years ago, it was Game of Thrones that caused many of these actors to ascend to superstar status. Still, even with all of these roles, you might not even remember where you've seen them first. Take Peter Dinklage for example. Did you know that he appeared in Elf almost a decade ago? Or his television character's loveable companion Bronn, played by Jerome Flynn. Did you know that he once had a singing career? It gets so much more fun from here.

Here's what a few of your favorite Game of Thrones characters were up to before they were superstars.


Peter Dinklage

Almost a decade before his role as Tyrion Lannister catapulted him to superstar, fan favorite status, Peter Dinklage played an author who beat up Will Ferrell in the 2003 film, Elf.


Lena Headey

Cersei Lannister isn't the first queen Lena Headey has ever played. Back in 2006 she starred alongside Gerard Butler in 300 as Queen Gorgo.


Natalie Dormer

Before making her Game of Thrones debut as Margaery Tyrell in 2012, Natalie Dormer played another famous royal, Anne Boleyn, on Showtime's hit series The Tudors.


Rory McCann

Before he was The Hound, Rory McCann played Michael Armstrong in the 2007 British action comedy, Hot Fuzz. He also had a small role in Clash of the Titans in 2010.


Nikolaj Coster-Waldau

The Danish actor's resume would still be pretty impressive even if it didn't include Game of Thrones. Before playing Jaime Lannister, Coster-Waldau played Gordon in the 2001 war drama Black Hawk Down.


Liam Cunningham

Before he was Ser Davos, the trusty adviser to the not-so-wise Stannis Baratheon (and now Jon Snow), Liam Cunningham played Solon in Clash of the Titans.


Iain Glen

If you want to catch a glimpse of Iain Glen before he had the pleasure of playing Daeneyrs' loyal adviser, you can catch him playing Dr. Isaacs in the Resident Evil fim series.


Jerome Flynn

Fun fact: Jerome Flynn was half of a singing duo called Robson & Jerome back in the 1990s.


Aidan Gillen

Politics was his game way before making it onto Game of Thrones. Before he played the ruthless and conniving Petyr "Littlefinger" Baelish, Gillen played Councilman Tommy Carcetti on HBO's The Wire.


Alfie Allen

Did you know that Alfie Allen's older sister is Lily Allen? Even better, did you know that he was actually the inspiration behind her 2006 song, "Alfie," which took her slacker younger brother to task?


Sean Bean

One does not simply...forget that Sean Bean once played Boromir in Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, and was the single inspiration behind one of the most memorable memes ever created.


Pedro Pascal

Pedro Pascal had about as much luck playing Oberyn Martell on Game of Thrones as he did playing Eddie on an episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer in 1999. But he's also had other roles in episodes of popular television shows like Nurse Jackie, Law & Order: Criminal Intent, and The Good Wife.


Jason Momoa

So we only got to enjoy watching Jason Momoa play Khal Drogo for one season, but that doesn't mean he isn't missed. Before his one-season stint on GoT, he appeared in a few episodes of CW's The Game as Kelly's boyfriend Roman.


Iwan Rheon

Rheon played Simon in the British television series Misfits, before joining the GoT cast for three seasons in 2013.


Carice van Houten

Before making her way to Thrones as Melisandre, Carice van Houten starred in the 2008 film Valkyrie as Nina von Stauffenburg.


Charles Dance

Charles Dance, aka good ol' Tywin Lannister, has taken on some pretty impressive roles in his day (eg. Mr. Tulkinghorn in a Bleak House miniseries and the Duke of Buckingham in Henry VIII), but one of the more surprising ones of them all happens to be an appearance he made in 2002's Ali G Indahouse in which he showed off some of his moves.


Jack Gleeson

Years before he was the evil king of Westeros, Jack Gleeson played a way less terror-inducing character when he played a short role in 2005's Batman Begins.

Now you can go back and watch all of these films and television episodes and be on the lookout for a few civilians of Westeros.