Go Behind The Scenes of the Epic ‘House of the Dragon’ Battle


This post is by Jason Hellerman from No Film School

We looked at a few questions from Season 2, Episode 4 of House of The Dragon director Alan Taylor Monday, talking about how he handled the battle of Rook’s Rest in the show, but today, HBO released an awesome behind-the-scenes video that showcases just how much work goes into creating a battle on television.

Let’s check it out below.


Making the Battle at Rook’s Rest from Season 2, Episode 4  of ‘House of The Dragon’

Showrunner Ryan Condal, director Alan Taylor, and actress Eve Best (Rhaenys Targaryen), and many other House of Dragon series regulars and crew reflect on the massive scale of the Battle at Rook’s Rest within the above video.

What I love about shows like this one is just how epic they’ve become.

The scope and scale on display takes thousands of workers to get right, from people costuming different houses, to the VFX department, production design, to extras, production assistants, crafty, and everyone in between.

The Rook’s Rest is the biggest set built for House of the Dragon so far. The battle scene was filmed at Bourne Wood, a location that was also used in Gladiator.

The crew had to build a massive set, including four battering rams and multiple houses with different sigils.

It was a big logistical challenge to put the battle scene together. Five hundred plus extras were involved playing four different houses. The filmmakers wanted to use real fire as much as possible for authenticity, which I’m sure added all kinds of additional scheduling and safety protocols.

The House of the Dragon production team used explosives buried in the ground to simulate dragon fire.

It was basically assembling an entire, real army to film (more or less…)

All of this is crucial to getting the audience to buy into the world and to get them to understand the danger and destruction that comes along with dragon wars, you know.

Director Alan Taylor storyboarded the whole battle before they shot, and collaborated with an artist to help shape the action.

The filming involved a lot of stunts, including people being set on fire, so there was a lot of moving parts to make sure everyone stayed safe.

A new platform called Buck 2.0, a cross between a volume and blue screen stage, was used to film the dragon fight scene. It has a revolving saddle on it with another camera on an additional arm revolving in the other direction.

This rig setup allows for more realistic dragon-like movements, including wing flapping, among other dragonisms. Not to mention the cameras follow the actor’s movements as well, so everything feels natural.,

One of the challenges of filming the dragon scene was to make the camera feel like it was on another dragon, and this new tech helped them really showcase a world where dragons are real and can fight.

For me, this was one of the best episodes of the series, and maybe in all of Game of Thrones.

Let me know what you think in the comments!