The cast of Game of Thrones has been contracting as we get closer to the story's end. Season 5 addition of the Dornish contingent was the last major casting roster. Since then, Season 6 removed half the Dornish, nearly all the bad guys from Winterfell, along with most of the King Landing crew. Season 7 cleaned out the Riverlands, the rest of Dorne, and all the extra characters in the Reach. With so many characters disappearing, fans are worried about their favorites. Will Gendry be in Game Of Thrones Season 8? Will he survive a return if he does come back?
Gendry is that class of characters who could just be written off now that they've been brought back to establish they are still alive. Hotpie, for instance, who we met along with Gendry, was brought back in Season 7 for a quick driveby hangout with Arya. Meera, who spent so much time working hard to get Bran back to Winterfell, has also toddled off never to have her story concluded. Edmure Tully will stay off stage in Season 8, hopefully no longer rotting in the dungeons of the Freys.
But according to Joe Dempsie, fans won't have to worry about this being his fate. He's definitely back for Season 8, and he's even got extra screen time.
Talking to Digital Spy, Dempsie hinted he might even have a major part to play in the final episodes, though he doesn't want fans to assume this means he makes it to the end.
I've done well out of it this year, for sure. As with all these things, we never shoot in chronological order – so you might have people coming in at the beginning and at the end, but it doesn't necessarily mean they make it all the way through!
Dempsie also admits that he always knew the plan was to eventually bring him back down the line. When his story ended in Season 3 with him rowing away, showrunners Dan Weiss and David Benioff told him his time on the show wasn't over. That made so many of the "Still rowing?" questions, even asked in jest, hard to answer, since he couldn't give away that the possibility of a return even existed.
But even so, he wasn't counting on it.
It wouldn't have surprised me, and it wouldn't have angered me at all, if they'd got to season 7 and just not really had time for Gendry. So to not only come back and have that loose end tied up, but to have been given the amount of story I got, has been great – because not everyone gets that.
As to what that "amount of story" is, Dempsie's not saying. One thing all those "Still rowing?" questions did help him with was training for keeping the secrets of the final season.
For Dempsie, the fact that he got to come back is a blessing he can never be too thankful for, and that he gets to witness the end of the series from the set is a true joy.
For me personally, the only real hope I had for the character was just that he would be there when the reckoning came. You got the sense – even back in season 3 – that this was a show that was building towards some incredible climax, so you just wanted to be there when it all happened. Not even necessarily just from a character point-of-view, [but] from a personal point of view – to be stood there on the set when they're making that ending... that end game. So yeah, I'm very happy to be involved and be on set for season 8.
Game of Thrones Season 8 and that climax will that it's own sweet time getting here, premiering on HBO sometime in 2019.