Pop star and Grammy-winner, Ed Sheeran appeared in the ‘Game of Thrones’ season 7 premiere ‘Dragonstone’, but his role was met with major backlash on social media.
His cameo as a singing Lannister soldier in the show involved just two lines – “It’s a new one”, in reference to a song that Maisie Williams’s character Arya Stark heard him singing, and “Worst place in the world”, about King’s Landing.
Though there were mixed reactions to Ed Sheeran’s role, some GOT fans had complained about having a celebrity included in a scene.
Much of the criticism was centred on the fact that there seemed to have been little attempt to disguise his cameo – whilst other artists such as Coldplay drummer Will Champion and Gary Lightbody of Snow Patrol were more difficult to spot in their scenes. Sheeran’s scene also left an opportunity for him to return in the next episode, although he did not appear in the trailer.
Following criticism from his Game Of Thrones cameo, Ed Sheeran briefly deleted his personal Twitter account for the second time this month. During an interview earlier in July, he explained that internet trolls pushed him off the social media site.
However, the pop star’s disappearance from Twitter was short lived as the singer’s account reappeared hours after it was deleted. Since reactivating his account on Tuesday, July, 19, all of Sheeran’s tweets since July 2013 have been deleted and the singer’s more than 19 million followers have been reduced to less than 2,000.
Sheeran had previously limited his activity on Twitter, saying that he could not cope with the online hate directed at him.
Amid the criticism from some fans, Game of Throne’s director, Jeremy Podeswa, however, had nothing but praise for the musician.
“It was lovely working with Ed. He is one of the nicest guys in the world, and he really is one of the guys. He’s lovely, he’s a team player, he wants to do a good job, he takes direction, he’s very open. He’s a big fan of the show and he was really excited to be a part of it. I think his lovely voice was used to great effect and he just has a really nice presence. He blends into the world of the show in a nice way where if you didn’t have all these associations with him and his musical career, nobody would even blink about his presence on the show,” Podeswa said.
In another interview, Podeswa said Ed Sheeran came into the show with only lovely intentions to come and do a good job and sing well.
“If people didn’t know who Ed was, they wouldn’t have thought about it twice. The hoo-ha seems to be from things that are outside of the world of the show. In the world of the show, he did a lovely job, and he looks like he belongs in that world,” Podeswa said.
Co-showrunner, David Benioff had earlier revealed that Ed’s appearance in the show was meant as a gift for star, Maisie Williams (Arya Stark) who is a big fan of the musician. “For years, we tried to get Ed Sheeran on the show to surprise Maisie, and this year we finally did it,” he said.
Sheeran isn’t the first musician to cameo on the HBO drama; Gary Lightbody of Snow Patrol, Will Champion from Coldplay, Sigur Rós, and nearly all members of American heavy metal band Mastodon previously appeared on the show.
Season 7’s premiere drew 16.1 million total viewers, a 50% increase from last year’s premiere.