For a show that exposes the darkly political wheelings and dealings of a fantasy world, Game of Thrones kind of hid the ball about its ties to the players in our own. In today’s Dealbook, former Goldman Sachs senior partner Stephen Friedman was revealed to have been cast with his wife in the fourth season premiere of GOT. It’s an odd Easter Egg: apparently the 76-year-old, who also worked in the White House for George W. Bush, is only seen walking in the background of a scene. Most people would probably have missed it–the way they missed George W.’s head on a spike until the DVD commentary pointed it out–but for the New York Times article.
Here’s the connection: Mr. Friedman’s son is David Benioff, one of the show’s creators who was just profiled by Jim Windolf in Vanity Fair. Are you wondering why the two have different names? (No? Bear with us anyway.) As the article mentions:
According to Mr. Cohan, Mr. Friedman said that his son changed his name as an adult, when “he didn’t want to be known as the 50th David Friedman in Hollywood.”