Though the two universes of Game of Thrones and Doctor Who are unlikely to ever meet outside the realms of fan-fiction, they do have quite a lot in common. Both shows include sprawling mythologies, mystical beasts and a penchant for gut-punching character deaths... and of course, the two TV shows also make great use of their predominately British casts.
Throughout their extensive histories, quite a few TV talents have “vworped” from the world of Westeros into the Doctor’s universe and vice versa. But which actors are they? And who do they play in Doctor Who and Game of Thrones? Scroll on down to find out!
1. Donald Sumpter
Ah, good old Maester Luwin! In #GameofThrones, Sumpter played a kind and friendly figure for the Stark household in the earlier series of the show. But it’s a testament to his talents that there wasn’t an ounce of fatherly warmth on show when he appeared in Doctor Who. In the 2015 episode, 'Hell Bent', Sumpter played the latest incarnation of the tyrannical Time Lord Rassilon to great effect in his confrontation with the Twelfth Doctor (Peter Capaldi).
2. Diana Rigg
With her knack for throwing out put downs and pithy one liners, many Game Of Thrones fans refer to Olena Tyrell as the infamous Queen of Thorns. However, some viewers may not remember that Diana Rigg also played Mrs Winifred Gillyflower in #DoctorWho, a lady that was another prickly and manipulative character when she came into conflict with Matt Smith’s Doctor back in 2013.
3. Richard E. Grant
Another legendary British thesp, Withnail himself was the sinister Simeon in #MattSmith’s era of Doctor Who, a man that worked with – and later became a vessel for –an entity called the Great Intelligence across several episodes.
Grant’s part in Season 6 of Game of Thrones was an entertaining one, if a tad less impactful. As Izembaro, Grant was a pompous and domineering lead actor of a troupe that Arya was instructed to infiltrate by Jaqen H'ghar. And speaking of Arya…
4. Maisie Williams
Orphan and later an assassin, Arya Stark is a girl who goes through some pretty trying and traumatic situations. In that respect, her role in Doctor Who is no different. Williams' capably plays Ashildir/Me, a Viking girl who, thanks to the Twelfth Doctor’s intervention, is granted a lonely and lasting immortality. Indeed, over the course of her long life, Ashildir is forced to endure the loss of her loved ones until the end of time itself! Talk about a raw deal…
5. Iain Glen
Badass and king of the friend zone, Iain Glen’s Ser Jorah Mormont is a fan-favorite character on Thrones, and he’s no less likable in his brief stint on Doctor Who. A gruff guy with a heart of gold, Glen’s Father Octravian assisted the Eleventh Doctor against the Weeping Angels back in 2010, whilst giving him a fateful warning about his future in the process.
6. Harry Lloyd
Lloyd definitely has a knack for playing despicable cads, doesn’t he? Known for menacing Dany (#EmiliaClarke) as her detestable older brother, Viserys Targaryen, Lloyd also brought his considerable spite to the fore as Baines in Doctor Who. Racist and boorish, Baines was a schoolboy from 1913 whose body was later possessed by Son of Mine from the alien Family of Blood.
In these episode of Doctor Who, Harry Lloyd also shared scenes with a certain Thomas Brodie-Sangster, who many will recognize as the actor that brought Jojen Reed to life in Game Of Thrones.
7. Mark Gatiss
Doctor Who fans instantly recognized Mark Gatiss when he appeared as the Iron Bank’s representative, Tycho Nestoris in Season 4 of Game of Thrones. After all, Gatiss has been a hugely visible figure in the world of Doctor Who ever since the show was regenerated back in 2005, scripting a number of episodes and appearing in many others.
Not only did he confront the Tenth Doctor as Professor Lazarus, but Gatiss also played chess with the Eleventh Doctor as Gantok in 'The Wedding of River Song', and he’s even set to appear in the Twelfth Doctor’s final episodes as a mysteriously-named character: the Captain.
8. Paul Kaye
A virtuoso when it comes to eccentric characters, Paul Kaye is known for his stint playing Dennis Pennis in the 1990s, but he’s recently received recognition for portraying the drink-sodden Thoros of Myr on Game of Thrones too.
Additionally, Kaye's turn as the cowardly Tivolian undertaker Albar Prentis was greatly appreciated by Doctor Who fans when they watched him became embroiled in the Twelfth Doctor’s battle with the Fisher King.
9. Liam Cunningham
Yup, even the fan-favorite Ser Davos Seaworth has hopped over into Doctor Who! On his downtime from supporting rebel claimants to the Iron Throne, Liam Cunningham also appeared as Russian submarine Captain Zhukov in 2013 where he fought the Ice Warrior Skaldak alongside the Eleventh Doctor.
And hey! Edmure Tully (Tobias Menzies) is in this episode too!
10. Joe Dempsie
Way back in 2008, we saw Joe Dempise play Cline, a human fighter who becomes enamored with the Tenth Doctor’s (#DavidTennant) daughter, Jenny, but most people online will now recognize him as Gendry, beefcake, blacksmith and boat-rower extraordinaire.
11. Faye Marsay
On Game of Thrones, Faye Marsay’s sour and ruthless turn as the Waif ensured that she was a formidable foe for Arya Stark during her training as a Faceless Man, and many fans were satisfied when Arya finally triumphed against her.
However, in Doctor Who, Marsay was far more likable in the show’s 2014 Christmas Special when she fought against the influence of the “dream crabs” as crew member Shona McCullough.
12. Julian Glover
A veteran of Star Wars and several other famous pop-culture properties, the man behind Maester Pycelle has also had two stints on Doctor Who over its fifty-year history. Glover played both Richard the Lionheart and another character called Scaroth – though not in the same episode that is.
13. David Bradley
Game of Thrones fans are no doubt shouting “Boo! Hiss!” already. After all, Bradley’s character Walder Frey masterminded the notorious Red Wedding, where many of our favorite characters were massacred before our very eyes. However, the star is looked upon far more fondly by Whovians.
Sure, Bradley may have played the villainous Solomon in 'Dinosaurs on a Spaceship', but he’s garnered a great deal of affection for his touching portrayal of William Hartnell in the docudrama An Adventure in Time and Space. And, because of his uncanny resemblance to Hartnell, he’s now assumed the role of the beloved First Doctor wholesale!
Bonus: Burn Gorman
This one is a little bit of a cheat, since Burn Gorman never appeared in Doctor Who itself, but he still appeared in the same universe as the main show. As series regular Owen Harper, Gorman played a key member of Jack Harkness’s planetary defense team in the Doctor Who spin-off Torchwood. And as for his role on Game of Thrones? Well, Gorman memorably brought the Night’s Watch mutineer Karl Tanner to life, playing a decidedly less heroic part in Westeros.
Wow! There sure are plenty of actors who have appeared in both of these stellar #TV shows. Given that there are new episodes of Doctor Who and Game of Thrones due in the coming years, I'm sure that there'll be even more casting cross-overs yet to come! If you're a die-hard fan of either show, make sure you keep up-to-date with the latest Doctor Who and Game of Thrones news, rumors and casting developments on Movie Pilot's dedicated hashtag pages.
Which is your favorite actor on this list? Do you know any other stars who have appeared in both Doctor Who and Game of Thrones? Head on to the comments and let me know!