Game of Thrones stars in NI for season eight premiere

Kit Harington, who plays Jon Snow in Game Of Thrones. Credit: PA

Stars of the hit fantasy series Game Of Thrones are back in Northern Ireland for the premiere of the eagerly-anticipated eighth - and final - series.

Fans have been longing to find out the fates of their favourite characters, and the wait is almost over.

Game Of Thrones, adapted from the books by George RR Martin, first hit our screens in 2011 and is now a global hit.

It has also proved a major tourist draw for Northern Ireland, with many locations used to film scenes from the series.

The HBO show is estimated to be worth £30m to the local economy, while Tourism NI estimates it brought 120,000 visitors to Northern Ireland in 2016.

Jerome Flynn, who plays Bronn, attending the Game of Thrones premiere. Credit: PA

But how do the stars of the show feel about the prospect of it all being over?

Kit Harington, Sophie Turner and Maisie Williams were among those who walked the red carpet in Belfast on Friday evening.

“I’m very emotional,” Kit Harington, who plays Jon Snow, told UTV.

“I met my wife on this show, it may have given me my future family, I met some life-long friends … It was an incredible roller-coaster and experience in acting.

“When you think of all of that over nine years and then you think about how you feel about it, there’s not words to describe how I feel about it. It’s too important to me.”

“It’s been described as a cultural phenomenon,” Liam Cunningham, who plays Davos Seaworth, said.

“It’s bigger than all of us and it’s raised the bar for television and quality.

“If you’re doing a job and it’s getting compared to The Wire and Sopranos and all that sort of stuff, it’s very gratifying.”

Speaking specifically about the final series, he added: “It’s completely epic. They’ve thrown everything at it.”

The first of the six final Game Of Thrones episodes will be aired simultaneously the UK and the US, although those wanting to watch it at the same time as those across the pond will have to tune in 2am on Monday.

  • WATCH: Game Of Thrones stars Liam Cunningham, Jerome Flynn and Kit Harington