Gemma Whelan will be returning to Game of Thrones next year, according to fansite Winter Is Coming.
The comedian and actress, most recently seen on our screens in Murder in Successville, plays Yara Greyjoy – fierce warrior and loyal sister to the tormented Theon (Alfie Allen). First introduced in the show’s second season, Yara commands the Greyjoy fleet and was last seen – MILD SPOILER ALERT – trying, and failing, to rescue her brother.
It has long been mooted that Whelan’s time on the show was not over, with her agents page suggesting she would appear in the fifth season earlier this year, to no avail. However, the rumoured casting of several new members of the Greyjoy family has led to widespread speculation that Yara would return in the sixth season in 2016.
Yesterday, Winter Is Coming, the web’s biggest GoT fansite (they’re just like us, except they talk about Westeros more often), confirmed that the production team filmed a scene in Ballingtoy Harbour, which stands in for the Iron Islands, and Whelan was present.
Further rumours around the show’s mysterious sixth season, the first to be mostly featuring material from currently unpublished books in the A Song of Ice and Fire series, suggest that a character yet to be introduced from the novels, Lady Stoneheart, will also be making an appearance next season. Given that, in the books, this character is accompanied by Thoros of Myr, who was played by Paul Kaye in the third season, we’re hoping he’ll be spotted in Northern Ireland too, once his current stint at the National Theatre is complete.
As always, as we hear more, we’ll let you know. Game of Thrones returns in the Spring.