With Game of Thrones growing to become arguably the biggest and most successful show in television history, it’s not surprising to learn that the actors involved are making a pretty penny for their performances.
While the actor’s paycheck varied depending on their character’s importance and their time on screen, it’s safe to say that everyone is cashing in on the show’s success. You won’t believe the ballpark amount that some of the main actors on the show made each episode.
Kit Harington Makes A Comfortable Living Playing Jon Snow
Kit Harington portrays the heroic and honorable Jon Snow. Harington has been involved with the show since episode one, with his character evolving from the Bastard of Winterfell to King of the North, and a key fighter in the battle against the Army of the Dead.
His time on Game of Thrones has turned him into one of the most popular actors on the planet, so it won’t be long before he is involved with another project. For now, he’s probably comfortable raking in around $500,000 for each episode.
Nikolaj Coster-Waldu Gracefully Handled His Character’s Transformation
First appearing in the series premiere, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau plays Jamie Lannister, easily one of the most controversial characters on the show. Audiences started off the series disgusted by Jamie for his intimate relationship with his twin sister and for pushing Bran out of a tower hoping he will die.
However, he has proven to have arguably one of the greatest character arks on the show and grew to become a fan-favorite. For his work as the one-handed knight, Coster-Waldau makes $500,000 and possibly more in the final episodes.
Peter Dinklage Consistently Steals The Show
Peter Dinklage plays Tyrion Lannister, a dwarf born into one of the richest families in the world. Highly intelligent, Tyrion spent the show’s early episodes making it known that his favorite things include wine and women. However, once the action starts to pick up, Tyrion demonstrates his intelligence and mind for strategy as he talks his way out of countless harmful situations.
He eventually finds himself as the Hand of the Queen to Daenerys, fighting against own family. Although Dinklage was originally receiving $300,000 he quickly found himself making $500,000 per episode.
Amelia Clarke Is Daenerys Stormborn
Daenerys starts her story as a gullible young girl who is given to Khal Drogo in exchange for an army. Over time, she becomes stronger and wiser, even giving birth to three dragons, something believed to be impossible.
She then spends her time in Essos proving herself to be an able conqueror, patiently waiting for the opportunity to take back the Seven Kingdoms. She quickly became one of the shows most iconic character, and being one of the shows biggest stars is one of the few actors making $500,000 an episode.
Arya Stark Wouldn’t Be The Same Without Maisie Williams
Arya Stark starts out as an unruly little girl who makes it clear that she doesn’t want to grow up and become a Lady. She’s much more interested in fighting and breaking down the gender norms established in her world.
Arya has one of the most captivating storylines in the show, resulting in her becoming a highly-trained assassin and a key player in the fight against the Army of the Dead. William’s acting skills, her character’s importance, and her stunt work earn her around $175,000 an episode.
Lena Headey Makes A Great Villain
Played by Lena Headey, Cersei Lannister was the wife of King Robert Baratheon before killing him and was involved in an incestuous relationship with her twin brother Jamie. In the series, Cersei shows that there’s nothing she won’t do to protect her children (which doesn’t work out), the Iron Throne, and herself.
She’s as ruthless as they come and a master at playing the game of thrones, making her extremely formidable. Both audiences and fellow cast members claim that Headey gives the best performance on the show and makes $500,000 for it.
Sophie Turner Was A “Tier B” Character For A Long Time
At the beginning of the show, Sophie Turner’s character, Sansa Stark, started off the series as an innocent little girl who dreamed of knights in shining armor and hopefully being queen. However, after the execution of her father, her world was turned upside down and was forced to survive a mind-boggling amount of politics in the series by whatever means possible.
Now, she’s a force to be reckoned with and knows how to play the game better than anyone. For some time, Turner was walking away with $150,000 an episode as a “Tier B” character, but it is assumed she received a pay raise for her extensive work in the most recent seasons.
Gwendoline Christie Rose In The Ranks
First appearing in season two as a member of Renly’s Kingsgaurd, Brienne of Tarth appeared to be a secondary character. Yet, over time, she eventually found herself as one of the main cast members.
Over the series, Brienne demonstrates that she is the true image of what a knight should be. This is not only because of her impressive combat skills but her loyalty and the importance of her word. Starting out with as a minor character, she rose to become “Tier B,” making around $200,000 per episode.
Isaac Hempstead Wright Plays One Of The Most Powerful Characters In The Series
Isaac Hempstead Wright plays Bran Stark, a young boy who loses the use of his legs after being pushed from a tower by Jamie Lannister. After his fall, Bran is in a coma where he is visited by the Three-Eyed Raven who helps Bran open his third eye.
After a trip beyond the Wall, Bran becomes the new Three-Eyed Raven, and as a result, the main target of the Night King. Being such an incredibly important and powerful character, Wright earns around $175,000 for his work.
Natalie Dorman Turned Margaery Tyrell Into A Main Character
We first meet Margaery Tyrell in season two of the show after she is married to Renly Baratheon who is soon murdered. She then relocates to King’s Landing where she and her grandmother become involved in the politics in the capitol. Yet, after she gets in Cersei’s way, she is killed during the destruction of the Sept of Baelor, along with the rest of her house.
In the novels, Margaery has a rather small role, yet Natalie Dorman’s performance led the showrunners to make her character more involved. She received around $150,000 per episode.
Natalie Emmanuel Plays The Multilingual Messandei
Messandei came onto the show in season three as a slave that Daenerys frees after taking over Astapor. Messandei quickly gains Daenerys’ trust, becoming one of her best friends and most trusted advisers.
She speaks several languages which greatly helps Daenerys while simultaneously sparking up a steamy love affair with the leader of the Unsullied, Grey Worm. So far, Messandei has been featured in over 30 episodes, and for her work, Emmanuel receives $10,000 an episode.
Aidan Gillen Was Paid To Be Hated
Aidan Gillen played the mischievous Petyr Baelish, better known as Littlefinger. At first, he appears as an impressive political force, but after some time, it becomes clear that his intentions are far more sinister. He spends the majority of his time pitting characters against each other, starting wars, and killing anyone who gets in his way.
In turn, many fans cheered when he was finally executed by Arya in season seven. For his unbelievably convincing performance, Gillen made between $100,000 and $200,000 for each episode.
Conleth Hill As The Spider Of King’s Landing
Lord Varys, played by Conleth Hill, begins the series as the Master of Whispers in King’s Landing. He is proven to be extremely well-connected and knowledgeable about most things occurring in the Seven Kingdoms and even other parts of the world. His cunning eventually lands him the position as one of Daenerys’ advisers, always making sure he’s on the side he thinks will win.
People have been theorizing about his true intentions since day one, and have been excited to see what his character will do. As the Master of Whispers, Conleth earns just under $200,000 an episode.
John Bradley Nails Playing Samwell Tarly
Samwell Tarly is one of the underdogs of the show, proving himself to be an unexpected hero on numerous occasions. His journey begins at Castle Black where it’s clear that he relies on his intelligence far more than his fighting skills. It is there that he befriends Jon and proves himself to be one of the most valuable characters on the show.
At the start of the show, Bradley was only receiving $10,000 per episode, yet as his character became more prominent, his salary was increased to over $100,000.
Rory McCann is Perfect As The Hound
Introduced as one of the Lannister’s personal guards, SandorClegane, also known as the Hound, is played by Rory McCann. The Hound is yet another Game of Thrones characters with a story arc that led audiences to adore his character. Starting out as an angry killing machine, McCann’s character develops into a person with true emotions and provides comic relief in much-needed circumstances.
As the Hound, McCann takes home around $150,000 for the episodes that he’s in. We wonder if he makes a little extra for having to wear prosthetic makeup in every scene.
Ian Glen Mad Jorah Mormont A Fan-Favorite
Jorah Mormont begins the show as a spy for Varys, keeping an eye on Daenerys Targaryen and sending information to the Small Council. Over time, Jorah eventually falls in love with Daenerys, becoming one of the firmest believers in her cause and willing to die for her.
His tragic love story, wise council, and superior skills as a warrior made him popular among audiences. Although he tragically died in the Battle of Winterfell, for his many episodes on the show, Glen earned between $100,000 to $200,000 for each one.
Alfie Allen’s Character Went Through Numerous Transformations
Alfie Allen plays Theon Greyjoy, who starts the series as the pompous ward of Ned Stark at Winterfell. However, after a series of countless bad decisions, he finds himself as the plaything of Ramsay Bolton, who strips him of his identity while torturing him into insanity.
After escaping Ramsay’s clutches, he sets off on a path to correct many of the wrongs he has done in his life, sacrificing himself for Bran Stark in the end. Although he started only making $10,000 an episode, he climbed his way into the $100,000 range.
Liam Cunningham Plays The Lovable Davos Seaworth
Ser Davos Seaworth may have started out as a relatively minor character, but he quickly grew to become incredibly important as well as loved by fans. He’s arguably one of the only decent people in the show, who hasn’t done anything too atrocious.
At first he served Stannis Baratheon but later found himself as the Hand of the King to Jon Snow, rallying the North to fight against the White Walkers. While his payment per episode may have started on the lower end of the spectrum, he is now at the $300,000 mark.
Pilou Asbæk Is A Villain With Swagger
Pilou Asbæk plays Euron Greyjoy, a well-traveled and incredibly pirate who appears in season six of the show. He is the uncle of Theon and Yara Greyjoy, although there’s no love between them as Euron is nothing short of psychopathic. He achieved his goal of getting in with Cersei and her crowd in King’s Landing and surely has some tricks up his sleeve for the final season.
While he wasn’t paid much for season six, his role was increased in season seven, therefore earning him a pay raise. He also received more money for being a key player in season eight making around $100,000.
Jerome Flynn Helps
Jerome Flynn plays the sellsword named Bronn, who is introduced to the series in season one. After defending Tyrion in a trial by combat in the Eerie, Bronn and Tyrion become friends of sorts. He claims there’s nothing he won’t do for the right price and can hold his own in almost any fight.
While Bronn is always around to provide comic relief, it’s up in the air if audiences will still like him when season eight wraps up. Being on the show from the start, it’s estimated that Flynn makes around $50,000 to $100,000 per episode.