"Game of Thrones" is one of the most talked-about shows on TV. This HBO series has a devoted fan base, and has also won numerous awards and critical accolades. But despite its immense popularity, there are some surprising facts about this show that even the most devoted fans don't know. Here are some astonishing facts about this groundbreaking series.
1. The show's fictional languages are more popular than some real ones!
According to the BBC, the reach of some fictional Westerosi languages on "Game of Thrones" exceeds the reach of certain European languages. About five million people have been exposed to languages like Dothraki and Valyrian via "Game of Thrones," which is more than can be said of Welsh, Irish Gaelic, and Scots Gaelic combined! Not bad for a fictional language like Dothraki, which only has about 3,000 words at present.
2. The show's legitimate and pirate audiences are the same size!
"Game of Thrones" is one of the most pirated TV shows on the planet. Certain episodes have been downloaded over 4 million times, which means that the number of HBO subscribers tuning in to watch the show legitimately is roughly the same number as those who pirate the show.
3. "Game of Thrones" is verifiably not just for men.
Public perception seems to be that "Game of Thrones" is a show that's just for men. It's easy to see why people might think that, given the number of naked women in any given episode. And yet, according to Wired, about 42 percent of the "Game of Thrones" audience is female. While that's not an equal gender divide, it's still better than the 36 percent female audience that "Breaking Bad" pulled in during its time on the air. It's obvious that "Game of Thrones" really does appeal to women…otherwise, how could you explain the popularity of names like Arya and Khaleesi as names for newborn girls in the United States?
4. "Game of Thrones" is one of the most expensive shows on TV.
The pilot episode cost somewhere between $5 and $10 million, while the average episode of "Thrones" costs about $6 million. Given the lavish costumes, intense CGI, and globetrotting shooting schedule, it's not really surprising that the budget is so high! In comparison, the average episode of a network TV show costs $3 million, and an episode of a cable drama costs around $2 million.
"Game of Thrones" will return for its fourth season on March 14, 2014.
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