Who wouldn’t want to be an extra on “Game of Thrones”?
So it’s no surprise that lurking in the background of a shot while rulers scheme and armies clash is a dream for many.
A few years ago, engineer and “Game of Thrones” fan Felipe Ferri was able to live that dream.
Here’s how Ferri came to work as a “Game of Thrones” extra and what it was like:
In 2013, Ferri quit his job at Brazilian aircraft manufacturing company Embraer, where he had worked for six years. He says that at the time, he hoped to figure out what he wanted to do with the rest of his life.
He decided to take about three months off to see the world. Dubrovnik, Croatia, his grandmother's hometown, was at the top of his travel wish list. 'She always told me how beautiful the city was,' he tells Business Insider.
Ferri says his mother -- who is also a major 'Game of Thrones' fan -- told him that the show shot many of its King's Landing scenes in the Croatian city.
Ferri searched the name of the show's local, Croatian production company on Google. 'I sent them an email, explaining I was coming to Croatia from Brazil, that I was a big fan of the series, and that it would be so incredible if they could accept me to work as an extra,' Ferri says.
Much to Ferri's surprise, a casting manager responded a few days later and asked him to send over some photos. 'Then he told me I could be an extra and to be in Dubrovnik on some date in September. It was easy like that,' Ferri says.
Still, Ferri almost didn't make it into the show. Filming dates changed, and he could no longer make it for the start of the shoot. But when he showed up in Dubrovnik anyway, he was still accepted as an extra and cast as a waiter. 'They are always in need of additional extras,' he says.
The segment that Ferri appeared in -- King Joffrey's wedding feast sequence -- only made up about 15 minutes of the series. However, it took five days to shoot and involved about a hundred extras and dozens of crew members, in addition to the main cast.
'At the time of the shooting, I had read only the first book, so I didn't know what happened on this particular episode,' Ferri says. However, on set, he sensed that something was about to happen involving primary antagonist King Joffrey.
Ferri had the right idea -- the wedding sequence ended up doubling as Joffrey's death scene. 'It had to be shot several times from several angles, so I could see Prince Joffrey choke a lot of times right in front of me,' Ferri says. 'I think the best way to receive a spoiler about a show or film is watching it happen live.'
When the cameras weren't rolling, Ferri says that he enjoyed 'hanging out with the other extras in such an other-worldly experience.'
He also gained a greater appreciation for the work that goes into the series. 'You realise how much effort is spent for so few minutes of the show,' he says. 'The props were incredible, and each little detail was thought out.'
In the months following his stint as an extra, Ferri had to keep that spoiler a secret until it premiered in the episode, 'The Lion and the Rose.' Ferri has since started his own mobile and web app business, Sailscooter Software Development. He says clients sometimes refer to him as 'the programmer who was in 'Game of Thrones.''
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