There’s no shortage of severed heads in the bloody HBO swords-and-sorcery series “Game of Thrones,” but they’re apparently in short supply in the real world.
“George Bush’s head appears in a couple of beheading scenes,” say show-runners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss in the Season 1 DVD commentary, “…it’s not a political statement. We just had to use whatever head we had around.” The prosthetic likeness of President Bush probably would have gone completely unnoticed if not for that comment.
In the scene in question, W’s visage is barely recognizable. The head is one of many and it's turned mostly away from camera, wearing a long, dark, stringy wig. It's in the scene in which bratty King Joffrey tries to show his reluctantly betrothed, Sansa Stark, why she should not disobey him. It's her fathers severed head that is the focus of the scene.
Benioff and Weiss have apologized, saying that the demand for fake severed body parts is pretty high on the "Game" set, so they rent them in bulk. It wasn’t until after the scene was shot that someone noticed one of the heads was a likeness of the former president. “We meant no disrespect,” they said in a statement, “and apologize if anything we said or did suggested otherwise.”
In a statement posted by HBO on Facebook, the network says, “We are deeply dismayed to see this and find it unacceptable, disrespectful and in very bad taste.” It goes on to say that the image will be removed from future DVD releases.
Take a look for yourself in this YouTube clip at around 1:10. Would you have noticed?