Warning: this article contains spoilers!
The actor behind one of Game of Thrones‘ most beloved characters has confirmed that he won’t be back for the show’s sixth season.
Jon Snow was seen at the end of tonight’s finale, entitled ‘Mother’s Mercy’, seemingly dying in a pool of his blood, after several men of the Night’s Watch stabbed him repeatedly – with the young steward, Olly, delivering what appeared to be a final, fatal blow to his heart.
To the despair of many fans, Kit Harington has since told Entertainment Weekly that his character really is gone for good, and that he won’t be returning next season.
“I had a sit-down with Dan [Weiss] and David [Benioff], we did the Tony Soprano walk [letting an actor know they’re being whacked]. And they said, ‘Look, you’re gone, it’s done’,” Harington explained.
“Quite honestly, I have never been told the future of things in this show, but this is the one time I have. They sat me down and said, ‘This is how it is’. If anything in the future is not like that, then I don’t know about it – it’s only in David and Dan and George’s heads. But I’ve been told I’m dead. I’m dead. I’m not coming back next season. So that’s all I can tell you, really.”
Harington also admitted that he “kind of knew it was coming” despite the fact that he hadn’t read George RR Martin’s last novel, A Dance with Dragons. He did however revel in his character’s exit, stating that he “loved how they brought Olly in to be the person who kills me”.
Fans of the series are bound to be devastated, as Jon Snow has been one of the main favourites since the show began in 2011. Theories have run rife in online communities, questioning the character’s true parentage and whether this might mean that he – rather than Stannis or Daenerys – would be the one to finally ascend to the Iron Throne. This latest move from showrunners however, seems to put that theory dead in it’s tracks.
Game of Thrones is expected to return to screens for a sixth season in 2016.