After a long wait, Amazon’s upcoming fantasy epic The Wheel of Time adapted from Robert Jordan’s book series of the same name, resumed filming in Prague. The show’s official twitter account recently shared a first look at the Winespring Inn in Emond’s Field and several of the cast have taken to social media to announce their return.
It’s been some time since we last had any Wheel of Time news to report, though some of you may recall our article from June, featuring a certain character called Steve…
If you’re looking for more Steve revelations we’re sorry to disappoint. However, we did find some recently uploaded audition tapes that could provide context to what to expect from another character. All of the tapes are for a part called Leona, mentioned to be an Aes Sedai of the Red Ajah. After watching the videos several times, we’re fairly certain that Leona is actually a code name for Liandrin Guirale, played in the show by Kate Fleetwood.
The tapes were recently uploaded by three of the actresses reading for the role of Leona and include five scenes written for the audition. Audition scripts are not necessarily indicative of the end product, so don’t expect to hear these lines word by word in the show. That being said, the tapes discuss some events fans will remember from the books and some passages may feel familiar.
We know from experience that audition tapes are often taken down soon after they leak. Take a look below for a full transcription of the scenes and what we think they may be about (spoilers for the books and potentially the show included!)
Leona: Myara Sheira.
Leona: If you’ve come to help us you’re too late.
Myara: Help with what?
Leona: Oh didn’t you hear? We captured the Nagar Reborn.
Analysis: It’s not hard to guess that the scene is between the Aes Sedai Liandrin and Moiraine (Myara Sheira), discussing the capture of the false Dragon Logain Ablar (Nagar Reborn).
Aes Sedai: Only Leona, Elayne and I are strong enough to hold him but even then we have to work in pairs.
Leona: You’re due to relieve me an hour ago.
Aes Sedai: Does the madness have him yet?
Leona: Does he look sane to you?
Aes Sedai: He was sane enough to raise an army and take over half of Celthren before we stopped him. How did we capture him? A plan after your own heart Myara. We bought off his guards and ambushed him in the night. What makes you think he’s any different than the false Nagas who preceded him? Prophecies are thousands of years old, muddy and broken, translated by a hundred hands that each have their own intentions. But we know one thing to be true. The Naga will be the most powerful channeller in an age. We’re four of the strongest sisters in the temple and this man with no training outstrips any of us alone. I don’t even know if the queen herself could match him.
Leona: If there’s the slightest chance he is the Naga, we should gentle him here and now, slit his throat just to be sure.
Aes Sedai: Did you choose the red sect just so blood wouldn’t show on your robes? Enough! You will take him to the temple as the queen commanded and he will stand trial as all women and men deserve. Get some rest. You’ve done more shifts than any of us. You used your strength to heal me. Let me share the burden.
Leona: Elayne’s company was bad enough.
Analysis: The dialogue seems to be between Liandrin and another Aes Sedai. Judging from their lines, both have been involved in Logain’s capture as has a third Aes Sedai called Elayne. This is curious as there is a character in the books of that name, though it wouldn’t exactly make sense for her to participate in the hunt for the Dragon, as she is no full Aes Sedai at the time. Myara (Moiraine) is also addressed, though from what we gather, she’s only a bystander in the scene.
Leona: I like your braid. Nadie, isn’t it? Sorry if I’m mispronouncing it I couldn’t quite place the accent.
Nadie: I’m imagining you came over her because you want something. You witches always do. Though I think I’ll ask the questions first. Depending on how well you answer, maybe I’ll give you what you want. How long have you known Myara?
Analysis: The third scene is a short dialogue between Liandrin and a character called Nadie, which is almost certainly a codename for Nynaeve, given her well-known mistrust of the Aes Sedai.
Leona: It fits really. The Blue sect are nothing more than little spies who exaggerate their own importance. Surely you heard of the sects. Even in the smallest villages they have their own …
Second Person: The silly games you play in your temple had gotten nothing to do with us.
Leona: The witches are split into seven sects. Each have their own separate purpose. Yellows are healers, browns are the keepers of knowledge, whites focus on philosophy, greys diplomacy, and greens fancy themselves the battle sect, though they haven’t really known battle since the Dreatch Wars.
Second Person: And the red?
Leona: We protect the world from people who would misuse the one power. Even other witches
Third Person: Leona, Salaam, mind if I join you?
Leona: I was just leaving. The red tent is open to all women. Feel free to stop by if you tire of cold chicken.
Analysis: Here, we have Liandrin teaching another person (maybe Nynaeve or Egwene) of the different sects (Ajahs) and their functions before they are interrupted by a third person (likely Moiraine). There’s quite a bit of exposition in the dialogue, including an allusion to what sounds like the “Dretch Wars” (Trolloc Wars).
Leona: You know we’re still 200 miles maybe more from the temple?! You really wanna do this every night and day until we’re there!
Aes Sedai: I rarely do things because I want to. They are both waiting for us at Asgard.
Leona: You know what the trial will decide. He’s a man. He can channel. We will gentle him. Here or there the result is the same.
Aes Sedai: The stone temple and the women within it have stood for three thousand years not because we did what was expedient but felt appropriate at the time given the circumstances. We stand today because our sisters have always done what was right.
Leona: Well I don’t wanna do my shifts with Myara.
Aes Sedai: On that at least we agree.
Leona: Perhaps the last days are coming after all.
Analysis: The last scene happens on the way to Tar Valon, where Logain is to stand trial. He is escorted by a group of Aes Sedai, including Liandrin, who is arguing for gentling their captive on the spot.
As ever with audition scripts, it is difficult to say what will end up making it to the screen in the end. Fans have known for some time that Logain Ablar’s capture will play a big role in the first season, so this shouldn’t come as a surprise. It looks like Liandrin will be one of the Aes Sedai sent out to capture him, and her rivalry with Moraine shows at various points.
In an unrelated note, we can can also confirm that actor Michael D’Cruze (Tyrant, Doctors) will play the role of Zahir in The Wheel of Time. The name seems to be an original one, but given D’Cruze’s Asian looks, we could see him playing a borderlander.
That concludes our little update. As filming progresses, we hope to learn more about the show’s plot and characters soon. Stay tuned!