Game of Thrones Season 5 will see the absence of fan-favorites, Bran Stark and his affable protector Hodor.
This information was confirmed recently during an Australian ABC News interview with actor Kristian Nairn, who plays Hodor on the popular HBO series.
"We [Hodor and Bran] have a season off and we have a year's hiatus, solely because I imagine our storyline is up to the end of the books," he explained. "So, I get my year off now to do Rave of Thrones and gallivant all over the world."
Nairn, who happens to be disc-jockey, is going on a tour at Game of Thrones-themed dance parties. The rave comment was an obvious reference to his upcoming schedule.
One reason the characters are not included in the next season is because Game of Thrones author George R.R. Martin has yet to update their story. The TV show is based almost entirely from Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire book series.
Consequently, HBO is still waiting for Martin to finish writing the next installment in the franchise. This situation became the subject of a recent parody by comedian Weird al Yankovic, who performed live at the 66th Primetime Emmy Awards.
"Type...George. Type as fast as you can. We need more scripts!" Yankovic sang - right before Martin was handed a typewriter.
At this time, Game of Thrones Season 5 is being filmed. The next season is expected to premiere on HBO in April next year. In regards to plot, the story covers material from Martin's fourth and fifth novels.
In the TV show, Hodor looks after Bran who was paralyzed in the pilot episode. The last time viewers saw the duo was when they entered the home of the Three-Eyed Raven. Even so, the inseparable companions are likely to return in future seasons.
The Emmys 2014: Weird Al Yankovic Parodies 'Game of Thrones' and Other Shows (NBC)