Game of Thrones has had its share of recasts and near-misses over the years, but it’s genuinely saddening to miss out on the great Mahershala Ali. The Moonlight and Luke Cage star apparently put in for a role in Season 2 (admittedly not the best), revealing what thwarted his audition in a new interview.

Ali dropped by Jimmy Kimmel Live! on Wednesday, in the process sharing a brief anecdote of his audition for Game of Thrones. The description of a merchant who ends up locked in a safe undoubtedly fits Xaro Xhoan Daxos (Nonso Anozie), a character that appeared in Season 2, not Season 3, as Ali claims.

In any case, something as simple as an audition stool with no back threw the actor of his planned body language, and apparently cost him the part. That isn’t to say that future Game of Thrones seasons couldn’t find a role for Ali, though the show’s existing rarity of American actors, compounded with Ali’s increased notoriety would make it unlikely.

In any case, we’ll still have Ali in Alita: Battle Angel, and likely the fifth season of House of Cards. How quaint, exaggerated political theatrics once felt.

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