Game Of Thrones season five will premiere on HBO on April 12, the organization announced at the Television Critics Association winter press tour. An expanded cast has already been announced, including a slew of family members of Prince Oberyn, played by Pedro Pascal in season four.

Game of ThronesGame of Thrones will return for season 5 in April

The show's fourth season is up for Best TV Series Drama at the Golden Globes this weekend and was nominated for 14 Emmys this past summer, eventually coming away with the gongs for visual effects, makeup, costumes and art direction.

Sunday April 12 is a huge date for HBO, with the fourth season of Julia Louis-Dreyfus' comedy Veep and the second season of technology drama Silicon Valley also premiering. 

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HBO announced earlier this week that the final two episodes of season four of Game of Thrones - along with an exclusive trailer for season five - will play in IMAX theaters for a week beginning on January 23. 

Game of Thrones, based on the A Song of Ice and Fire saga by George R.R. Martin, is now the highest-rated show in HBO history, passing The Sopranos' previous record last season.

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It is likely that season five will feature several new locations, with Tyrion and Arya last seen on boats heading across the Narrow Sea. That will likely mean we'll get more time in the Free Cities of Pentos and Braavos. Word also has it that several dead characters are coming back, possibly Charles Dance's Tywin Lannister (maybe in some flashback scenes, or hallucinations).

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