The Tower of Joy sequence was one of the most anticipated scenes in the history of Game of Thrones.

For years fans suspected that the truth about Jon Snow's parentage lay inside those walls but the show's creators made us wait until season six of the show to know for sure. Teasing us with a scene outside of the tower earlier in the season, it wasn't until the finale that they finally allowed us to follow a young Ned Stark (Robert Aramayo) up those steps to find his sister Lyanna. 

Some fans might have been surprised to see that it was Irish actress Aisling Franciosi portraying the woman who we now know is Jon Snow's mother. In a bid to keep the reveal secret, Franciosi wasn't mentioned in any casting announcements for the show in case fans guessed she might be playing the younger sister of Ned Stark. 

We spoke with the 23 year old actress after the finale aired and here's seven tidbits she shared about Game of Thrones, The Fall and weird fan encounters. 


1. She didn't tell anyone she'd been cast as Lyanna until the episode aired. 

She was wary of the backlash that can happen when plot details are given away and was keen not to ruin what would be a crucial scene for fans. She even kept her closest friends in the dark. 

"You get wrapped up in things that you enjoy watching and to have someone in any way ruin it or spoil it can be pretty devastating so I was definitely not going to do it with something as big as [Game of Thrones]. I had a few friends who didn't even recognise me until someone else said it to them. I got messages saying 'I didn't even recognise you! What the hell?!"


2. She wasn't a Game of Thrones fan before she landed the gig.

While season six was in production, most fans were anxiously speculating what would be the fate of Jon Snow, but Aisling wasn't one of them. She hadn't even seen an episode before auditioning for the role. 

"I'll just be honest. It had been on my list of things to watch but I hadn't actually seen it yet. And when I auditioned for the role, I was like 'OK I'm going to start getting into it...' Then I was binge watching episodes, like eight in a row. "


3. She didn't even know she'd be playing Lyanna Stark until she'd been cast.

So secretive are the producers of the show that they didn't let Aisling know that it was Lyanna she was reading for until she'd been cast. 

"They didn't have the real names of anyone. So I didn't actually know I was playing Lyanna until I got the actual scene. Which was much closer to shooting time."


4. She knows everything that Lyanna said to Ned on her deathbed. 

On her deathbed, Lyanna whispers to Ned that she needs him to hide Jon from Robert Baratheon or he'll kill him. Half of the conversation is inaudible and there has been plenty of speculation as to what that half of the conversation involved. Many fans have dismissed it, suggesting that the actors were probably miming for that section rather than saying anything of substance. However, one redditor who watched the scene countless times said she was pretty sure Lyanna was telling Ned Jon's real name. While Aisling wouldn't fill in the blanks of the scene for us, she did confirm whether or not that theory had substance. 

"Yeah I did whisper an actual sentence. I don't know what they're going to do going forward and I don't know what importance it has so I'm definitely not going to risk saying anything."


5. She doesn't know if we'll see Lyanna again in the series. 

We've seen Lyanna Stark twice in the show now through Bran's time travel and now that we know the truth about Jon Snow's mother, the question is will we see his father and both of his parents together before the series finishes? 

"I really don't know. I haven't heard anything yet so it depends on what they want to do going forward. I'm as much in the dark as everyone else on that one."


6. She'll be back on our TV screens for season 3 of The Fall this autumn.

Game of Thrones isn't the only hit TV show she's involved in. She'll be reprising her role as Katie in season three of The Fall later this year. 

"We finished in the middle/end of March. I think it's meant to come out in Autumn for sure, maybe around September but I'm not sure."


7. A lot of fans of The Fall really don't like her character.

Katie is probably one of the least popular characters on the show and a lot of fans haven't been shy about letting Aisling know exactly how they feel about her.

"People will come up to me and be like 'God, you're such a bitch!' or 'I wanted to give you a right slap!' and I'm just like 'Please tell me you mean the character and not me.'"