Scott Ian: Fender Made Millions From ’Game of Thrones’ Promo Video but Didn’t Give Us Anything

In a recent fan Q&A, Anthrax rhythm guitarist Scott Ian said that neither he nor other guitar legends involved in the “Game of Thrones” theme performance were fairly compensated for the promo. The video, which came out in 2019, also featured Nuno Bettencourt, Tom Morello, and Brad Paisley, all playing Fender’s Sigil Collection — three Custom Shop guitar models worth between $25,000 and $35,000.

Asked about the matter by a fan and whether they got to keep their “Game of Thrones”-themed guitars that they played in these videos, Ian replied (transcribed by Killer Guitar Rigs):

“No. We all thought that was going to be the thing at the end of the session, that we would each get to have the one we played, but no, because usually that’s what happens, and no, it didn’t happen.”

You can check out the 2019 video in the embedded player below.

The Game Of Thrones Theme Song | Fender Custom Shop | Fender

Ian continued:

“And then I’ll let you in on a little secret: so a couple of weeks later, we all get a very nice email from Fender… And I have nothing bad to say about Fender. I play Jackson guitars and EVH amps; it’s all under the Fender umbrella, and they’ve treated me very fantastically over the years.”

“And we all get this very nice email about how many millions of views this thing has gotten, and how many of these custom very expensive, very expensive, like… I think the Lannister one was like 40 grand or something to have built.”

ANTHRAX Scott Ian Panel – Steel City Con August 2023

“And they sold a sh*t ton of these custom-built guitars based on this video, that they’re like, ‘thank you so much for doing this for us’, and all that.”

As Scott also added, Nuno Bettencourt hit him up as soon as he saw his e-mail:

“So I get a text from Nuno, not five minutes after these emails — they obviously emailed everybody involved at the same time — and he’s like, ‘These mother… — excuse my language — these motherf***ers’, he goes, ‘I just did the math, they made about 9 million dollars on the fucking video we made and they couldn’t even give us a guitar!’ And I’m like, ‘Hey, brother, you’re preaching to the choir, I’m with you.’ Again, I love Fender but dammit, I want one of those.”

Game of Thrones Sigil Collection | Custom Shop | Fender

Fender’s Sigil Collection, done by Fender Custom Shop, featured three models. These were House Stark Telecaster, House Lannister Jaguar, and House Targaryen Stratocaster. The prices for these were $25,000, $30,000 and $35,000 respectively. These were all hand-made by Fender Custom Shop’s Principal Master Builder Ron Thorn and were done by individual orders.

Elsewhere in the interview, Ian was also asked about things going wrong on stage during Anthrax’s shows and whether he has any stories to share. The thrash metal guitar legend replied:

“Not from our end because our equipment is so bulletproof with redundant rigs — if one amp goes down, instantly, my tech is able to just switch over. It’s not like I’m sitting up there with one amp, and if it goes down, ‘What do I do?’ We have stuff we’ve had wired for so long.”

Anthrax - Live Noize -1991 Full concert [HD]

Discussing it further, Ian also addressed the unfortunate trend of concertgoers throwing stuff at artists:

“But sometimes, like I noticed lately in shows, a lot of artists have been getting shit thrown at them, and shows stopping because people are hitting people in the head with cell phones and, like, what the fuck?”

“Because I remember back in the day, especially in the mid and late ’80s, people liked to throw fireworks at you when you were on stage. I’m sure many of you have lit a whole pack of firecrackers — you throw it, and it’s like, ‘Papapapapapa!’ People would throw that shit at the stage, and you’d be jumping around trying to dodge it.”

Anthrax - Persistence Of Time 30th Anniversary Remastered - Episode 3 - Iron Maiden

But, as Ian adds, they just weren’t tolerating this stuff:

“But we didn’t put up with that shit — when that would happen, we would fight people, and we didn’t have to recover from it; the people that were getting kicked and punched had to.”

“We were once opening for Maiden at this big outdoor venue in Irvine, California in ’90 or something, and some dude kept throwing firecrackers at us.”

“And I looked around, trying to see who was doing it because it couldn’t have been from that far away. I said twice to the crowd, ‘You all can see and hear — because it’s 15,000 people — someone keeps throwing firecrackers at us; you do it one more time, and we’re leaving, we’re done.'”

Anthrax - (Fillmore) Philadelphia,Pa 8.28.22 (Final Night Of Tour) Full Show

” And everyone’s booing. We start playing, I think, ‘I Am the Law,’ we start playing again and ‘Papapapapa!’, firecrackers. We fucking stop the song right there. And I’m like, ‘Who the fuck did that?’ And three, four rows deep, all these people are pointing at one guy, ‘It’s him! It’s him!'”

“So security guards go running, and they grab this guy out of the seats. So we’re up on stage, and to get the guy out of the venue, they had to bring him past the first row out, like that way.”

“As they start bringing him this way, I just throw my guitar down, I jump down, and I just fucking nail the dude. Meanwhile, as I’m punching the guy, I see a foot flying through the air past my head. And it’s Frankie [Belladonna]. He had done like a fucking flying dropkick off the stage, like Jackie Chan shit. And like, ‘BAM’ — nails this dude with this.”

Anthrax live | Rockpalast | 2019

“I’m like, ‘What the fuck?’ And then all the security guys back off, and we’ve figured out that this guy has learned his lesson. The guy gets up to come at us, so Frankie and I hit him, then we got back, and the whole crowd is chanting, ‘ANTHRAX! ANTHRAX!’, it’s this bloodlust in the air, and then security grabs the student, they drag him out, and no more firecrackers after that.”

“And then after the show, we’re sitting in the dressing room like, ‘Wow, that was crazy.’ And the sheriff shows up. Sheriff and two deputies come knocking on the door, and we’re ‘Oh fuck, we’re going to jail for assault. Goddamn, we should get the fuck out of here as soon as we’re done.'”

“And the sheriff says, ‘Well, we’re just here to see if you guys want to press charges against the guy for throwing fireworks.’ We’re like, ‘Oh, we thought we were in trouble because…’ ‘No, it was self-defense.’ So we didn’t press any charges. We said, ‘We think he learned his lesson.’ And we let him off the hook after that. But yeah, that shit used to go on all the time.”

Anthrax - Live Wacken 2019 (Full Show HD)

Photos: Fender (YouTube screenshot), WanderingTrad (Anthrax Tuska 2019 (1) (Cropped))

  • David Slavkovic

    David always planned for music to be nothing more than a hobby. However, after a short career as an agricultural engineer he ended up news editor at KillerGuitarRigs, senior editor at, as well as a freelance contributor to online magazines such as GuitaristNextdoor and brands like Sam Ash.