Some big announcements on the Game of Thrones front.
News first broke that the previously announced Naomi Watts-starring prequel series, which would take place around 1000 years before Game of Thrones, would not be going forward. A pilot had already been filmed for the prequel project, coming from Kingsman screenwriter Jane Goldman and Game of Thrones author George R.R. Martin.
As reported by Deadline, the pilot, directed by S.J. Clarkson (Jessica Jones, The Defenders), went through a long post-production and re-editing after HBO was unhappy with the initial result. There were also whispers of some troubles during filming in Northern Ireland. Ultimately, HBO opted not to move ahead with a series.
HBO has, however, decided to move ahead with another prequel series; one based on the Game of Thrones companion book Fire & Blood.
Get ready for House of the Dragon, a prequel series that will be set 300 years before the events of GoT and will focus on House Targaryen. A 10-episode order has been handed to the show, meaning they’re going all in and are willing to skip the pilot stage and the long development process that’s usually taken on with HBO projects. Martin is on board as co-creator with Ryan Condal (Rampage, Colony). Condal will also be co-showrunning with Miguel Sapochnik, who directed six GoT episodes (Battle of the Bastards and Hardhome among them) and will be directing the pilot and other eps here.
On his blog, Martin wrote that he would be involved with the new series on a creative front, but would not be writing any scripts until he completed his long-awaited next book Winds of Winter.
“I expect to be involved in [House of the Dragon] to some extent… and, who knows, if things work out, I may even be able to script a few episodes, as I did for the first four seasons of GAME OF THRONES.
But… let me make this perfectly clear… I am not taking on any scripts until I have finished and delivered WINDS OF WINTER. Winter is still coming, and WINDS remains my priority, as much as I’d love to write an episode of HOUSE.”
“The Game of Thrones universe is so rich with stories,” Casey Bloys, president of HBO programming, said in a statement. “We look forward to exploring the origins of House Targaryen and the earlier days of Westeros along with Miguel, Ryan and George.”
Stay tuned for more developments on all things GoT. There is the potential that another series gets the greenlight, since four prequel projects were announced – and House of the Dragon isn’t one of them.