A friend in Belfast brought to our attention this breaking news from the Belfast Telegraph, revealing that HBO has served notice that it will no longer be holding on to its lease on the sprawling Paint Hall studio complex following the wrapping up of the “Long Night” prequel.
More importantly, however, the article indicates that NI Screen was aware that the House of the Dragon prequel series was definitely or at least unlikely to be filmed in Northern Ireland, which is a shock to some but perhaps not to others:
(Above: A photo from the season 1 set visit, taken in the bowels of the Paint Hall as Bryan Cogman led George R.R. Martin, Parris McBride [the photographer], and I between sets.)
A very interesting post at the Wild Cards World official website from veteran TV writer and producer Michael Cassutt (a long-time member of the Wild Cards Consortium, and heavily involved in the present work on the two Wild Cards being developed at Hulu) discusses what goes on in the writing room when shows are developed and seasons are broken down, but one particular detail caught our eye as he turned to discuss a number of genre-fiction writers who have become involved in TV shows:
“And some novelists have made the leap. Michael Chabon – Michael Chabon! – is showrunning DISCOVERY for CBS All-Access. Charlie Jane Anders is in L.A. right now, working in a room. Close to home, novelists Daniel Abraham and Ty Franck have worked in the room for THE EXPANSE, one of the most acclaimed SF TV series ever, for five seasons now. And other members of the WC consortium have been blessed with these opportunities, including David Anthony Durham on one of the GAME OF THRONES prequels, and Saladin Ahmed on FOUNDATION. Max Gladstone did time in three different mini-rooms, not for the four big TV drama markets listed above, but for the vital and growing world of web series, such as WIZARD SCHOOL DROPOUT.”
Durham has written numerous novels, most of them historical, but also a well-reviewed fantasy trilogy, Acacia. He’s also been part of the Wild Cards Consortium since 2011, when he contributed to Fort Freak. Because of this connection to the sphere of George R.R. Martin collaborators, we suspect that Cassutt has let slip that Durham has been added to the writing staff of House of the Dragon following its series order. As some will recall, an initial team of writers was named by George as having helped develop the series prior to the order, but it would not be strange if others came onboard after that stage.
That said, it’s also possible that Durham was involved in the now-cancelled Long Night pilot, or perhaps one of the pitches for other successors that have now been put on indefinite hold. Currently, Durham’s own website and Twitter have no further information on the subject, although his new Twitter account does note that next year will see the publication of a new novel for him, a fantasy YA set in ancient Egypt titled Shadow Prince.
Last night, the trades had word from the HBO’s session at the TCA Winter gathering, with executive Casey Bloys discussing the status of post-Game of Thrones successor shows and the fact that he expected House of the Dragons would not premiere before 2022.
News is moving fast. We posted just a little while ago about Condal’s series getting a rumored pilot order… and now word is that the show, titled House of the Dragon, now has a full series order for ten epiodes, according to Variety. Condal and Miguel Sapochnik will be co-showrunners, with George R.R. Martin and Vince Gerardis as executive producers alongside.
This is an amazingly fast news day, to say the least.
In all the reactions to the news that Jane Goldman’s pilot has gotten a pass from HBO, we missed Michael Ausiello of TV Line—who we know has a lot of sources in the industry—reporting that the Ryan Condal-helmed Fire & Blood-based project has an official order for its pilot. To quote Ausiello:
According to Deadline, the Jane Goldman-led pilot set in the era leading up to the Long Night is not getting a series pickup from HBO. While there’s no official statement from HBO to this end, reporting has it that Goldman has been contacting cast and crew to inform them of this.
As we noted at Worldcon, Linda and I did some consulting work on the project. Our interaction with Jane and fellow executive producer James Farrell impressed us with their dedication and interest in the setting and its history.
Some guessed this might be the outcome after word spilled last month that a new pilot was nearing an order from HBO, one somehow based on the Targaryen history in the Targaryen history presented in Fire & Blood (Amazon) and being developed by Ryan Condal. At his “Not a Blog”, George R.R. Martin spoke very approvingly of the bible and pilot script Condal had put together, but so far there has been no clear confirmation that this is the next pilot to be filmed.
Addendum: Over at EW, James Hibberd shares more news about the pilot being passed on, including a quote from one of the actors prior to the news discussing it, as well as Hibberd’s information on Condal’s proposed pilot which Hibberd indicates will lead into the Dance of the Dragons.
Earlier this month, I posted about our experience at the Dublin Worldcon and the Belfast Eurocon. But in Belfast, I had the opportunity—courtesy of Northern Ireland Tourism, who’ve invited us to see the “Game of Thrones Territory” twice before; the first of these is recorded here—to do a bit more than just convention events. Not only did I get to visit the Belfast leg of the Game of Thrones Exhibition and the Glass of Thrones stained glass monuments placed at notable locations within the city.
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Over at Not a Blog, George R.R. Martin comments on the recent news that HBO is nearing ordering a pilot for a Game of Thrones successor, this one based on the Targaryen history in Fire and Blood. Notably, GRRM chose to cite the Entertainment Weekly account from James Hibberd as the “most complete”, and that one (unlike stories from Deadline and The Hollywood Reporter) is explicit that the focus of this show is the Dance of the Dragons, something that the other stories seemed to underplay or reject.
Exclusive word from Entertainment Weekly, who has the scoop that HBO is “nearing a pilot order” for a second prequel, this one with a script written by Ryan Condal (who is noted to be one of several writers who have worked on it). And the subject of that prequel? The Dance of the Dragons, first described in detail in The World of Ice and Fire and then expanded upon in even greater detail in Fire & Blood.
At the end of September, the Game of Thrones Live Concert Experience will perform at the Santa Fe Opera. Santa Fe happens to be George’s home turf, and as it happens this performance will be extra special because it’s being put on as the first major fundraising event for the Stagecoach Foundation, founded by GRRM to advance education and opportunities in the film and television field in New Mexico. Net proceeds from the event will be donated to the Stagecoach Foundation, and to entice attendees some very unique opportunities are being offered as part of various VIP packages which include a pre-show meet and greet with both George R.R. Martin and award-winning composer Ramin Djawadi as well as a photo opportunity. Some additional goodies listed below, according to the various tiers.
VIP Front Row Meet & Greet Tier: ticket, signed leather-bound set of A Song of Ice and Fire, two passes to Meow Wolf, and a Faceless Man coin.
VIP Gold Meet & Greet Tier : ticket, signed Fire & Blood, two passes to Meow Wolf, and a Faceless Man coin.
VIP Silver Meet & Great Tier: ticket, two passes to Meow Wolf and a Faceless Man coin.
Tickets are sold through Ticketmaster, and a handful of non-VIP tickets still remain.
Back in March, Adidas released a series of Game of Thrones-inspired Ultraboost sneakers in collaboration with HBO, and those six designs sold like hotcakes with many of the more in-demand sizes being entirely sold out at retailers and being sold with significant markups in the aftermarket. These shoes had been highly anticipated by fans of the show and sneakerheads alike, with teasers appearing months in advance…
... and then Adidas surprised many (even some dedicated followers of Adidas’s release schedules) by unveiling a seventh (of course) design, one that was not only distinct from the rest but also based on an entirely different model. HBO kindly arranged a review copy, though as it fell right during our vacation we’ve only had a chance to give them a good look now.
The Speedfactory AM4 The Throne shoe is described as a running shoe design, using a very comfortable knit and Adidas’s Responsive Boost midsole (somewhat different in feel and design to the Ultraboost material of the other shoes).
HBO has revealed that the Game of Thrones: The Complete Collection Blu-ray set will have what looks to be one of the most stylish, interesting collector’s boxes out there thanks to clever use of Robert Ball‘s signature artwork. A couple of videos have been released along with the announcement, as well as a detailed press release concerning the exclusive extras that are a part of the set, which is due to be released on December 3rd alongside the season 8 stand-alone collection sets (4K and regular Bluray/DVD) and a full complete collection without the limited edition packaging featured below.
“Bloodmoon”—the likely-temporary title for the Game of Thrones prequel headed by Jane Goldman—has officially begun filming, according to a report from James Hibberd at EW. There were rumors filming in fact started last month, but those flew in the face of Casey Bloys and others indicating that June was the start date.
Linda has roped me into discussing the final season of Game of Thrones, with an eye to discussing what the choices of the showrunners mean (or don’t) regarding George’s plans for A Song of Ice and Fire. We think it’s a lot murkier than some have taken it, but see the epic, near-2 hours video (with handy timestamps in the description to jump to particular characters of interest) to learn more:
The episode guide for “The Iron Throne”, the 6th and final episode of Game of Thrones, has been updated with Linda’s review (currently livestreaming). We’ll embed it below:
HBO has yet to release it’s behind-the-scenes extras, but once they are they’ll be added to the guide!