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HBO is officially moving forward with a new Game of Thrones project called House of the Dragon. After the studio ditched several ideas for the franchise, executives decided to order 10 episodes of the prequel, which is set hundreds of years before the events in the original series. Here’s everything we know about the highly anticipated House of the Dragon.

Game of Thrones House of Dragon
Emilia Clarke (Daenerys Targaryen) in ‘Game of Thrones’ | Photo by HBO

What’s ‘House of the Dragon’ about?

HBO has been tight-lipped about releasing details, but we know House of the Dragon is an adaptation of the 2018 book, Fire & Blood, by George R.R. Martin.

According to Entertainment Weekly, the book covers the rise of House Targaryen in the first 150 years of their reign. Martin is expected to release a second book about the family that will cover the events leading up to Game of Thrones, including Robert Baratheon’s rebellion.

The story, meanwhile, begins with Aegon Targaryen’s arrival to Westeros along with his sister-wives, Rhaenys and Visenya. It then covers all of the Targaryens who sat on the Iron Throne, with each ruler getting a chapter of their own.

The series will likely skip a lot of the history included in the book, especially with only 10 episodes in the first season. In fact, sources claim that the show will focus on a particular time in the family’s history referred to as the Targaryen Civil War, also called the Dance of Dragons.

For those that don’t know, the war was fought between Rhaenyra Targaryen and Aegon for power over Westeros. The war was devastating for both sides and the family never really recovered from it.

HBO has not confirmed that the Dance of Dragons storyline will be featured in the House of the Dragon, but it seems like a likely place to go.

What other houses will be included in the ‘Game of Thrones’ prequel?

While the prequel will focus on the Targaryens, there are other families that will appear on the show.  This includes the Lannisters and the Starks, both of which were active in the civil war.

Fans will also see the Baratheons, Greyjoys, and the Tyrells — though all of the characters will be new.

The prequel was pitched by co-creators Ryan Condal and Martin, though the original storyline was created by Bryan Cogman, who worked on Game of Thrones.

Game of Thrones Emilia Clarke Kit Harington
‘Game of Thrones’ stars Emilia Clarke and Kit Harington | Photo by Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic for HBO

Cogman, of course, is now developing the new Lord of the Rings show and will remain a showrunner for the prequel.

The Game of Thrones spin-off will also feature some familiar names in the director’s chair. This includes the likes of Miguel Sapochnik, who helmed critically acclaimed episodes like “The Long Night,” “Battle of the Bastards,” and “Hardhome.”

Sapochnik is expected to helm the opening installment of the prequel and will direct additional episodes as well. 

D.B. Weiss and David Benioff, meanwhile, are not going to be a part of the new project.

HBO cancels another ‘Game of Thrones’ prequel

Although fans are excited about the upcoming prequel, HBO has decided against moving forward with another proposed prequel. The studio rejected a project from Jane Goldman that was set to star Naomi Watts. The series was going to take place thousands of years prior to the events in Game of Thrones.

The spin-off was expected to cover the first war with the White Walkers and Martin even supplied the series with a title, The Long Night.

Goldman and her team shot a pilot episode for the prequel a few months ago, but HBO decided it wasn’t good enough to fund a full season. It is unclear why HBO canceled the prequel, but the move will definitely affect the future of the franchise.

As far as the approved prequel is concerned, the studio has officially ordered 10 episodes. We still do not know how many seasons it will go, but it will be interesting to see how it compares to the original show.

HBO has yet to announce a cast for House of Dragon, though none of the original actors are expected to reprise their roles.

The Game of Thrones prequel is expected to premiere sometime in 2021.