Will There Be More Than One ‘Game of Thrones’ Spinoff? HBO Confirms Its Plans
Game of Thrones fans learned last year that HBO was developing five separate spinoffs, but will more than one of those actually make it to the air?
HBO confirmed at the Television Critics Association press tour today that for now, the plan is to only make a single Game of Thrones spinoff. The network explained that the reason to develop five scripts at once was to increase the odds of finding one that really worked; then, they’d go ahead with that one rather than all five.
“The reason we did multiple scripts, in the development process, [we knew] out of five we’d be lucky to get one we’re excited about,” Casey Bloys, HBO’s programming president, said today.
Bloys also said that there are no plans to make any other Game of Thrones spinoffs at this time.
For now, HBO is moving forward with the prequel series, which takes place about 10,000 years prior to the events of Game of Thrones. It will be set during the Age of Heroes, a period of time that many houses in Westeros trace their origins to.
Within the Game of Thrones lore, there’s a lot we don’t know about the Age of Heroes, and so by setting the series here, the show’s creators have a lot of freedom that they wouldn’t have if they had chosen to adapt an event from the series’ past like Robert’s Rebellion.
Still, we do know some things about the Age of Heroes, including the fact that this is when The Long Night took place, a winter that lasted for an entire generation. During this time, the White Walkers emerged as a threat, and the Children of the Forest and the First Men had to fight them.
This will clearly factor into the plot of the prequel, and George R.R. Martin has even suggested that the show itself could be called The Long Night (although that’s just his personal preference, and he says he would be “surprised” if HBO ended up choosing that name).
Back when it was reported that five Game of Thrones spinoffs were in development, Martin also took to his blog to clarify that this only meant that five scripts were in development and that it was unlikely (but not impossible) they would all make it to the air.
“Decades of experience in television and film have taught me that nothing is ever really certain…but I do think it’s very unlikely that we’ll be getting four (or five) series,” he said. “At least not immediately. What we do have here is an order for four — now five — pilot scripts. How many pilots will be filmed, and how many series might come out of that, remains to be seen.”
The pilot for this Game of Thrones spinoff was written by Jane Goldman, who has not worked on Game of Thrones but whose work has included collaborations with Matthew Vaughn on the recent X-Men films and the Kingsman movies. The pilot is expected to begin shooting early next year, although no director is attached, nor are any members of the cast.
It should be noted that HBO hasn’t actually ordered this spinoff yet; they’ve only ordered a pilot. So it’s technically possible that no Game of Thrones spinoff will end up happening at all, although it seems unlikely that HBO will pass up that opportunity. HBO had previously said that the spinoff wouldn’t air until at least a year after Game of Thrones wraps up, so that means we’re looking at a 2020 premiere date for this show at the earliest.