Some information is coming out about the next season of HBO‘s Game of Thrones after a spoilery LA Times interview with showrunners David Benioff and Dan Weiss. Season 2 will begin shooting in July, staying the in the same Northern Ireland location. Producers are also looking at casting for tons of new characters. But what might be the most exciting news is that the author of the original source material, George R.R. Martin, will be stepping up to write a full episode of the show. No spoilers about this yet, but it’s said to be a “pivotal” episode.
[Martin’s] writing an episode for the coming season, which is probably the heaviest, the . Now that we’re on the ground here in Belfast and working with the visual effects team and production team that’s going to create the sets, we have to talk to George about what that looks like. He’s just as involved as in Season 1.
Martin has served as a executive producer on Game of Thrones since it began. But rather than being one of those execs who steps away to let the creative team do its thing without him, he has always been very involved in the creative process, providing oversight and giving “report cards” on the finished product.
You may recall that this is not the first time Martin has written for television. He’s written teleplays for the new Twilight Zone series and Beauty and the Beast. Benioff and Weiss actually discussed the give-and-take involved in TV writing by citing an experience Martin had on one Twilight Zone episode:
Benioff: Did we tell you the story about [Martin’s experience as a TV writer on], I think it was “The New Twilight Zone”? He had written a scene with knights battling on horses at Stonehenge, and the director came to him and said, ‘You can have the horses or you can have Stongehenge.’ That’s how we frame things: Sorry, we wish we could do all this, but we have to make a horse/Stonehenge choice.
Weiss: I don’t remember George’s choice in the original story, but I hope it was Stonehenge.
Again, the full interview does contain spoilers, so please be forewarned before reading. And as for Stonehenge vs. horses: it depends on how many horses and what they’d be doing. And if anyone happens to know which episode they’re referring to, please let us know what he went with. Because now we’re curious.