News has emerged about the upcoming Game of Thrones prequel series that is looking to both tap into and erase the fandom fever and trauma that has come out of the final season. Despite the blatant cash grab of making this series (where is our True Blood prequel with Pam and Eric, HBO?), there is a lot of interesting stuff in the history of Westeros that I am interested in and will allow myself to be pandered to about. Recently, A Song of Ice and Fire author George R.R. Martin shared some new details about the upcoming series with EW.
A reminder that the showrunner for the show is Jane Goldman, who has worked on the screenplays for the Kingsman movies, X-Men: First Class, Kick-Ass, and Stardust (among others), and the pilot is currently being filmed in Northen Ireland. The series takes place around 5,000 years before the events in Game of Thrones and leads up to an epic confrontation with the White Walkers that is known as The Long Night.
What we know from Martin’s interview is that we are going to be dealing with a lot more kingdoms, because the further back we go in history, the less unified the world is made up to be. “We talk about the Seven Kingdoms of Westeros; there were Seven Kingdoms at the time of Aegon’s Conquest,” Martin says. “But if you go back further then there are nine kingdoms, and 12 kingdoms, and eventually you get back to where there are a hundred kingdoms — petty kingdoms — and that’s the era we’re talking about here.”
Among the leaders of these kingdoms (mighty and petty) will be the Starks, because there must always be a Stark in Winterfell. This series will pre-date the Targaryens, which means no dragons, but there will be other creatures: “Obviously the White Walkers are here — or as they’re called in my books, The Others — and that will be an aspect of it,” Martin says. “There are things like direwolves and mammoths.”
Another element that will not be there is House Lannister. During this time period that territory is still ruled by the Casterlys, for whom Casterly Rock is named after. Will the Lannister House creator, Lann the Clever, be showing up? That remains unclear. Someone will have to carry the incest vibes.
So far there are three women who have been cast in “leading” roles (Naomi Watts, Naomi Ackie, and Denise Gough), but Martin insists that the series won’t have any leads and will be more of a large ensemble cast. As for the name of the series, it hasn’t been laid down in stone, but The Longest Night is a variant on the Long Night that Martin would like. “That would be pretty good,” he says.
Martin confirms something else important—in terms of writing he’s only working on one thing: the sixth Ice and Fire novel The Winds of Winter.
(via Entertainment Weekly, image: HBO)
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