The longer than usual wait for a shortened season of Game of Thrones is just around the corner! Season 7 marks the arrival of winter in Westeros, so production was delayed by a few months, so that the cast and crew could wait for an end of year shoot.
While the season 7 premiere being pushed to a summer release from a spring one was expected, most fans assumed that the eighth and final season would just premiere next summer, as well. In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, HBO programming president Casey Bloys has revealed that may not be the case. Here’s what he told the outlet
“They have to write the episodes and figure out the production schedule. We’ll have a better sense of [whether the final season will air in 2018 or 2019] once they get further into the writing.”
Season 8 will only be six episodes long, so it does seem a bit strange that they would take even longer to craft the final season. There are a few reasons for the long wait, however. Assuming that those six episodes will have the same budget as a regular ten episode season, then you can expect more time spent shooting these episodes. Considering the final season may play more like a six hour climax for everything that has come before, we might expect Lord of the Rings-level battles coming up. Bloys also had a chance to talk about the prequels. Here’s what he said:
“I want to put the prequels in context. It should go without saying I love having a show with this much intense interest around it. Even the smallest bit of information is a big deal and I appreciate that. But I wanted to make sure fans know this is a really embryonic process. I haven’t even seen outlines. In the press at large, everybody said, ‘there are four spinoffs’ and they assume that means each one is happening and we’re going to have a new Game of Thrones show per quarter. That’s not what’s going on. The idea is not to do four shows. The bar set by [Benioff and Weiss] is so high that my hope is to get one show that lives up to it. Also, this is a long-term plan. Our No. 1 goal is the seventh season this summer and getting the eighth season written and aired.”
We already speculated that this would be the case and George R.R. Martin seemed to confirm it as well. It also seems that HBO isn’t really planning on getting to the prequel series anytime soon — or at least, not in earnest until Game of Thrones has come to a conclusion.
Game of Thrones season 7 will premiere on July 16, 2017 on HBO.