Benioff and Weiss on eight seasons and adaptation
By Ours is the Fury on in Press.

bwIn a new interview with Deadline, Game of Thrones executive producers David Benioff and D.B. Weiss discuss the benefits and the perils of adapting a popular book series, what they’re proud of,  and the difficulty of killing characters brought to life onscreen.

It was in an interview with Deadline that Benioff and Weiss first referred to the show with the infamous description of “The Sopranos meets Middle Earth,” something that Weiss says now makes him “cringe,” in the new article.

The most interesting tidbit however is this quote from David Benioff near the end of the piece:

And for us what is most enticing about this series is, if we’re lucky enough to get to the end, there will be 80 hours of screen time with a beginning, middle, and a real end. Not something that feels like 80 separate episodes…

Benioff’s estimate of eighty hours implies he is looking at eight seasons of Game of Thrones, whereas producer Frank Doelger had previously referred to seven seasons as a possibility.

Benioff and Weiss chat as well about something that is often debated by fans- George R.R. Martin’s involvement in the process. Benioff states that they have a “really good relationship” with George, and that they’ve “definitely had disagreements; every season we have disagreements about certain things.” Weiss cites the need to “limit the number of new faces we see on the screen and [Martin] talking about the ‘butterfly effect’ that runs through the whole story” as the primary sources of disagreement between them.

And something that will surprise no one who listened to George’s “Blackwater” DVD commentary: Weiss also tells Deadline:

It drives him nuts that characters are fighting without wearing their helmets.

Ours is the Fury: Seriously, listen to the DVD commentary. He really can’t let go of the helmet thing. Also, that they’re not dead set on seven seasons makes me happy. I’m sure the number is in flux at the moment, and eight may not be a final total, but seven does seem like it may be cutting it short. I recommend reading the entire interview as it’s very in-depth and quite interesting.


176 Comments

  1. Nick Larter
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 10:26 am | Permalink

    I always assumed Doelger’s comment to be a casual off-the-cuff approximation rather than a statement of policy.

  2. Ours is the Fury
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 10:29 am | Permalink

    Nick Larter,

    Considering how much time producers spend discussing and planning the money aspects of things, I wouldn’t look at it as an off-the-cuff estimate on his part.

  3. darquemode
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 10:31 am | Permalink

    Nick Larter,

    Me too.
    I have always thought they have an 8 season plan.
    If ratings hold and the final two books are packed with events I think 9 seasons, even if highly unlikely, could be possible.

  4. ser pounce
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 10:31 am | Permalink

    There has yet to be a 10 hour season. 80 would be closer to 9. Also I think their estimates would be modest to seem like they’re not presuming too much before they get there

  5. Zack
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 10:32 am | Permalink

    I think I’d prefer 7 seasons over 9, and 8 over 7.

  6. Arkash
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 10:34 am | Permalink

    I think 9 seasons would be perfect.

    Anyway, great interview !

  7. Ours is the Fury
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 10:34 am | Permalink

    ser pounce,

    That’s why I said “estimate.” They’ve regularly referred to each season as “ten hours” even though it wasn’t really ten hours, so I think it’s safe to interpret eighty hours as a reference to eight seasons.

  8. Ser Tahu
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 10:34 am | Permalink

    ser pounce,
    ‘Hour’ is short hand for episode, unfortunately.

    However, I still insist that the eight season estimate that they are making is with the assumption that TWoW and ADoS will be one season each (an assumption that I believe will eventually prove to be wrong, necessitating a 9th season), NOT with the assumption that AFfC+ADwD together will only be one season.

  9. Chase
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 10:39 am | Permalink

    I know 9 or 10 seasons is a super optimistic thought but i just don’t see how it’s possible to even somewhat accurately adapt the books in only 7 or 8 seasons.

  10. MUGger
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 10:41 am | Permalink

    They mention a lovely young actress who doesn’t want to be killed off, but they have to off her. My money’s on Ygritte — I think she’s next in the queue.

  11. Chase
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 10:41 am | Permalink

    If they had found a way to get to the PW and have Tyrion arrested and Sansa in the vale by the end of season 3 then /spoiler MAYBE they could squeeze it into 8 seasons. But I guarantee winds and dream are going to be just as plot heavy as storm so it just isn’t possible in my estimation.

  12. Turncloak
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 10:41 am | Permalink

    I’d still prefer books 4 and 5 to be cut short and combined into 1 season. I don’t think these books have enough big moments to justify two seasons. Hopefully TWOW or ADOS turn out to be another Storm of Swords if their heart is set on 8 seasons. Though I still think they can do it in 7

  13. Alex Also
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 10:45 am | Permalink

    Cf men of the Night’s watch working behind the wall without hats. I’m surprised Kit Harrington still has ears.

  14. Jean
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 10:45 am | Permalink

    ser pounce,

    He does say “80 separate episodes…”, so 8 seasons.

  15. Turncloak
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 10:46 am | Permalink

    MUGger,

    Lets hope. A character that dies in the book should die in the show especially with such a large cast

  16. Zack
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 10:46 am | Permalink

    Ser Tahu,

    My expectation is a bit of the DwD material with carry over into the start of season 6, leaving most of 6 for WoW, which they can finish up in 7. Then a third or so of S7 and all of S8 can be DoS related. So it won’t translate 1:1 book: season for those two books.

    They’ve repeatedly mentioned how they’re not sticking to the books as adaptation points (and by the end of next year there’s no way Bran’s material won’t have gotten to the end as it has been written and completed to this point , for instance).

  17. Turncloak
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 10:48 am | Permalink

    Zack,

    Bran’s material right now has already caught up with A Dance with Dragons. I’ll be very surprised if he doesn’t meet Bloodraven by the end of season 4

  18. Alexandre Boivin
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 10:54 am | Permalink

    My biggest worry is that if he don’t release the book by 2014 he will never have the time to finish book 7 before the show catch up.

  19. Ser Tahu
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 10:55 am | Permalink

    Zack,
    I believe that Feast and Dance have enough good, eventful material for 1.5-2 seasons (depending on the storyline, although some will enter TWoW stuff sooner). As for Bran, I believe that season 4 will consist of a lot of invented material. My vague prediction is this:
    episodes 1-5: no more than two scenes, we get the backstory that was cut out of the last two seasons, such as the Knight of the Laughing Tree.
    episode 5 or 6: the take shelter in an abandoned wildling village. Crows start amassing outside
    episode 7: they are attacked by wights, only to be saved by Coldhands. It plays out in a way that is very similar to the chapter where Sam meets Coldhands in the book (except that it is Bran and co, not Sam and co)
    episode 8-10: one scene where it is actually revealed that Coldhands is a good guy, and that he serves the three-eyed raven).
    season 5 will then cover the Dance material, with them progressing to TWoW stuff in season 6. So that is one way they could avoid running out of material.

    Overall, I just don’t see how all, or even most, of Feast and Dance could be cut into a single season while preserving the pacing, plot integrity, and overall consistency of the story.

  20. Liam williams
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 10:57 am | Permalink

    I read an interviews well before season 3 where they talked of a ’80 hour film’ so this is nothing new and I presume their plan all along

  21. Caravaggio
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 10:57 am | Permalink

    Wonderful Deadline article. Best insight so far into the producers’ vision for the show at this point in its run.

    BUT! What makes me anxious is that the producers admit they and George are having the most disagreements about the endgame, i.e. the portion of the story that hasn’t been published yet. I fear for the day that the demands of the TV production (the producers) completely clash with the schedule of the books (the author), spiraling the series and D&D’s and GRRM’s relationship into chaos. Rough waters are ahead in this storied collaboration. I can only pray to the Old Gods and the New that there will be excellent resolutions to this.

  22. Zack
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 11:00 am | Permalink

    Turncloak,

    Yeah. I don’t see how in the world seasons five through seven leave him with much book material to work with and undoubtedly things will be invented.

    I’m merely saying that these are considerations that deserve attention. When you have one of your main characters already through everything that’s been written for him while many other characters still have two books worth of material…

    They can’t hold off the ever-encroaching need for post-DwD material too long.

  23. Unbowd UnbentUnHodor
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 11:01 am | Permalink

    As long as the rest of the seasons are interesting i think people will still watch. Although in my opinion I would rather 7 seasons of pure quality and exciting episodes rather than dragging it on.
    Im hoping tWoW and aDoS are like aSoS because that would be awesome. People who say 9 seasons are insane!

  24. Pau Soriano
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 11:06 am | Permalink

    Ser Tahu:
    ser pounce,
    ‘Hour’ is short hand for episode, unfortunately.

    However, I still insist that the eight season estimate that they are making is with the assumption that TWoW and ADoS will be one season each (an assumption that I believe will eventually prove to be wrong, necessitating a 9th season), NOT with the assumption that AFfC+ADwD together will only be one season.

    I think D&D know that and are selling the following to HBO : 8 seasons , with TWoW and ADoS being one season each and AFfC+ADwD 1,5-2…

    BUT with the idea that after we reach TWOW they will try to convince HBO that 9 would be better idea, both because TWOW and ADOS will be huge and to give Martin one more year.

    Yeah, I know, wishful thinking…:P

  25. bon
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 11:11 am | Permalink

    MUGger,

    I thought it was Sibell Kekili – Shae.

  26. Grijnwaald
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 11:13 am | Permalink

    I also get that with people not wearing adequate protection (helmets) when engaging in combat.

  27. Vladimir Bolton
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 11:15 am | Permalink

    Am I the only one around here who thinks that this interview is just a bit spoiler-y? I’m an Unsullied, so at least 2-3 comments in this interview seemed just a tad too revealing to me. Maybe you should warn people that there are some vague spoilers in this interview.

  28. Teresa
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 11:17 am | Permalink

    A poster in another thread some time ago (I’m sorry, I can’t remember who) mentioned 8 TV seasons plus a theatrical feature film. That could be plausible. My interpretation: 8 seasons to resolve the battle of the White Walkers storyline, its aftermath and the coming of winter; with a big-budget event movie (maybe released the following summer) to answer once and for all who gets the Iron Throne.

  29. Alexandre Boivin
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 11:19 am | Permalink

    i just red the interview and i can assume that they don’t really care if martin don’t finish the books before they catch up with him, becaud they said, we know how it will finish and we just have to figure how to go to that ending.

    On the other hand they don’t have to wait for the book to come out because they have george with them, i assume by the time they film book 6 it will be out or almost complete, and maybe the same thing for book 7.

  30. Hodor's Bastard
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 11:26 am | Permalink

    Teresa,

    The more I ponder the end-game of ASoI&F, the more I believe that “achieving the throne” is not the ultimate goal but rather it is merely surviving the next battle and staying alive. The throne is a curse and whoever sits upon it is doomed. It may even be destroyed at some point during ADoS.

  31. JordanJ
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 11:29 am | Permalink

    As much as I love the series 8 or 9 seasons would just be too long. Not from a point of holding my attention but from a financial perspective from HBO. They’ve already said that they won’t take anytime off to allow Martin to catch up due to contracts and the ages of the children actors. 7 seasons to me has always seemed to be the goal.
    Season 1 Book 1
    Season 2 Book2
    Season 3 1/2 book 3
    Season 4 1/2 book 3
    Season 5 book 4&5
    Season 6 book 6
    Season 7 book 7.
    They could possibly do 80 episodes. But if they do I think they’ll be spread out in 7 seasons. So far hbo has stuck to 10 episode seasons. But it’s not out of the question that when they hit season 5 they add 2 or 3 more episodes. And the same with seasons 6 & 7. Thus giving us 80 episodes in 7 seasons.
    .

  32. Ours is the Fury
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 11:35 am | Permalink

    Vladimir Bolton,

    It’s really not. Mentioning that unnamed characters will die at some point in season 4 is not a spoiler. It’s Game of Thrones, you can pretty much assume that is going to happen every year.

  33. Dan Spicer
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 11:35 am | Permalink

    With the talk of chess pieces, adding and taking them away, I believe there will be no more “introductions” after Season 4. Four seasons of build up and then four seasons to wind down. If Braavos, Old Town, Dorne, White Harbor, Cold Hands, Stone Heart, Children of the Forest, etc are not introduced in Season Four. We won’t get them.

  34. Teresa
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 11:39 am | Permalink

    The more I ponder the end-game of ASoI&F, the more I believe that “achieving the throne” is not the ultimate goal but rather it is merely surviving the next battle and staying alive. The throne is a curse and whoever sits upon it is doomed. It may even be destroyed at some point during ADoS.

    That’s a good point. Robert, Joffrey, Jaime, Eddard, even Cersei and Tommen all sat on the Iron Throne at one point during the show.

    With the White Walkers, winter, and all the mixed-up vendettas- maybe the real ending is the complete destruction of Westeros and the monarchy as everyone knows it. Like Ragnarok in Norse mythology.

  35. The Butcher's Boy
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 11:42 am | Permalink

    We are left with a few alternatives after the show catches up.
    I will sort them based on how I would prefer them:

    1. We get a prequel season that is based either on Roberts rebellion or Dunk and Egg. Both would provide the needed freedom to D&D to adapt new original scenes and they could add a bit of visual confirmation to a fan theory or two Summerhall and Tower of Joy, I’m looking at you.

    2. They delay the show. This could create some complications which could result in replacing the staff, actors or producers. There could also be a blow to the budget. Still though, prefered to option no:

    3. The show moves ahead of the books. This would bring the biggest ratings to the show, but I mean really? That would suck so much for bookreaders, not to say GRRM and I’d hate the show for it. But I dont think this is likely to happen, HBO hasn’t been a douche so far.

  36. Turncloak
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 11:43 am | Permalink

    Ser Tahu,

    If they stall Bran’s story like that, it would make for bad tv in my opinion

  37. Dan Spicer
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 11:43 am | Permalink

    JordanJ,

    Probably be more like
    Season 1: Book 1
    Season 2: Book 2
    Season 3: Book 3
    Season 4: Book 3, Book 4, Book 5
    Season 5 Book 4, Book 5, Book 6
    Season 6: Book 6, Book 7
    Season 7: Book 7
    I also believe a compromise will be made to get two extra episodes in Season 7 (and maybe also in Season 6) in lieu of an 8th full season. 8 full sesaons is just too big a bill for HBO to swallow. The compromise could also be that HBO allows Season 7 and Season 8 to be filmed at the same time.

  38. ShadowStalker
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 11:48 am | Permalink

    Teresa,

    If you want your mind blown about Ragnorak and ASOIAF… check this out.

    http://gameofthronesandnorsemythology.blogspot.com/2013/05/ragnarok-song-of-ice-fire.html

  39. Nick Larter
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 11:50 am | Permalink

    Ours is the Fury:
    Nick Larter,

    Considering how much time producers spend discussing and planning the money aspects of things, I wouldn’t look at it as an off-the-cuff estimate on his part.

    Normally I would agree with you – but the particular context that the statement was made led me to take a different view – just seemed throwaway and perhaps picking up on the number of books planned by the author rather than anything specifically related to the TV show.

  40. darquemode
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 11:51 am | Permalink

    Haven’t D&D said numerous times in numerous interviews that more than 10 episodes per season are out of the question? I just do not see that happening except for a slight possibility of more episodes in a final season.

    I also sincerely doubt the movie finale or post series movie concept. I know Game of Thrones is a unique entity and much different than Deadwood and Rome, but HBO and wrap-up movies do not have a good track record!!!

  41. Teresa
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 11:55 am | Permalink

    ShadowStalker, I came across that blog by accident and yes, my mind was blown. The blogger’s essays are great reads, but he does make some predictions about the characters and their fates that I really hope Martin and the TV series do not follow. Still, the comparison to Norse mythology is fascinating.

    I think Martin does get Winds of Winter out by 2015. as a nice “preview” for Season 6. But, the TV series will probably end before all the novels are published.

    Oh, and to clarify something in my previous post, although Jaime isn’t shown sitting on the Iron Throne on the TV show, in the books he did after killing Aerys.

  42. the other guy
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 11:56 am | Permalink

    The lovely young woman who doesn’t want to die has to be Rose Leslie or Sibel Kekilli.

    Also, regarding their discussions with GRRM, I hope they’re still planing to stay as close to the book as possible in the future. For example, since the S3 finale, and the various interviews with Michelle Fairley, I’m really concerned that they decided to cut LS. That would be absolutely terrible.

  43. Ser Tahu
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 11:56 am | Permalink

    Turncloak,
    It’s still more interesting than his season 3 stuff :P. And either way, I don’t expect Bran to feature prominently.

    Dan Spicer,
    As long as the show is making money for them, HBO will never turn around and say “Hey, even though you are profitable and you need 2-3 more seasons to finish telling the story you are trying to tell, you are about to hit 7 seasons, so you have one more, make it your last”. It just won’t happen. So my prediction:
    season 1 – book 1
    season 2 – book 2
    season 3 – book 3
    season 4 – book 3 (with very minimal elements from book 4)
    season 5 – book 4, book 5
    season 6 – 70%-80% book 5, 20%-30%* book 6 (possibly with some final elements of book 4 as well)
    season 7 – book 6
    season 8 – book 7
    OR ALTERNATIVELY
    season 7 – book 6
    season 8 – 30%-40% book 6, 60%-70%* book 7
    season 9 – book 7.

    *I mean % of the season, not % of the book.

  44. ShadowStalker
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 11:59 am | Permalink

    Teresa,

    Agreed on the all the predictions… but based on the amount of stuff that correlates between the 2 so far… I would imagine that some of them will.

  45. Omar Brown
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 11:59 am | Permalink

    JordanJ:

    Season 5 book 4&5

    From your words to R’llhors ears!

  46. Juego de Tronos
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 12:02 pm | Permalink

    Very interesting information! I think that will not be enough with 8 seasons.

  47. Hodor's Bastard
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 12:04 pm | Permalink

    ShadowStalker,

    A month or so ago, another thread on this site (I can’t remember, wish we could have a better historical search mechanism at WiC, like a context index since each thread can cover a variety of topics) started a side discussion about the Norse tie-in and that blog. Damn fascinating…lots of folks have great insights to this.

  48. ShadowStalker
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 12:08 pm | Permalink

    I think we are going to get ALOT more of Feast/Dance this season than most people are predicting. We are already about 2/3 of the way thru aSoS.

    Arya (1 1/2 chapters), Bran (0 chapters) & Dany’s (2 Chapters) story arcs are mostly finished. The only things left from that book are Jon and King’s Landing.

    And rather than stall… I think they are going to push forward to make sure we get as much content as possible from the books. Much rather that D&D spend the better part of 3 seasons on the last 2 books. (Given that those 2 books are presumably going to be as large and dense as ASOS.)

  49. ShadowStalker
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 12:09 pm | Permalink

    Hodor’s Bastard,

    Was that conversation continued on WiCgeeks?

  50. I won da GwD pubquiz
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 12:13 pm | Permalink

    So Babar…still feel there isn’t enough good material for eight seasons?

  51. Ron E.
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 12:15 pm | Permalink

    It seems inevitable to me after what we saw with books 4 & 5 that there will be a book 8 and possibly 9. Brevity and editing are just not GRRM’s strong suits. I don’t know how you get 8 or 9 books into 7 TV seasons unless you cut out big chunks (I guess that could actually improve parts of the story however so maybe you do it).

  52. Maxwell James
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 12:21 pm | Permalink

    As someone who can’t stand it when bikers don’t wear their helmets (or put them on improperly), I’m sympathetic to Martin’s irritation. Even though I also find it hilarious.

  53. Boojam
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 12:21 pm | Permalink

    Why have there been an uncountable number of movies and TV show costume dramas set in ancient times and medieval times where people wore helms and the narrative drama did not suffer from it?
    I think of the , sort of recent, TROY.
    Hundreds of others.

  54. Voiceareason
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 12:26 pm | Permalink

    Ser Tahu,

    Unsullied viewers were complaining that S3 was too slow. I can’t even imagine there complaints if we got two seasons where the majority is FfC/DwD. What would be the logical ending points for Season 5? What would Bran do all season? Far too much Mereen! Is Theon going to hang around in Winterfell for two seasons? What would be the episode 9 moment for Season 5, if you have to split it over two seasons? Half the character’s would just be spinning wheels for two whole seasons.

    This just wouldn’t work. The only benefit of this is that it gives George more time, but he still might not finish anyway, and we’ll get an inferior product. The best thing for the show to do is wrap up the majority of the story lines in for Books 4 and 5 in in Season 5, cut as much of the fat as possible (Quentyn, Arys, Aeron etc) , with either the Battle of Mereen or Winterfell at the end, so that the Season has something to build up to.

  55. Korlis
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 12:28 pm | Permalink

    Ser Tahu,

    I think you make a good point about them continuing it as long as it remains profitable, but it’s also worth considering that the longer it runs, the more its own success starts to become a problem. For example, if an actor is contracted for X number of seasons, and the story turns out to need X+1 seasons to be finished, each extra season risks becoming exponentially more expensive when contracts come around for renewal, and there may be a point after which it is no longer profitable to keep renewing everything even though it remains popular.

    That said, it does seem somewhat ambitious/presumptive to believe that books six and seven (which we have no idea about the length of, considering how large books 3 and 5 ended up being) could be finished by the end of season 8, so I do agree that a 9th season wouldn’t be all that surprising – I think either of your predictions could be pretty close to the truth.

    Dan Spicer,

    I think the producers have stated on a few occasions that more than ten episodes in a season is out of the question on a production level, because it just takes so long to script, film, and post-produce a season. Same thing would probably apply to shooting two seasons simultaneously – Benioff said “Another rumor is that we’re shooting both seasons simultaneously, which would be a really efficient way to do things, but you can’t write it” in an EW interview when they were asked about Seasons 3/4.

  56. Blaineo
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 12:28 pm | Permalink

    Turncloak,

    I completely agree. If you take all the key moments from both those books you could definitely squeeze them into one season, with possibly bits flowing over to season 4/6.

    They know where the story is headed though. I’d need to see WoW before really being able to guess, which won’t be for a few years yet. But for now I’d say three seasons for the last two books would be reasonable.

  57. Michael Tschuertz
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 12:29 pm | Permalink

    As long as it makes money and the makers want to go on there will be as many seasons of
    GoT has there has to be.

  58. King DBC
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 12:38 pm | Permalink

    Carice van Houten (Melisandre) posted this on Instagram…
    http://instagram.com/p/bOs92fCzIN/
    It’s the script for episode 401, written by D&D. Oh my god, that made me so excited.

  59. King DBC
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 12:42 pm | Permalink

    Carice van Houten (Melisandre) posted this on Instagram…
    http://instagram.com/p/bOs92fCzIN/
    It’s the script for episode 401, written by D&D. Oh my god, that made me so excited.

  60. House Mormont
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 12:47 pm | Permalink

    I think there’ll be technically 8 seasons but the 8th season will be Season 7 part 2 just like what happened with the Sopranos and Doctor Who because that way they’ll avoid higher costs

    Either way I would prefer an additional season because I hope book 6 and 7 will be more eventful and less filler… and judging by the way people describe how book 5 ended it logically has to atleast start with a good pace

  61. AngryGoTFan
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 1:00 pm | Permalink

    GRRM UNDERSTAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAANDS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  62. Jake Umber
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 1:02 pm | Permalink

    ser pounce,

    He explicitly says 80 episodes. Did you read it?

  63. AngryGoTFan
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 1:03 pm | Permalink

    COME ON D AND D EVEN THE POWER RANGERS WORE HELMETS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  64. GreatJon of Slumber
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 1:07 pm | Permalink

    Ser Tahu,

    Nice way to lay it out. I think you and I disagree *slightly* in that I think most of AFfC and ADwD should end up in Seasons 4-5. To me, I think the strongest, most fertile plots, the ones that will carry the spine of Season 5, will be the Cersei/Margaery/High Sparrow stuff and Jon/Night’s Watch/Stannis.

    And so it’s THOSE two plots that can be accomplished successfully in Season 5, along with the following:

    –Ramsey/Theon. There’s the Winterfell wedding, a lot of Ramsey being a jerkoff, and Theon escaping with whomever they use as “Arya.”
    –Littlefinger/Sansa. All easily handled in this time.
    –Jaime in the Riverlands. (Dump the Bracken blah blah stuff.)
    –Arya training in Braavos.

    Then you need to see what gets moved into Season 6, and therefore you need adequate stopping points for the other characters not mentioned above:

    –Tyrion: Season 5 is the trip down the Rhoyne, his capture by Jorah, and the Stinking Ship, ending with the big storm, and Jorah saying: “It’s a slaver’s ship,” and Moqorro has gone overboard. BOOM. FADE TO BLACK. Season 6 involves their trip to Meereen early in the season.

    –Victarion: We see him sailing for Slaver’s Bay, and picks up Moqorro. They arrive in Slaver’s Bay just after Danys leaves early in Season 6.
    –Danys: Agrees to stay in Meereen in Season 5, after conquering it in Season 4 (which ends with her being brought the burned bones of a child), she agrees to marry Hidzdar. SEASON END THERE. In early Season 6, she has her flight on Drogon/the fighting pits.

    Stuff kept mostly for Season 4:

    –A bit of Arya arriving in Braavos.
    –Most of the relevant Brienne stuff, with enough of a “shock” end at the end of Season 4 that disappears her for most of Season 5.

    That then gives you about 6-7 episodes of Season 6 and all of Seasons 7-8 to handle the last 2 books.

  65. redqueen
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 1:10 pm | Permalink

    ShadowStalker,

    The many, many uses of Norse Mythology are too many to be coincidental. What an amazing blog. I like that the writer does not profess to know if this is how everything will happen but certainly up to this point it is basically following the mythology. If GRRM completes this it will be a masterpiece of all time. Making the series one of the most well written fantasies and bringing the one dimensional characters from the mythology to people we have learned to care about and love and hate. Not just your typical fantasy/bad guy/girl/good guy/girl magic etc.

  66. Jake Umber
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 1:11 pm | Permalink

    I don’t really understand how some of you people are saying they can’t do it in 8 seasons. From our perspective, yeah, it seems like a stretch, but let’s not forget these points:
    1. D&D are writing this show and actually make the decisions.
    2. D&D have the best grasp on what is going to happen in the final 2 books, as GRRM has open discussions with them about them.
    3. D&D know what plotlines and characters are insignificant to the endgame, therefore meaning they know what and who to cut out from future seasons which has major implications for the length of the television show.
    4. A 10 season run for GoT is very long for the child actors. For example, Isaac Hempstead-Wright (Bran) would be 25 years old while filming Season 10.
    5. HBO has never had a show run for more than 8 seasons. Entourage lasted 8, The Sopranos lasted 6. Sure, you could say that they will “keep making it as long as it is making them money”, but that is even more difficult with a production such as GoT where some of the starring actors would need to agree to stay on that long (for example, if Tyrion lives until the end, signing Peter Dinklage for 10 seasons). It will get increasingly more difficult as time goes on to renegotiate contracts and such with the star actors.

    I think ignoring these facts is purely just wishful thinking, and nothing more.

  67. darquemode
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 1:13 pm | Permalink

    Voiceareason,

    Thankfully, D&D are not going to adjust the story to appease the people who have not read the books. They are telling the story of books they love and respect and a lot of that story does take place in Books 4&5.

    People who are waiting Dany to be in Westeros are just not understanding the larger narrative yet. That is act III, endgame material. Not Act II which is what Books 4&5 are.. D&D are not going to rush the endgame of the saga to appease TV viewers who expect something different. They already made that clear by choosing to make 2 seasons from ASOS.

    I am not saying AFFC/ ADWD will be 2 complete seasons (like ASOS will be for the most part), but there is much more than a single season of material in those books. The problem is that there is not necessarily multiple season of climactic finale points. That’s where the adaption comes into play in my opinion. I think that is exactly what D&D meant by not sticking to 1 book = 1 season after Book 3. They will be shifting events forward and back to create their seasons from now on.

    Some events will be moved forward from the end books 4&5 to make solid Season 5 arcs for some characters and other arcs will be fleshed out, tweaked, or created much like Theon’s arc was last year. Then other elements will be pushed back into Season 6 with more climactic elements brought forward from TWOW to make better Season 6 arc finales.

    There may not be one complete book per season anymore, but there will never be 2 complete books per season either.

  68. GreatJon of Slumber
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 1:13 pm | Permalink

    Nick Larter,

    Same here, and also, if I’m going to take one comment more seriously, I’m going to go with D&D’s more emphatic discussion of 8 seasons. I personally think 8 seasons would be the sweet spot. 9 feels a bit too long. 7 maybe a little short.

  69. JoffreyTrueKing
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 1:20 pm | Permalink

    Hodor’s Bastard,

    And the funny thing is that there is evidence for this. I know a lot of people don’t thinkg too much of D&D additions to the show, but Dany’s vision in the HotU is quite a straightforward reveal of what will happend to the throne room in ADoS.

  70. GreatJon of Slumber
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 1:25 pm | Permalink

    King DBC,

    Yes. That IS awesome.

    I agree with Jake Umber, who also said that books IV-V are in a lot of ways “Act II.” When Littlefinger says “Early days, my friend,” in “The Climb,” I think we know what he’s saying.

    Regarding the kids — any of the “they’re gonna look too old” stuff? The producers would be best to just ignore it. Don’t even make it an issue, or think about it. The actors are already so terrific in their roles that to think about re-casting would be ridiculous.

    Sophie Turner isn’t going to get much taller as she’s already 17. Maisie Williams is already 16. Their faces will change, and it won’t be easy to say Arya is 12 or whatever, but who cares. Isaac Hempstead-Wright is getting bigger and bigger, but his height may not be an issue anymore. The exception, perhaps, is Art Parkinson, the one role I could see being recast if he goes all Neville Longbottom on us and shoots up to 6’1″ to where you’re wondering about him protecting Osha instead of the other way around. But I like Art, and wouldn’t want to see that ANYWAY. Hell, I also like the two kids who play Tommen and Myrcella, and so I’d keep them too.

    Also, I’m throwing this out there at least a season (or 2) early, but can we please have Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, aka Simon Adebisi or Mr. Ecko, for Moqorro, please? Thanksverymuchmkay.

  71. berkelberkel
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 1:36 pm | Permalink

    The Butcher’s Boy: 3. The show moves ahead of the books. This would bring the biggest ratings to the show, but I mean really? That would suck so much for bookreaders, not to say GRRM and I’d hate the show for it. But I dont think this is likely to happen, HBO hasn’t been a douche so far.

    I hate to be the one to break this to you, but this is what will happen. HBO’s objective in producing this series is to generate subscriptions. GoT is an extremely valuable brand for them, they are not going to risk that brand by shelving it for a year or two in order to placate a small subset of a small subset of the show’s fanbase, i.e. book readers who prefer the books to finish before the show.

  72. superkick
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 1:51 pm | Permalink

    its also quite possible books 6 and/or 7 could be larger than ASOS and need to be split into 2 seasons as well.

  73. Jake Umber
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 1:56 pm | Permalink

    superkick,

    Yes, anything is possible.
    But what is more likely is that D&D have a solid understanding of what happens in these books, what they need to do to adapt it, and how long it will take.

  74. Dan Spicer
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 1:56 pm | Permalink

    Here is what I think is a realistic statistical analysis of the possiblity of the TV story being wrapped up a given number of seasons.

    Five Seasons: 0.5% or 200:1 against
    Six Seasons: 1.5% or 200:3 against
    Seven Seasons: 50% or Even Money
    Eight Seasons: 45% or 20:9 against
    Nine Seasons: 2.5% or 40:1 against
    Ten Seasons: 0.5% or 200:1 against

  75. BrianAu
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 2:07 pm | Permalink

    I completely agree. The last two books need complete editing over haul. The audience will scream and then leave if Danerys for example takes more than one more season to get back involved in something moving forward.
    Turncloak,

  76. GeekFurious
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 2:14 pm | Permalink

    If they are saying 80 episodes, then I expect they are speaking from authority and not just wishful thinking. They must have talked to HBO about what they need to tell the whole story and HBO must have given them some assurances about having that ability.

  77. OtherAndrew
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 2:27 pm | Permalink

    GeekFurious,

    Not really. They’ve been saying “80″ for a couple years now, it doesn’t reflect anything other than their personal hopes. Networks don’t make promises five years out.

  78. BrianAu
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 2:30 pm | Permalink

    berkelberkel,

    Totally agree! No way in hell will HBO shelve the show to fit Martin’s writing schedule. And quite frankly they would be foolish to do so. How would you know it was only one season? What upset most of us with his writing was not that he took long to get the books out but that he stated that he was basically done and it would be out shortly. Well ahem that was more than 5 years later…

  79. Arthur
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 2:30 pm | Permalink

    I think its still way premature for D&D to say how man seasons. I think the number of seasons would be dependent on how good GRRMs next 2 books are…

    If book 6 and 7 are both as good as book 3, I would imagine D&D drooling to adapt as many book scenes to TV scenes as they have done for book 3.

    I have always thought the GoT series would be 7-9 seasons, if kept to the 10 episode format, depending on how well GRRM last 2 books are.

    It will be truly epic TV once these major POV characters we all grown to love cross paths and start killing each other off and this should not be rushed…

  80. Ed
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 2:31 pm | Permalink

    VERY interesting comment about having to fill extra time in some episodes! I guess now we know where the Drinking Game scene came from now! LOL

  81. Adam Whitehead
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 2:39 pm | Permalink

    I always assumed Doelger’s comment to be a casual off-the-cuff approximation rather than a statement of policy.

    I see it as one of several possibilities. One is that Doelger has been producer on several shows that didn’t got the distance, most notably ROME, and that is making him lowball things. After all, it’s far better to say, “We’re doing seven seasons,” and then do eight than to say, “We’re doing eight,” and then do seven. D&D may simply being more optimistic and are happier to say so publicly. It’s also possible that HBO have said it’ll either be seven or eight depending on what the ratings are like when they get there, and Doelger is taking the cautionary approach and D&D the more optimistic one.

    I know 9 or 10 seasons is a super optimistic thought but i just don’t see how it’s possible to even somewhat accurately adapt the books in only 7 or 8 seasons.

    The key word there is ‘accurately’. If we assume that HBO overtaking GRRM is probable, than the adaptation cannot be accurate as they won’t have a book to adapt after completing TWoW (and that’s assuming TWoW is out in time, which is very achievable but not 100%), and adapting GRRM’s notes and outlines will inevitably be less accurate than adapting the finished text, given GRRM’s high number of of rewrites on each book.

    Personally I think the show is going to become a much looser adaptation of the books after Season 4 (and we may be starting to see that, with new/different storylines being laid down for Theon and Ramsay, Osha and Rickon and Yara and her crew, and Bran’s story being accelerated), which seems to chime with their disagreements with GRRM post-S4.

    I believe that Feast and Dance have enough good, eventful material for 1.5-2 seasons (depending on the storyline, although some will enter TWoW stuff sooner). As for Bran, I believe that season 4 will consist of a lot of invented material. My vague prediction is this:

    You can certainly do that, but the problem with not giving Bran much to do is that the audience risks losing interest in that storyline and makes it more tempting for the actors in that storyline to move onto other projects if they are not getting much material.

    Haven’t D&D said numerous times in numerous interviews that more than 10 episodes per season are out of the question? I just do not see that happening except for a slight possibility of more episodes in a final season.

    Yup, because they need to get a jump on the next season before the current season is completed. So for the final season they have more time because they haven’t got a next season to work on. So if HBO were willing to let filming continue for an extra month or so, they could fit in another 2 episodes. It would mean cramming on post-production, but it’s doable.

    As long as the show is making money for them, HBO will never turn around and say “Hey, even though you are profitable and you need 2-3 more seasons to finish telling the story you are trying to tell, you are about to hit 7 seasons, so you have one more, make it your last”. It just won’t happen. So my prediction:

    It’s a question of how much money and whether the percentages of profit are going up or down. If there’s a contract renegotiation and HBO’s profits are slashed in half by having to raise salaries by three or four times, HBO might decide not to proceed in favour of a newer show which they might be banking on to be bigger than GoT. Sure, having a completed show is more attractive because people who’ve been waiting for it to be over will go out and buy the whole thing, but that’s not decisive in itself (otherwise, for example, Showtime would have made the fourth and final season of THE BORGIAS rather than leaving the story unfinished).

    We get a prequel season that is based either on Roberts rebellion or Dunk and Egg.

    Not going to happen. They don’t have the rights to Robert’s Rebellion (and GRRM doesn’t sound inclined to make it) and they have specifically ruled out using D&E as a prequel season/movie to delay things.

    The show moves ahead of the books. This would bring the biggest ratings to the show, but I mean really? That would suck so much for bookreaders, not to say GRRM and I’d hate the show for it. But I dont think this is likely to happen, HBO hasn’t been a douche so far.

    Book readers make up a small and shrinking minority of the TV viewers. HBO is not going to go out of its way to accomodate them. GRRM, sure, as they’re working with him and he’s proposing some new projects to them and so on, but even so there are fairly tight limits to how far they are going to go out on a limb for him. Delaying entire seasons, making prequel seasons etc are just not going to fly.

  82. Arthur
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 2:45 pm | Permalink

    Off Topic:

    I watched Showtime’s Ray Donovan series premier last night. It was good, it seemed to me kind of like Tony Soprano crossed with that movie Michael Clayton. It was decent and it got me to thinking wow, HBO has Showtime on their heels…

    IMO HBO needs to get rid of all these half hour comedies (that hardly anyone watches) and create another full fledged 60min per episode drama. Showtime right now is running Ray Donovan (The Michael Clayton Soprano) and Dexter. And HBO is running True Blood and Family Tree or something. Looking at that lineup I picked Showtime. I know Newsroom is coming soon and I enjoy that but HBO needs to add some serious dramas to their summer lineup… Homeland is coming out soon. HBO needs to get to work…..

  83. Lex
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 2:50 pm | Permalink

    Arthur:
    IMO HBO needs to get rid of all these half hour comedies (that hardly anyone watches)

    No way! I don’t know what the ratings are, but Veep, Girls, Curb, etc. are so good. And they add variety to HBO’s schedule.

  84. Adam Whitehead
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 2:51 pm | Permalink

    Arthur:
    IMO HBO needs to get rid of all these half hour comedies (that hardly anyone watches) and create another full fledged 60min per episode drama.Showtime right now is running Ray Donovan (The Michael Clayton Soprano) and Dexter.And HBO is running True Blood and Family Tree or something.Looking at that lineup I picked Showtime.I know Newsroom is coming soon and I enjoy that but HBO needs to add some serious dramas to their summer lineup…Homeland is coming out soon.HBO needs to get to work…..

    I want to know what’s going on with AMERICAN GODS and I, CLAUDIUS. It’s been suggested that HBO are waiting to finally cancel TRUE BLOOD and/or BOARDWALK before proceeding with them, but it might make more sense to drop them in early and make a more compelling line-up with them.

    They also seem to have passed on DARK TOWER, though given the scope of that material I can seem that actually putting it on the backburner as a potential replacement for GoT when it does (eventually) finish, and if it hasn’t been picked up elsewhere.

  85. Arthur
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 2:56 pm | Permalink

    Lex,

    Okay, maybe not “get rid” of them… I also do watch Girls. But move them up in the timeslot or something? I am just saying Showtime has 2 back to back 60min serious dramas and right now HBO has none (you can’t count True Blood as a drama, its like a soap opera with supernatural beings).

    Last night is the first time in a longtime I have chose to watch Showtime instead of HBO because of this.

  86. GreatJon of Slumber
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 3:14 pm | Permalink

    I watched 1/2 of Ray Donovan. It’s ok. It’s no great shakes.

  87. Beth
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 3:16 pm | Permalink

    I dont understand how any estimation could be made with the last 2 books still unwritten.

  88. Jake Umber
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 3:30 pm | Permalink

    Beth,

    Because they know what is going to happen. If the book is a million pages long, it won’t change the major events that D&D already know will occur. They will just not include things they don’t have to.

  89. WildSeed
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 3:48 pm | Permalink

    Maxwell James:
    As someone who can’t stand it when bikers don’t wear their helmets (or put them on improperly), I’m sympathetic to Martin’s irritation. Even though I also find it hilarious.

    Quite so, hilarity even though he understands better than anyone ( because of his
    previous work with network television ), that lead actors must be recognized during
    a scene. He’s clearly having a ” moment “, and daydreaming about his books.

    I suppose it’s possible that each lead actor involved in a battle scene could lift off
    their helmet, as Loras did in the KL scene, as the camera zooms in for a close up…….
    but very single time ? Hmmm……… possible maybe.

  90. Arthur
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 3:50 pm | Permalink

    Jake Umber,

    All D&D know is the broadstroke undetailed character storyline endings. They have no idea of the details or how a character gets from point A to point B. GRRM himself says he doesn’t know but has an idea of where he wants things to go, and he shared all these ideas with D&D.

    So yes they know what is going to happen in a broad sense but not a detailed one. If books 6 and 7 are as good as book 3, I can see D&D going past 8 TV seasons. But honestly it’s all up to D&D and the quality of the next 2 books.

    D&D are well aware that this GoT series will be their stamp on television forever and I know they are intelligent enough to weigh in on the pros and cons of having the series last 7 seasons or even 10 seasons.

    This all being said, the possible length of this series will ultimately be determined by the quality of the next 2 books. Then by D&D weighing the pros and cons of X amount of seasons…

  91. WildSeed
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 3:56 pm | Permalink

    Arthur,

    I’ve been waiting for that ” Ray Donovan ” series to start, seems I missed it .
    Glad to know it’s worth the wait.

    HBO indeed needs the comedy and/or variety to it’s production list. I enjoy
    ” VEEP “, but wouldn’t strain my eyes to watch ” Girls ” again. ” Curb Your
    Enthusiasm ” needs to be put to rest .

  92. WinterRose
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 3:56 pm | Permalink

    DEADLINE: What arcs in the last season made you most proud?
    BENIOFF: I’d say the Theon Greyjoy for both of us has been really something …

    Seriously?

  93. mariamb
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 4:00 pm | Permalink

    WinterRose,

    That was my reaction their comment as well.

  94. MUGger
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 4:03 pm | Permalink

    bon,

    I think my choice will pre-decease yours — but you could be right.

  95. spacechampion
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 4:04 pm | Permalink

    I wouldn’t be surprised if part of Arya’s storyline from Clash of Kings that D&D skipped in season 2 will get added to season 4. Namely, a return to Harrenhal for some Weasel Soup, with the BWB taking the place of the Glover men. Then the Hound and Arya flee Harrenhal for the Eyrie, stop off at the Crossroads Inn to and see Polliver, Dunsen, etc. From there, back on track with Storm of Swords.

    For Bran, I can see them meeting Mother Mole so we get some insight into what’s going on at Hardhome before reaching the 3 Eyed Crow.

  96. jkb
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 4:04 pm | Permalink

    Hodor’s Bastard,

    yup, i’m actually expecting (and hoping) that entire KL will be destroyed to ashes.

  97. bon
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 4:05 pm | Permalink

    Look at Battlestar Galactica series. They ended it in 73 episodes, but with monstrous seasons of 20 episodes!!! I think taht 80 episodes are possible to do.

  98. Arthur
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 4:06 pm | Permalink

    WildSeed,

    It’s good, I don’t know if you ever seen the Michael Clayton movie. But it’s kind of like that “fix things for millionaires” guy gets merged with a Tony Soprano guy. They aren’t Italian or have anything to do with the mob but he has a very disfunctional family that’s very crime orientated.

    As far as HBO 30min comedy series… I think they should move them up to the 8pm timeslot. Play them back to back (Veep and Family Tree or whatever) but save the 9pm and 10pm timeslot for their more series 1 hour dramas.

    Like I said, IMO showtime has the better Sunday night lineup right now because all HBO has is a bunch of tongue and cheek comedies (I do think True Blood is a comedy).

  99. WildSeed
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 4:07 pm | Permalink

    darquemode,

    This makes sense, with respect to the single book per season. I’ve had to adapt
    to a number of changes to the manner that ASOIAF is presented. Yet I appreciate
    Benioff & Weiss’s adaptation for what it is, especially since they respect ASOIAF’s
    context, and the GRRM’s intent. The mixed book chapters leave me guessing as well,
    but that’s okay, if there’s a pragmatic approach to streaming events, or foreshadow
    upcoming scenarios. Still, it’s gotta make sense at the end of each season.

  100. darquemode
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 4:11 pm | Permalink

    WinterRose,

    My reaction as well! XD

    Although I do find a bit of a silver lining to them thinking that the worst seasonal arc of the series is their favorite. It means they do not pay that much attention to fans because reaction was very mixed (at best) about Theon’s arc.

    I like showrunners that stick to their vision and their interpretation/ adaptation of the source material they love. Even if I do not always agree with their choice is it 100% better than showrunners that look to fans for reactions and cater the show as public opinion goes!

  101. WildSeed
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 4:11 pm | Permalink

    Arthur,

    True Blood is soft porn, there’s no denying the appreciative fans for that.

    The movie ” Michael Clayton ” is worth renting. Actress Tilda Swinton and
    the script is worth observation.

  102. Hodor's Bastard
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 4:13 pm | Permalink

    jkb:
    Hodor’s Bastard,

    yup, i’m actually expecting (and hoping) that entire KL will be destroyed to ashes.

    Maybe it will be like “art imitating reality.” As we are seeing with the Arab Spring in the Middle East (and many other countries, including the US), occupying the leadership position, regardless of ideology, does not invite respect; it only makes the new throne-sitter a target. Seven kingdoms in Westeros will never unite again….(imho)…..peaceably.

  103. WildSeed
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 4:15 pm | Permalink

    GreatJon of Slumber: Also, I’m throwing this out there at least a season (or 2) early, but can we please have Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, aka Simon Adebisi or Mr. Ecko, for Moqorro, please? Thanksverymuchmkay.

    I support these actors as strong contenders . I’ll also throw in actor Edris Elba’s hat
    in the ring, for the role of Aeroh Hotah .

  104. Arthur
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 4:18 pm | Permalink

    WildSeed,

    Well I honestly believe the Michael Clayton movie is what seeded the idea for this Ray Donovan series. And to make things more interesting they threw in some complex family dynamics with a tough Tony Soprano type lead character.

    Showtime’s lineup is gaining strength every year and besides GoT all HBO has been doing is adding 30min comedies. I’m just saying I hope HBO has some fresh new drama coming out soon.

  105. Martinfan
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 4:19 pm | Permalink

    8 seasons only??

    1 for book 1
    1 for book 2
    2 for book 3
    2 for book 4
    2 for book 5
    2 for book 6
    2 for book 7

    This show needs AT LEAST 12 seasons. Every book needs 2 seasons cause off the deeper storyline and all the characters.

  106. Hodor's Bastard
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 4:22 pm | Permalink

    WinterRose,

    Personally, I enjoy how D&D are taking non-POV stuff from the books and making it their own. I can see how they would be proud of their deviations and “clarifications” (Jeyne W was never pregnant!…hence Talisa gets it in the gut at the RW). Fans are even encouraging opportunities to expose more non-POV events in GoT.

  107. berkelberkel
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 4:30 pm | Permalink

    Martinfan,

    You’re trolling. 4 years of AFfC and ADwD is bananas.

  108. Martinfan
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 4:31 pm | Permalink

    berkelberkel,

    No I actually think they are very good books, just like all the others!

  109. KingNed
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 4:34 pm | Permalink

    The only way for the show to do justice to the book series is by having 10 seasons. These books are Huge and some of the events in book 4 are not popular but they ARE part of the story,they should be filmed and some fans actually like them. And the final two books are set to be enormous with lots of explosive stuff going on.Easily enough material for ten seasons

  110. KingNed
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 4:36 pm | Permalink

    The only way for the show to do justice to the book series is by having 10 seasons. These books are huge and some of the events in book 4 are not popular but are part of the story,they should be filmed and some fans actually like them. And the final two books are set to be enormous with lots of explosive stuff going on.Easily enough material for ten seasons

  111. Andrew
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 4:40 pm | Permalink

    I think that David Benioff should play some character in the coming seasons :).

  112. Pau Soriano
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 4:50 pm | Permalink

    WinterRose:
    DEADLINE: What arcs in the last season made you most proud?
    BENIOFF: I’d say the Theon Greyjoy for both of us has been really something …

    Seriously?

    He’s trolling the viewers. They do that a lot and I approve

  113. El Beto
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 4:51 pm | Permalink

    The problem is not the number of seasons, the problem is that they are going to catch up the books

  114. ShadowStalker
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 4:52 pm | Permalink

    KingNed,

    It isn’t that there isn’t material for 10 seasons… it is logistical. Production costs (Actor Salaries), Logistics of having actors who are supposed to be children being in their mid 20′s by the end of the series. Also losing fans for getting bogged down in some areas.

    You need to keep the show moving forward (Which Feast and Dance don’t do a whole lot of). And just because a bunch of us enjoyed Feast/Dance material doesn’t mean that it translates well. 2 different mediums.

  115. berkelberkel
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 4:52 pm | Permalink

    Martinfan: No I actually think they are very good books, just like all the others!

    I think what makes aSoS unique of the books so far is that it is both long and full of significant events, whereas AFfC and ADwD are long, but not nearly as event-dense. Half of either would not make for a very rewarding viewing experience, particularly for non-readers. If I’ll entertain the idea of 2 seasons each for AFfC and ADwD, could you tell me what are the “episode 9″ moments of each of these seasons? My guess is they will be streamlined into a single season (5) with some material bleeding over into seasons 4 & 6.

  116. Summer Is Coming
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 4:57 pm | Permalink

    I said it before but I also see the saga as 8 seasons. With ASoS being the one split into 2 seasons. But if TWoW and ADoS turn out to be as consistent as ASoS then who knows. 9 seasons is a possibility.

  117. Pau Soriano
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 4:58 pm | Permalink

    redqueen:
    ShadowStalker,

    The many, many uses of Norse Mythology are too many to be coincidental.What an amazing blog.I like that the writer does not profess to know if this is how everything will happen but certainly up to this point it is basically following the mythology.

    It’s very easy to make the pieces fit after the books are written ;)

    I find the reasoning in that blog awfully constructed to be honest. I guess those who like conspiracy theories will love it though

  118. Jake Umber
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 5:05 pm | Permalink

    KingNed,

    0% chance. Sorry dude.

  119. redqueen
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 5:07 pm | Permalink

    Pau Soriano,

    Not many have though, most still want to see Dany and Jon get married and save the day!!!!

  120. ShadowStalker
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 6:05 pm | Permalink

    redqueen,

    Alot of the conclusions feel very Martin esque as well. Taking the typical Fantasy cliches and turning them on their head.

    I mean if Jon, Tyrion and Dany turn out to actually fighting on the “evil” side… how awesomely screwed up would that be. And it also makes alot of sense that this is at least a template for the books. Because I mean how do you go about writing something like this without some sort of in depth plot setup without having a ton of inconsistencies. GRRM has said that he is not an architect (when referring to the type of writer he is)… So it just sort of fits… You can not like it… but I think the evidence is at least compelling and it should be seen at least as plausible.

  121. sherry
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 6:34 pm | Permalink

    I think 9 seasons would need to be done to do the complete story to satisfaction. And, I believe interest would not wan one bit if the show continued that long.

  122. Ross
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 7:08 pm | Permalink

    It does sound as though Benioff and Weiss have had some significant disagreements with GRRM about the appearance of future characters – my subtext reading of that is that the iron island characters are gone. No bad thing for the tv show in my opinion.

  123. The Lightning Lord
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 7:15 pm | Permalink

    Ours is the Fury,

    Estimates change. They’ve always been looking at eight seasons, but the massive and unexpected success of the show has cemented that possibility, especially after the third season. I would not be amiss if I were to say that it is indeed the most popular TV show right now, and it’s eclipsed Dexter, True Blood, Breaking Bad in terms of popularity and it’s even getting more media coverage than Mad Men. How many people line up and crowd pubs and bars just to get a glimpse of the show?

  124. Dorian
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 7:40 pm | Permalink

    The need for people to recognise actors is such a bogus reason to deprive them of helmets.

    1. The Stark helmets are open-faced. Robb Stark actually has a helmet- its on the stand where his armor is kept in his tent in Season2 .

    2. The Baratheon (both of Dragonstone and Storm’s End) and Tyrell helmets are both open faced.

    3. The Lannister helmets open up.

    4. The Greyjoy helmets are open faced.

    There is no way you wouldn’t recognise the actors wearing the show helmets in battle scenes. The real reason is probably that they think the actors don’t look as “photogenic” with the helmets on.

  125. WinterRose
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 8:01 pm | Permalink

    Pau Soriano: He’s trolling the viewers. They do that a lot and I approve

    I like to see it that way as well.

  126. monsieurxander
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 8:10 pm | Permalink

    Dorian,

    Have you seen Band of Brothers? Great series, but its biggest flaw is that their (open-faced) helmets make it hard to differentiate characters. You’d be surprised how much hair color/type and even head shape help recognition.

  127. FictionIsntReal
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 8:42 pm | Permalink

    “they have specifically ruled out using D&E as a prequel season/movie to delay things”
    I hadn’t heard that. I know HBO has bought the rights to them and was in plans to film them at some point. Someone raised the possibility of them filming the remaining seasons before the final books are released, so as to ensure the actors are the right age and they don’t exceed their contracted number of years, but then not airing them until the books come out. HBO wouldn’t want to do that and leave a giant gap, but if they had some material to air in between a lot of fans would watch that.

  128. sunspear
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 8:54 pm | Permalink

    Arthur,

    I saw the pilot on youtube and thought it was pretty mediocre to be honest. But more to the point, HBO has the Newsroom coming up in two weeks, so there’s your extra drama hour.

    And Showtime’s roster has been gaining over the past year? Really?

  129. Dorian
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 9:28 pm | Permalink

    monsieurxander:
    Dorian,

    Have you seen Band of Brothers? Great series, but its biggest flaw is that their (open-faced) helmets make it hard to differentiate characters. You’d be surprised how much hair color/type and even head shape help recognition.

    I have – I don’t really remember that being a problem, but its telling that Band of Brothers wouldn’t compromise with that sort of thing, because they know the viewers would rebel at all these guys going into battle without helmets.

    I don’t think it’d be as much of a problem in Game of Thrones – if you take every shot of Stannis in Blackwater for example, do you really think the audience wouldn’t know who he is? His armor is distinctive, and in the Histories and Lore video narrated by Stannis about the Greyjoy Rebellion, we see a drawing of him with a Barahteon-style open helmet, complete with large antlers. They could’ve done that.

  130. maia
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 9:32 pm | Permalink

    “George is not a naïve dude; he’s spent his time in the Hollywood trenches, and he’s had enough people talking bullshit to him. He had offers way before we came around because after Lord of the Rings, people were looking for the next fantasy franchise. He kept saying no because everyone he talked to, he felt they read only the coverage. And those who said they’d cracked it into a two-hour movie would tell Jon Snow’s story or it would be Daenerys’ story and you lose all those other interesting characters. We said, “We want to tell the whole story — as much of it as we possibly can in 10 hours a season.” But that also means there are going to be changes, and we’ve definitely had disagreements; every season we have disagreements about certain things.”

    there’s a spoiler right there…..it’s all about Jon and Daenerys….

  131. redqueen
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 10:29 pm | Permalink

    ShadowStalker,

    Certainly agree, much more than plausible and as you say seems to fit GRRM’s sensibilities from what I’ve read about his favorite writings etc. <b>And with a Ragnarok ending there would be no fan fiction.

  132. WildSeed
    Posted July 1, 2013 at 11:50 pm | Permalink

    Since we’re not likely to see Myrcella this upcoming season, it’s
    probably too soon to begin throwing hats in the ring for Arys Oakheart
    or is it ?

  133. Varamyr 4 skins
    Posted July 2, 2013 at 12:03 am | Permalink

    Does anyone else get tired of listening to people go on and on and contemplate what % of the book is going to be in how much of this season and stuff. Can’t we just relax and enjoy the show and let it happen. Their doing a great job with the show as is yet ppl still think somewhere along the line all the sudden their just gonna sh1t the bed and stop making good episodes. It’s a brilliant series and has brilliant people working on the shows can we ever jus for 5 seconds trust the ppl who r not only show runners but also huge fans of the books to adapt this great series

  134. Ser Tahu
    Posted July 2, 2013 at 12:22 am | Permalink

    Varamyr 4 skins,
    No, because speculation is fun.

  135. Chickenduck
    Posted July 2, 2013 at 1:12 am | Permalink

    Varamyr 4 skins:
    Does anyone else get tired of listening to people go on and on and contemplate what % of the book is going to be in how much of this season and stuff.

    No.

    As Ser Tahu said, speculation is fun.

    I trust D&D to make something cool, but I still enjoy talking about how we’d do it as fans.

  136. Arthur
    Posted July 2, 2013 at 1:31 am | Permalink

    I love the show.

    D&D have delivered for me 95% of the time.

    I think I have been spoiled by HBO’s D&D ran GoT series and now I flick the channels around looking for something to fill that void.

    True Blood is entertaining, it’s a rated r, sexy and supernatural sitcom but is far from an epic GoT series.

    Showtime has some interesting dramas but again, not comparable to GoT.

    Why can’t HBO get the ball rolling on another epic and have 4 epics (one for each season) back to back?

    They currently have:

    Game of Thrones
    True Blood
    Boardwalk Empire
    Newsroom

    That’s it right? I know they have a bunch of 30min episodes for series like Girls, Veep, Family Tree and that’s fine for diversity but come on where are the epics?

    Why can’t there be a GoT type production for four series a year, one for each season? Are D&D the only producers around that can handle and deliver that for HBO? Surely there are other epic sagas and/or book novels out there that can be converted to a TV series. Surely D&D aren’t the only ones that can manage and produce an epic TV series out of these books…

    Why do I have to wait a whole year to see an epic? HBO should have them on rotation… I’m only picking on HBO because they are the only cable TV company that has proven itself capable of delivering epics. By now you would think they have mastered this process and could have them on rotation…

  137. LordDavos12
    Posted July 2, 2013 at 3:03 am | Permalink

    Arthur,

    “Why can’t there be a GoT type production for four series a year, one for each season? ”

    That could cost a shit ton, and I doubt HBO wants to gamble on unknown properties just to fill a quota for “epic.” I loved Deadwood; it’s production and writing were unmatched in my eyes, but apparently it wasn’t making enough money for HBO. It’s all about the money dude.

  138. Adam Whitehead
    Posted July 2, 2013 at 5:48 am | Permalink

    “they have specifically ruled out using D&E as a prequel season/movie to delay things”

    I hadn’t heard that. I know HBO has bought the rights to them and was in plans to film them at some point. Someone raised the possibility of them filming the remaining seasons before the final books are released, so as to ensure the actors are the right age and they don’t exceed their contracted number of years, but then not airing them until the books come out. HBO wouldn’t want to do that and leave a giant gap, but if they had some material to air in between a lot of fans would watch that.

    HBO has talked DUNK AND EGG with GRRM, but they have not yet bought the rights.

    As for Benioff and Weiss ruling out delaying GoT for anything, it’s here:

    http://thewertzone.blogspot.co.uk/2013/03/got-producers-will-not-wait-for-grrm-to.html

    “we’re not going to take a two-year hiatus (to wait for a book). The little kids are growing older, the show’s got momentum now, and the show must go on”

  139. Jentario
    Posted July 2, 2013 at 7:10 am | Permalink

    Voiceareason:
    Ser Tahu,

    Unsullied viewers were complaining that S3 was too slow. I can’t even imagine there complaints if we gottwo seasons where the majority is FfC/DwD. What would be the logical ending points for Season 5? What would Bran do all season? Far too much Mereen! Is Theon going to hang around in Winterfell for two seasons? What would be the episode 9 moment for Season 5, if you have to split it over two seasons? Half the character’s would just be spinning wheels for two whole seasons.

    This just wouldn’t work. The only benefit of this is that it gives George more time, but he still might not finish anyway, and we’ll get an inferior product. The best thing for the show to do is wrap up the majority of the story lines in for Books 4 and 5 in in Season 5, cut as much of the fat as possible (Quentyn, Arys, Aeron etc) ,with either the Battle of Mereen or Winterfell at the end, so that the Season has something to build up to.

    My proposition for an episode 9 moment would be a deviation from the books: an expanded version of the Battle of Hardhome, a full on battle against Others (White Walkers) and wights in which Jon and the NW will try to save the wildlings, but will end up only saving a small portion of them (a portion which includes Tormund and his people). That would not only satiate the need for an episode 9 moment, but it would also remind viewers of the real threat and would be a segue to Jon’s season 6 arc- welcoming the wildlings beyond the Wall against the wishes of his men and (eventually) getting backstabbed (literally) for it.

    Also, the season would include pretty much all of Feast, which actually had climaxes for most of its characters (even though it was a slow book), so it won’t feel as much like a half-season. Season 6 would then take a chunk out of TWOW (something around a quarter) to fill up the story.

    It’s also as good a time as any to begin deviating (as in, adding and removing scenes and plot lines) to adjust the monstrosity which is ADWD and AFFC. Characters will be cut, hopefully not many (though cutting Aeron Greyjoy and Areo Hotah or replacing them with extras actually seems likely and good at that).

  140. Pau Soriano
    Posted July 2, 2013 at 7:45 am | Permalink

    Dan Spicer:
    Here is what I think is a realistic statistical analysis of the possiblity of the TV story being wrapped up a given number of seasons.

    Five Seasons: 0.5%or 200:1 against
    Six Seasons: 1.5% or 200:3 against
    Seven Seasons: 50%or Even Money
    Eight Seasons: 45%or 20:9 against
    Nine Seasons: 2.5%or 40:1 against
    Ten Seasons: 0.5% or 200:1 against

    How is “making numbers up” a “realistic statistical analysis“? :P

    PS: You’re also confusing statistics (study of the collection, organization, analysis, interpretation and presentation of data. you have no data there to analyze and extract your results from) with probabilistic forecasting

  141. Dan Spicer
    Posted July 2, 2013 at 10:41 am | Permalink

    Pau Soriano,

    OK, Fair enough. I am laying odds. I will gladly lay someone 40:1 on whether or not there are 9 seasons. You want some action? The window is open.

  142. Pau Soriano
    Posted July 2, 2013 at 11:14 am | Permalink

    Dan Spicer:
    Pau Soriano,

    OK, Fair enough.I am laying odds.I will gladly lay someone 40:1 on whether or not there are 9 seasons.You want some action?The window is open.

    Wow I’m totally up for it!! 50$?

  143. Hodor's Bastard
    Posted July 2, 2013 at 12:52 pm | Permalink

    Dan Spicer,

    I’ll take that bet but I’m still in for 8. What I would really like to bet on is the month that TWoW will arrive! 20-1 that it will be Nov 2014!

  144. DH87
    Posted July 2, 2013 at 2:39 pm | Permalink

    Ser Tahu,

    For anyone’s information, as I predicted, True Blood’s ratings continue to erode, week by week, in its Season 6—falling below 4 million per episode for the first time last Sunday (3.93 million first-view viewers) despite no competition from live sporting events—a cautionary tale for anyone willing to learn. Don’t stray from the original material, don’t marginalize popular characters, don’t overlay your own “creative” agenda on the adaptation, don’t think you know what viewers “want” when the blogosphere tells you differently……

  145. GeekFurious
    Posted July 2, 2013 at 3:15 pm | Permalink

    Dan Spicer:
    Pau Soriano,

    OK, Fair enough.I am laying odds.I will gladly lay someone 40:1 on whether or not there are 9 seasons.You want some action?The window is open.

    $500!

  146. Hodor's Bastard
    Posted July 2, 2013 at 3:18 pm | Permalink

    DH87,

    …or the reason could be that vampires have had their resuscitation moment in the public eye and the zeitgeist has moved on.

  147. GeekFurious
    Posted July 2, 2013 at 3:50 pm | Permalink

    maia:
    “George is not a naïve dude; he’s spent his time in the Hollywood trenches, and he’s had enough people talking bullshit to him. He had offers way before we came around because after Lord of the Rings, people were looking for the next fantasy franchise. He kept saying no because everyone he talked to, he felt they read only the coverage. And those who said they’d cracked it into a two-hour movie would tell Jon Snow’s story or it would be Daenerys’ story and you lose all those other interesting characters. We said, “We want to tell the whole story — as much of it as we possibly can in 10 hours a season.” But that also means there are going to be changes, and we’ve definitely had disagreements; every season we have disagreements about certain things.”

    there’s a spoiler right there…..it’s all about Jon and Daenerys….

    They are pointing out that ignorant studio types thought it was all about Jon and Daenerys.

  148. sunspear
    Posted July 2, 2013 at 4:00 pm | Permalink

    DH87:
    Ser Tahu,

    For anyone’s information, as I predicted, True Blood’s ratings continue to erode, week by week, in its Season 6—falling below 4 million per episode for the first time last Sunday (3.93 million first-view viewers) despite no competition from live sporting events—a cautionary tale for anyone willing to learn.

    It went up against the BET awards, and the premeire of Dexter. Last week it went up against Skywire live. I wouldn’t pronounce the show dead just yet.

  149. DH87
    Posted July 2, 2013 at 4:08 pm | Permalink

    Hodor’s Bastard: DH87,

    …or the reason could be that vampires have had their resuscitation moment in the public eye and the zeitgeist has moved on.

    Well, the “zeitgeist” must have moved on pretty quickly—between May 6, when the final book in the series upon which True Blood is based debuted at #1 on the New York Times, Publishers Weekly, and USA Today bestseller lists and June 16, when True Blood debuted at 4.5 million first-view viewers, down from the season premiere episode of 2012 (and dropping every ep since).

  150. DH87
    Posted July 2, 2013 at 4:21 pm | Permalink

    sunspear: It went up against the BET awards, and the premeire of Dexter. Last week it went up against Skywire live. I wouldn’t pronounce the show dead just yet.

    TB has always had competition (although nothing anywhere near as daunting as poor Boardwalk Empire’s hopeless battle against Sunday Night Football for its entire season); this year, it’s just not “Must See TV” (to borrow a broadcast tagline) at 9 PM.

    TB remains relatively cheap to produce, and, if it’s any comfort to its remaining fans, sliding ratings might keep the key players from asking for big raises when their 7-year contracts end next year, assuming the show is still around for a Season 8. (By then, half of the cast will need botox to look between 26-30 years of age.)

  151. Zack
    Posted July 2, 2013 at 5:43 pm | Permalink

    I predict a public spat between GRRM and DS&B in two years or so. Few weeks back, GRRM said that the show will not overtake the books “If they include everything in the books.” As D&B’s deadbolt interview confirmed, D&B will (naturally) cut a lot of stuff from FFC and DWD, and theyhave already informed GRRM of this.

    In two years when it will be clear to absolutely everyone that WOW will not be released in time to keep ahead of the show, expect GRRM to blame D&D.

  152. Clob
    Posted July 2, 2013 at 6:00 pm | Permalink

    HBO has quite a few future programs in the works. Some are further along than others of course. Unfortunately the ones I’m most interested in aren’t close and may never end up being. I eventually always catch up on True Blood when I force myself, no matter how difficult, but if they “have” to cut it to get something fresh and less cheesy on I’m fine with it. It really is all played out for me.

    The Leftovers is supposedly starting next year. That one could be interesting. I’d really like American Gods and The Dark Tower to move forward though.

    GoT remains relatively unique from anything on HBO’s reported programming possibilities, so as long as they have material and it remains popular…

  153. WildSeed
    Posted July 2, 2013 at 6:25 pm | Permalink

    sunspear: It went up against the BET awards, and the premeire of Dexter. Last week it went up against Skywire live. I wouldn’t pronounce the show dead just yet.

    I believe interest in the show is eroding, not that it’s dead altogether. It would be
    more interesting to see how the ratings compare to ” Breaking Bad’s” final season,
    come August. I totally forgot about ” Dexter ” resuming.

  154. DH87
    Posted July 2, 2013 at 10:08 pm | Permalink

    Zack: I predict a public spat between GRRM and DS&B in two years or so.

    I would agree l00 percent if GRRM were not a TV veteran of decades who knows full well what side his bread is buttered on. Any kind of internal spat ends up looking childish and unprofessional if it makes its way into public media discourse (exs.: the Two and One Half Men and Community dust-ups involving showrunners/stars/management). HBO wouldn’t need the hassle: friction between GRRM and D&D could potentially end the show seasons early. Remember, HBO has contracted with D&D, not GRRM.

  155. DH87
    Posted July 2, 2013 at 10:16 pm | Permalink

    Clob: GoT remains relatively unique from anything on HBO’s reported programming possibilities, so as long as they have material and it remains popular…

    Yes, but The White Queen on Starz, starting next month, is the War of the Roses. Outlander (Starz 2014) is 18th century Scotland/fantasy. Who knows how many more medieval English/European history sagas will clog the premium channel airways in the next three years? Medieval fatigue could set in.

  156. Hodor's Bastard
    Posted July 2, 2013 at 10:24 pm | Permalink

    DH87,

    Vampires have had a good run over the past decade. TB still has its core audience but the # of casual viewers is receding, which is usually an indication of sub-standard “tired” writing (as you mentioned) or the general audience has moved on to another topic. The public is a fickle beast, indeed.

  157. Ser Tahu
    Posted July 3, 2013 at 12:00 am | Permalink

    DH87,
    I find True Blood’s ratings to be completely weird, given that the first three seasons were absolutely dreadful and the ratings rose, yet season 5 was actually good and the ratings fell… But then again, True Blood did change its focus a bit from season 4 onwards, so I can understand it from that perspective.

    As for Game of Thrones, it will never change its focus the way True Blood did, so I believe that even if there is a decline, it won’t be as severe and the ratings will still be relatively strong until the end.

  158. Jaison Biagini
    Posted July 3, 2013 at 12:43 pm | Permalink

    i have a hard time seeing this being wrapped in 8 seasons without really cutting a ton of stuff. dance with dragons is as long and packed as SOS’s. i would thing combing DWD’s & AFFC’s would take 3 seasons. supposedly winds of winter is a very long packed book too. i’m guessing it will be the same for the final book. i honestly think it will take 10 seasons.

  159. Ol Dirty Baratheon
    Posted July 3, 2013 at 1:47 pm | Permalink

    DH87,

    It’s actually a cautionary tail that when you base TV show off bad novels it only works if someone like Alan Ball is involved. The first three seasons of Trueblood were great because the show was aware of how bad it was.

  160. Arthur
    Posted July 3, 2013 at 2:18 pm | Permalink

    Noone knows how many seasons GoT will be, not even D&D until the last two books come out.

    That being said, I’d say D&D saying 80 hours (eight seasons) is a great estimation. It doesn’t bind them and HBO isn’t going to say “But you said eight!” If D&D decide to do more.

    It all comes down to the quality of the next two books and D&D doing a detailed analysis on the pros and cons of having X amount of seasons.

    I can guarantee you D&D are in it to win it and will not rush the series to end if they see great TV adaptation potential in these last two books…

  161. Adam Whitehead
    Posted July 3, 2013 at 4:16 pm | Permalink

    For anyone’s information, as I predicted, True Blood’s ratings continue to erode, week by week, in its Season 6—falling below 4 million per episode for the first time last Sunday (3.93 million first-view viewers) despite no competition from live sporting events—a cautionary tale for anyone willing to learn. Don’t stray from the original material, don’t marginalize popular characters, don’t overlay your own “creative” agenda on the adaptation, don’t think you know what viewers “want” when the blogosphere tells you differently……

    Or alternatively it’s a show which has become increasingly terrible absolutely regardless of whether it’s a faithful adaptation or not, so people are tuning out ;)

    As for the blogosphere and message boards, creators certainly don’t want to be listening to what they say. There’s no consensus. If HBO went completely stark raving mad and decided to base their production decisions based on what the good folks of WiC are saying, they wouldn’t know where to start. Some people are saying even 8 seasons is too much and it should be 7 tops. Others are saying 10 or 12 seasons. Some are demanding reasonably close adaptations of AFFC/ADWD over 3 or even 4 seasons, others think they should drop most of the books or even skip them entirely and reintroduce the abandoned five-year gap. There’s far too many competing opinions and ideas to make pleasing everyone viable.

    In two years when it will be clear to absolutely everyone that WOW will not be released in time to keep ahead of the show, expect GRRM to blame D&D.

    I very much doubt it. GRRM has been very supportive of the adaptation even when there’s individual decisions he’s disagreed with (such as the Mago thing). The HBO series has quadrupled his book sales in just two years and raised his profile to massive levels. Even if the entire TV series sucks from episode 401 onwards, GRRM is not going to get into a public spat with the producers. He’s way too professional for that and it is almost impossible to draw him into a conversation criticising people in private, let alone in public forums.

    I can guarantee you D&D are in it to win it and will not rush the series to end if they see great TV adaptation potential in these last two books…

    I think at some point D&D are going to burn out or need to take a break. At the moment they apparently segue from making one season straight into the next with almost no downtime. They’ve lived and breathed this project since the start of 2006, so that’s almost eight years already with potentially another five years to go. Given that GoT has raised their profiles so much that they could quit tomorrow and go back to working in film, but probably for a lot more money for a lot less work, it’s going to be interesting to see if HBO keep them for the duration. This is also an issue because, unlike the actors, D&D are only on two-year contracts and the immense success of the show means they can probably negotiate raises every two years.

    I’m more concerned about losing one or both of D&D before this thing is through than losing any of the actors. I hope not, and they’ve said they want to see it through, but will that be true in two or three years’ time?

  162. DH87
    Posted July 3, 2013 at 4:38 pm | Permalink

    Ol Dirty Baratheon: It’s actually a cautionary tail that when you base TV show off bad novels it only works if someone like Alan Ball is involved. The first three seasons of Trueblood were great because the show was aware of how bad it was.

    Mr. Ball was involved directly as writer and showrunner for all five completed seasons, so presumably he would have utilized his magic touch for his entire tenure. We do seem to agree that TB, at its short-lived best, was witty, fun, sexy, and sharp, but never in the GOT, Homeland, Mad Men category.

    Metacritics scores for the first five seasons don’t demonstrate some great fall-off after the first three seasons (64, 74, 79, 74, 73, respectively); neither do Metacritics user scores ( 8.1, 8.1, 7.4, 7.5, 6.8). Average ratings for the five completed seasons (in millions) : 2.o0; 4.28; 4.97; 4.97; 4.67. Season 6 is down in both Metacritics scores: 56 for critics, 6.6 for users. Average ratings for the first three episodes of Season 6 are also down, 4.16, and sinking.

    What I see is a slow eroding of viewers’ patience with recycled plotlines, increasingly unlikeable and uninteresting lead characters (played by Moyer and Paquin), and heavy-handed social messaging. After blowing these iceberg-sized holes below the waterline, Mr. Ball jumped the sinking ship for Banshee and Wichita.

  163. Arthur
    Posted July 3, 2013 at 5:20 pm | Permalink

    Adam Whitehead,

    I understand this is a huge endeavor for D&D but I also understand the TV show is their baby and I highly doubt they will put it up for adoption.

    As far as being burnt out, that would hold true if this were a normal job but it isn’t and I’m sure it’s a lot of work but it’s the kind of work D&D love… Imagine having a job where you get to travel to exotic locations and be with friends the whole time. Imagine a job where you get a huge open canvas to express you view of a source material you love and get to share that view with millions.

    I am not saying you don’t raise valid points but this has to be a dream job for D&D and if, in their vision, the source material demands 7 or 8 or 9 or even 10 seasons of TV they will not hesitate to do so.

    The source material (last 2 books) will dictate how many seasons there are. Like I said before this TV show is D&D’s baby and dream job. I have full confidence in D&D raising this child and being there from cradle to grave and making the series last how ever many seasons it takes to tell this story in the best and most entertaining way possible.

  164. Zack
    Posted July 3, 2013 at 5:51 pm | Permalink

    Adam Whitehead. I very much doubt it. GRRM has been very supportive of the adaptation even when there’s individual decisions he’s disagreed with (such as the Mago thing). The HBO series has quadrupled his book sales in just two years and raised his profile to massive levels. Even if the entire TV series sucks from episode 401 onwards, GRRM is not going to get into a public spat with the producers. He’s way too professional for that and it is almost impossible to draw him into a conversation criticising people in private, let alone in public forums.

    Hmmm what about infamous “To my detractors post” and other angry posts on his Not a Blog? Whatever his talent is, GRRM does not like to acknowledge his own faults.

    What do you think is going to happen in 2 years when the media will truly begin to pressure GRRM about the release of WOW? GRRM did not handle the pressure very well in 2009-2010 period when he was being pressured as to DWD, and now precisely because of the success of the show and his newly acquired mainstream profile, the pressure is going to be that much greater. I also think GRRM has put himself in a coner by still insisting that the show will not overtake the books. So in 2 years or so, things will get very interesting. . . . I don’t think GRRM will initiate criticism out of the blue but i do think he will blame D&D when he will be inevitably questioned about the show overtaking the books by the journalists.

  165. Ol Dirty Baratheon
    Posted July 3, 2013 at 7:04 pm | Permalink

    DH87,

    Alan Ball made Trueblood watchable. I point out the first three seasons because that’s when Ball’s heart was really in it. It was a show that was well aware of its own absurdity and developed great characters. I have always thought, however, that if bill and sookie were removed it would have been a better show.

    I remember watching season 4.The main protagonist were walking down the street in full leather in slow motion, that was the moment Trueblood jumped the shark. I remember saying Alan Ball must have gotten bored. Sure enough i see a new blip “Alan Ball has to do one more season of Trueblood then he can do whatever he wants.”

    The series started about normal people dealing with the existence of vampires. This situation kept the characters real and lead to some great dark comedy, such as the sheriff finding a decapitated body and saying “f*** this, I quit.”

    Starting with 5 its been a secret vampire oligarchy and religious Apocalypse show. That is way to serious as subject matter. The reason you are only seeing the ratings drop now is viewers are giving up on the show. I watched all of 5 hoping it would get better.

    I highly doubt I will make it through season 6. The story has become unwatchable and there isn’t enough nudity to cover up the lack of plot.

    That said D and D are seemingly still very much into doing GoT. So long as they are committed to the project (and it sounds like they were already planning on spending 8 years doing it) GoT will be just fine.

  166. House Farwynd
    Posted July 3, 2013 at 7:22 pm | Permalink

    I don’t even want to think this thought through…

  167. DH87
    Posted July 3, 2013 at 7:24 pm | Permalink

    Agree re: D&D. So long as they don’t burn bridges with either HBO or GRRM, they have a bright future, one that can easily extend long after GOT, given HBO’s propensity toward show nepotism.

    That said, it is exhausting to run any show, much less one as complex as GOT. An obvious step to forestall burnout would be to hand over more of the writing to wee Bryan, just as soon as he’s able to handle more episodes, and to Vanessa, too. I’m not stirring the pot, but rather harkening back to AB’s plea of “exhaustion” as his reason for leaving TB, a show much less ambitious than GOT, after five years.

  168. DH87
    Posted July 3, 2013 at 7:49 pm | Permalink

    Adam Whitehead: Or alternatively it’s a show which has become increasingly terrible absolutely regardless of whether it’s a faithful adaptation or not, so people are tuning out ;)

    I stand corrected, Mr. Whitehead: “Don’t stray from the original material unless injecting your own Jungian/Buddhist-influenced world view will improve the original dramatically.” :) But TB did lose book fans pretty completely after a bunged-up Season 4 (Book 4 was widely considered the high point of the now completed series). I’m sure you see the GOT parallels here.

    And the TB blogosphere and critics alike begged for a resetting of the original material’s character dominance—to focus on Eric Northman, in whom AB was strangely uninterested. Imagine D&D spending five seasons making Hodor the romantic and dramatic lead of GOT, to the exclusion of all calls to the contrary. How united would WiC voices be to “in the name of God, get back to the original material”?

  169. Adam Whitehead
    Posted July 4, 2013 at 5:23 am | Permalink

    Hmmm what about infamous “To my detractors post” and other angry posts on his Not a Blog? Whatever his talent is, GRRM does not like to acknowledge his own faults.

    The ‘detractors’ post was, to be fair, after about three years of near-constant harrassment, trolling (including some of a very serious kind) and criticism of GRRM on his blog, in emails, at appearances, and also of some of his friends, family and other fans as well. That said, whilst GRRM was clearly irritated in that post he didn’t go off on a wild rant and didn’t name anyone specifically. It was more of a general statement of irritation.

    What do you think is going to happen in 2 years when the media will truly begin to pressure GRRM about the release of WOW? GRRM did not handle the pressure very well in 2009-2010 period when he was being pressured as to DWD, and now precisely because of the success of the show and his newly acquired mainstream profile, the pressure is going to be that much greater.

    Around 2009-10 is when GRRM began to be a lot more open about progress on the book, where things had gone wrong (which would have been helpful to post a couple of years earlier), page counts which were regularly updated etc. I’d argue the nadir of GRRM’s PR-handling was actually in 2007-08, when he exercised near-constant radio silence on the matter of ADWD’s progress. Given that we were expecting the book in 2006 or 2007 at the latest based on statements made when AFFC came out, it was even more puzzling.

    I think the situation right now is different. We have more information now on TWoW then we did on ADWD two years into its writing and GRRM makes public appearances more frequently where someone always asks him about the book (and, hopefully positively, he is blogging a lot less).

    I don’t think GRRM will initiate criticism out of the blue but i do think he will blame D&D when he will be inevitably questioned about the show overtaking the books by the journalists.

    I don’t see how GRRM could do that. If the TV show overtakes him because the book’s not out, the only angle for him to criticise D&D is because he thinks they could have strung the show out longer, which I don’t see is possible. It might be that he’s not fully taken on board the “It’ll probably be 8 seasons,” statements, as I can’t see how it’s possible to reconcile 3 seasons of AFFC/ADWD (or even 2 full seasons) with that approach.

  170. Gorrean
    Posted July 4, 2013 at 6:00 am | Permalink

    ShadowStalker,

    Masterful!
    Varamyr Fourskins, I bow to you, ser. This is the best material I’ve read on the saga so far. You got yourself a new reader here.
    Yanis

  171. Alex Dubrovsky
    Posted July 4, 2013 at 6:50 am | Permalink

    Adam Whitehead,

    I think the situation right now is different. We have more information now on TWoW then we did on ADWD two years into its writing and GRRM makes public appearances more frequently where someone always asks him about the book (and, hopefully positively, he is blogging a lot less).

    The only real update on TWOW he gave in last 2 years was that he’s about 1/4 done as of March 2013, and it wasn’t on his blog but in an interview. He said a few times that he has 200 or so pages, but most of them are ADWD leftovers which will probably be rewritten to death by the time TWOW comes out.

    DH87,

    TB ratings are falling because the show was completely terrible for 2 full seasons, and continues to be even more terrible this season. The first 3 seasons were fun – absurd, ridiculous, but fun. Then the fun and whatever small parts of logic were in the show were thrown out in favor of outright batshit insanity and stories that only a person on drugs might come up with. And now we have a concentration camp for vampires, complete with Dr. Mengele and facilities for mass extermination. Whoever came up with this, should be forbidden from ever writing again.

  172. DH87
    Posted July 4, 2013 at 12:32 pm | Permalink

    Alex Dubrovsky: And now we have a concentration camp for vampires, complete with Dr. Mengele and facilities for mass extermination. Whoever came up with this, should be forbidden from ever writing again.

    Agreed. If TB continues, the people of Bon Temps will reenact The Trail of Tears, The War of the Roses, The Great Migration, The Fall of the Romanovs—buck naked—for anyone who missed the cultural significance of the actual events. Unfortunately, Mr. Hudis, who was responsible for the story arc for Season 6, may be gone, but he has a development deal with HBO, so he and Mr. Ball, who still has some overall creative input, will remain on the airwaves for the indefinite future.

  173. Adam Whitehead
    Posted July 5, 2013 at 4:46 am | Permalink

    The only real update on TWOW he gave in last 2 years was that he’s about 1/4 done as of March 2013, and it wasn’t on his blog but in an interview. He said a few times that he has 200 or so pages, but most of them are ADWD leftovers which will probably be rewritten to death by the time TWOW comes out.

    True, but at least we have that information. In 2007, two years out from ADWD, we had zero information on how many pages he’d done aside, IIRC, from a few rare comments that he was reworking Jon Snow’s storyline and that he had 500 MS pages left over from AFFC (which, we later discovered, he’d already partially thrown out by that point).

  174. Alex Dubrovsky
    Posted July 5, 2013 at 7:39 am | Permalink

    DH87,

    Isn’t there a Romanov character in book 10 or thereabouts? There, make it a Romanov princess, cast a hot Russian actress and it’ll be a great storyline for season 7.

  175. Zack
    Posted July 5, 2013 at 12:55 pm | Permalink

    Adam Whitehead: True, but at least we have that information. In 2007, two years out from ADWD, we had zero information on how many pages he’d done aside, IIRC, from a few rare comments that he was reworking Jon Snow’s storyline and that he had 500 MS pages left over from AFFC (which, we later discovered, he’d already partially thrown out by that point).

    So basically the only information we DO have is that he has not made much progress in 2 years since release of DWD, so how is it good news? And how does one reconcile this information with GRRM’s insistance that the show should not overtake the books? Do you not agree that GRRM face agressive questioning by the media in 2 years? And if so, what do you think his response will be? Why is it out-of-the-question for GRRM to attempt to excuse himself by saying “well, the show is only overtaking the books because the last 2 books that are 1000 pages each have not been adapted properly?”

  176. DH87
    Posted July 5, 2013 at 4:55 pm | Permalink

    Alex Dubrovsky: Isn’t there a Romanov character in book 10 or thereabouts? There, make it a Romanov princess, cast a hot Russian actress and it’ll be a great storyline for season 7.

    Yes, you’re right. I’ll spoil-tag for any Southern Vampire Mysteries book readers: Eric Northman’s Roman Empire “Maker” snatches the Czarevich Alexei Nikolaevich from the Ekaterinburg massacre of the Romanovs and turns him into Eric’s vampire “brother.”


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