HUGE news out of the Television Critics Association upfronts this evening: HBO President Michael Lombardo has just said that Game of Thrones will go at least two more seasons.
For years now, Benioff and Weiss have held fast: Seven Books, Seven Gods, Seven Kingdoms, Seven Seasons. But with only 20 episodes left to wrap it all up, and faced with a cable channel that really wants more, it seems they’ve given in. Entertainment Weekly has just reported from the TCA upfronts that HBO says Game of Thrones will go at least eight seasons.
“Seven-seasons-and-out has never been the [internal] conversation,” Lombardo said to critics at the Television Critics Association’s press tour Thursday. “The question is how much beyond seven are we going to do. [Showrunners David Benioff and Dan Weiss are] feel like there’s two more years after six. I would always love for them to change their minds. That’s what we’re looking at right now.”
And even more exciting: once the series is over, HBO is open to going back and doing prequels.
“I would be open to anything Dan and David want to do,” Lombardo said. “It really would depend fully on what they want to do. I think you’re right, there’s enormous storytelling to be mined in a prequel. We haven’t had any conversations.”
I somehow doubt that Benioff and Weiss would want to go directly into prequels—both have talked about how exhausting this process is, and that when they are done they will need a break. But if HBO is looking to do it and Martin is game, I’m certain that even if they decide they need a break after the intensity of producing Game of Thrones, someone will be found to do it.