Directors for Game of Thrones Season 7 announced


Good morning. Are you ready to start freaking out anticipating Game of Thrones Season 7? No? TOO BAD. Because we already have our first official news about the upcoming season.

Entertainment Weekly has announced the line up of directors for Season 7. And not only is there news about who’s on the list, there’s news about who’s *not* on the list.

This coming year, there will be four directors. That’s one less than the show usually books—usually, there are five directors who helm two episodes apiece, for a total of 10 episodes. (Director 1 does Episodes 1 and 2, Director 2 does episodes 3 and 4, and so on.) The current word is that Seasons 7 and 8 of Game of Thrones, the final two seasons, will be shorter than the last six. So far as we know, Season 7 will be consist of seven episodes and Season 8 will consist of six, although showrunner David Benioff left a little wiggle room in a recent interview. Having only four directors in play supports this contention.

Also, we don’t know which episodes the directors are assigned to. Perhaps three of the directors will direct two episodes apiece and the fourth will direct one.

The directors are:

  • Alan Taylor
    • Game of Thrones: “Baelor,” “Fire and Blood,” “The North Remembers,” “The Night Lands,” “The Prince of Winterfell,” “Valar Morghulis”
    • Other stuff: The SopranosThor: The Dark World
  • Jeremy Podeswa
    • Game of Thrones: “Kill the Boy,” “Unbowed, Unbent, Unbroken,” “The Red Woman,” “Home”
    • Other stuff: Boardwalk Empire
  • Mark Mylod
    • Game of Thrones: “High Sparrow,” “Sons of the Harpy,” “The Broken Man,” “No One”
    • Other stuff: ShamelessEntourage
  • Matt Shakman
    • Game of Thrones: Nothing—he’s new.
    • Other stuff: Mad MenFargoIt’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia

Podeswa has been with the production for a couple of seasons running now. He’s done some fine work, including helming the premiere this year, along with Jon Snow’s resurrection in “Home.” In Season 5, however, he was responsible for the show’s nadir episode, “Unbowed Unbent Unbroken.” (Still, he earned an Emmy nomination for that, and even though the content is questionable, I encourage people to go back and look at the direction, which is very skilled.) Mylod is also a solid director, and has been with it since Season 5. In Season 6, he gave us that lovely show-within-a-show, “A Hound’s Life,” in Episode 7, “The Broken Man.”

It’s been a while since we last saw Taylor. He did the episode that first put Game of Thrones on the map: “Baelor,” aka “The One Where Ned Stark Dies.” Then he directed a heroic four episodes in Season 2 before going off to do movies. It’ll be good to have him back. But he’s not the only surprise. The other is Matt Shakman, who is a total newcomer to the series. He’s known best for directing episodes of It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, which Game of Thrones showrunners David Benioff and Dan Weiss wrote an episode for. I imagine that’s his in here. His other major directing gig was Mad Men, which only wound down a year ago, so perhaps this is the first time his schedules has worked out.

We note that Benioff and Weiss’ newest favorite director, Miguel Sapochnik, is not scheduled for this year. (Sapochnik directed “Hardhome,” “Battle of the Bastards,” and “The Winds of Winter.”) Perhaps that indicates a lack of major battles? Or perhaps after “Battle of the Bastards,” Sapochnik is taking a well-deserved year off.