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Next year will see the release of Game Of Thrones: House Of The Dragon, a prequel series set many hundreds of years before the events of the popular fantasy show. But as it turns out, it wasn't even HBO's first attempt at extending the Game Of Thrones franchise beyond its eight seasons.
According to a new report, a much earlier crack at developing a Game Of Thrones prequel series was ultimately abandoned after spending an incredible $30 million on the pilot episode.
Before we move on, take a look at House Of The Dragon in action below!
This revelation comes via James Andrew Miller's new book, Tinderbox: HBO's Ruthless Pursuit of New Frontiers. During his research, Miller learned about the doomed prequel attempt from WarnerMedia chairman Bob Greenblatt.
“They had spent over $30 million on a Game of Thrones prequel pilot that was in production when I got there,” he explained. “And when I saw a cut of it in a few months after I arrived, I said to Casey [Bloys, HBO’s chief content officer], 'This just doesn't work, and I don't think it delivers on the promise of the original series.' And he didn't disagree, which actually was a relief.”
Greenblatt added that the plug was ultimately pulled because “there was enormous pressure to get it right and I don't think that would have worked". Certainly, following the much-maligned eighth and final season of Game Of Thrones, there's a lot riding on what comes next to rescue the franchise's reputation.
“I'm the one who encouraged Casey to greenlight it to series,” said Greenblatt of the upcoming House Of The Dragon. “I said, 'Let's not risk $30 million on a pilot.' You can't spend $30 million on a pilot and then not pick it up. So, I said, 'Let's not make a pilot. Let's get a great series that we feel good about, and just make it. Or not’.”
House Of The Dragon takes place a couple of centuries before the TV show we know and love, and focuses on the lives, loves, and general machinations of the Targaryens, the dragon-riding royal ancestors of Game Of Throne's hero-turned villain Daenerys Targaryen. It's adapted from George R.R. Martin's 2018 Targaryen history, Fire & Blood Vol. 1.
The first season will run for 10 episodes, with the first instalment expected to land on HBO and HBO max in early 2022.
Featured Image Credit: HBO
Topics: Game Of Thrones
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