House Of The Dragon: Everything We Know About The Game Of Thrones Spinoff
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Variations of the much loved sci-fi franchise's spin-off have been on and off again more times than we can count, but now it's finally going ahead on HBO Max.
Named House of the Dragon, the series is based on George RR Martin's book, Fire and Blood, and is being directed by Miguel Sapochnik.
Here's everything we know so far...
When will House Of The Dragon air?
House Of The Dragon is set to air for 10 episodes to start off with, and is being tipped for "sometime in 2022," according to Deadline.
HBO's president of programming, Casey Bloys, told the publication that writing begun on the show in January, but he added that there was a lot of prepping before it would be ready for screens, seeing as it is a "big, complicated show".
The fact that HBO has named some of the show's key cast members is also a good sign, hinting that it's on the way to production sooner, rather than later.
The official Game Of Thrones Twitter account even teased the show was being made this year. "Dragons are coming. #HouseoftheDragon begins production in 2021," a tweet wrote, with a snap which may well give us a hint as to what the dragons will look like:
Almost every season of Game Of Thrones has premiered in spring, so here's hoping the spin-off follows suit and drops in early 2022, so we have less time to wait!
What's the plot of House Of The Dragon?
House Of The Dragon is set 300 years prior to Game Of Thrones. It centres around King Viserys I Targaryen, and the Targaryen family at the height of their power.
According to the book's synopsis, we can expect it to cover several of the major historic battles, like the Dance of Dragons (aka the Targaryen civil war). The Doom of Valyria will also feature, as the book spans 150 years of the white haired family's reign.
"Centuries before the events of A Game of Thrones, House Targaryen-the only family of dragonlords to survive the Doom of Valyria-took up residence on Dragonstone," Fire and Blood's blurb reads.
"Fire and Blood begins their tale with the legendary Aegon the Conqueror, creator of the Iron Throne, and goes on to recount the generations of Targaryens who fought to hold that iconic seat, all the way up to the civil war that nearly tore their dynasty apart."
Who has been cast in House Of The Dragon?
While we don't know all of the cast for the new spin-off, what we do know is that Paddy Considine is to play King Viserys Targaryen - a character who is tipped to be a "warm, kind, and decent man", and former King, Jaehaerys Targaryen's successor.
There's a stellar supporting cast, to boot. Matt Smith, Olivia Cooke, and Emma D'Arcy have all signed up for the spin-off, according to Deadline. Doctor Who star Matt will play Prince Daemon Targaryen, a masterful warrior, the King's younger brother and his heir.
His character description reads: "A peerless warrior and a dragonrider, Daemon possesses the true blood of the dragon. But it is said that whenever a Targaryen is born, the gods toss a coin in the air..."
Meanwhile, Olivia will be starring as the equally smart and gorgeous Alicent Hightower, the Hand of the King Otto Hightower's daughter. She's described as "the most comely woman in the Seven Kingdoms."
"She was raised in the Red Keep," a description elaborates. "Close to the king and his innermost circle; she possesses both a courtly grace and a keen political acumen."
Emma will play Princess Rhaenyra Targaryen, a dragonrider, and the king's first-born.
On her character, Martin says: "She is of pure Valyrian blood, and she is a dragonrider. Many would say that Rhaenyra was born with everything... but she was not born a man."
Other signings include Rhys Ifans as Otto Hightower, the Hand of the King, and Steve Toussaint, who is set to play Lord Corlys Velaryon. Meanwhile Eve Best will play Princess Rhaenys Velaryon - Lord Velaryon's wife.
Sonoya Mizuno is also set to play Mysaria - Daemon's close friend.
Who is working behind the scenes on House Of The Dragon?
We know that George RR Martin is going to be fronting the Game Of Thrones prequel as showrunner, as are Ryan Condal and Miguel Sapochnik - who is known for some of Game Of Thrones' most pivotal episodes, including "Hardhome" and "Battle of the Bastards." Sara Lee Hess (Orange Is the New Black) is also working on the writing team.
Sapochnik and Condal will serve as executive producers, too alongside Vince Gerardis and Martin.
Meanwhile, other directors on season one include Clare Kilner (EastEnders), Geeta Patel (The Witcher) and Greg Yaitanes (House).
"The Game of Thrones universe is so rich with stories," HBO programming president Casey Bloys said during an HBO Max unveiling. "We look forward to exploring the origins of House Targaryen and the earlier days of Westeros along with Miguel, Ryan and George."
Where is House Of The Dragon being filmed?
The show is set to shoot primarily at Leavesden Studios in Watford, which is just outside London, and has been the set for the likes of Harry Potter, Inception and Paddington.
Whether simulated or IRL we're not yet sure, but Martin has also teased that the new spin-off could return to several Game Of Thrones filming locations, including Croatia, Iceland, Ireland, Malta, Morocco, Scotland and Spain.
Will there be multiple seasons of House Of The Dragon?
What we do know is that there is copious material in Fire and Blood, so the show could run for multiple seasons, if there's an appetite.
Remember, Fire and Blood is over 700 pages, and tells of events over an 150 year time span. Oh, and Martin still has plans for a second volume, one day.
Now, if that isn't a hefty series we don't know what is.
Where can you watch House Of The Dragon?
In the UK, viewers will be able to watch House Of The Dragon on Sky Atlantic and NOW TV, much like with Game Of Thrones.
It will air on HBO in the US.