Game of Thrones could be on our screens for ten years, if HBO bosses get their way, but whether or not the hit fantasy drama’s showrunners will allow that to happen remains in doubt.
David Benioff and Dan Weiss have shared their thoughts on when the HBO TV series, based on George RR Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire books, will come to an end, previously hinting that they would stop after seven seasons.
Major cast members recently had their contracts renewed through to a possible seventh run, so long as their characters are not killed off before reaching that stage.
But as fans await the return of Arya, Jon Snow, Daenerys and co. for season five on Sunday 12 April, they will be excited to hear that Game of Thrones might be sticking around for many more years yet.
“We see the light at the end of the tunnel,” Benioff told Entertainment Weekly. “We still have a long way to go and things to figure out but we definitely know where we’re heading and the major end-beats.
“We don’t want people to finally see the end and say, ‘Thank God that’s over’. We know basically how many hours are left in this story. We don’t want to add ten hours to that. It’s about finding that sweet spot so it works for us and for HBO and, most of all, it works for the audience.”
Michael Lombardo, HBO programming president, described deciding when to close a show as “the hard part of what we do”.
“We started this journey with David and Dan. It’s their vision. Would I love the show to go ten years as both a fan and a network executive? Absolutely,” he said, adding that “an honest conversation that explores all possible avenues” will be necessary.
“If they weren’t comfortable going beyond seven seasons, I trust them implicitly and trust that’s the right decision – as horrifying as that is to me.
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“What I’m not going to do is have a show continue past where the creators believe where they feel they’ve finished with the story.”
Lombardo also mentioned the idea of ending Game of Thrones with a big screen movie, revealing that there have been conversations based around how “cool” it would be to do that.
Unfortunately, Thrones hitting cinemas is unlikely, as it would involve “changing the rules” for HBO subscribers.
“The promise is that for your HBO fee we’re going to take you to the end of this,” Lombardo continued. “I feel that on some level [a movie] would be changing the rules: Now you have to pay $16 to see how your show ends.”
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