HBO has great plans for the Game of Thrones franchise. With the flagship series coming to a conclusion, the cable network has started work on a prequel series that is set 5,000 years before the events of Game of Thrones.
Jane Goldman is making the series with George R.R. Martin, and in a recent interview with The New York Times, Martin gives some further details about the new prequel series, including where the story was pulled from. He explains:
“That’s the show I’m calling ‘The Long Night.’ HBO said, ‘Don’t call it ‘The Long Night,’ so that’s not the official title. But I still think of it as ‘The Long Night.’ That’s the one Jane Goldman wrote, and they’re gearing up for preproduction. Naomi Watts has been cast, so that’s very exciting.
He goes on to say that there is very little material to work with for this series, so they are taking little bits from the books Martin has written about the world of Westeros, and then they are expanding on that and building a whole new story filled with all new characters.
“If you look at the published books so far, there’s really very little material about that — a sentence here, a sentence there. Old Nan tells a tale that takes up a paragraph. So Jane had to create the characters, the settings and some of the events, and we had to look at everything that was said and say, ‘O.K., here’s what was said at this point, we need to make it consistent to that.’ We kicked around some ideas and I made some suggestions. But mostly it’s been Jane running with it. It’s set thousands of years before ‘Game of Thrones.’ King’s Landing does not exist. The Iron Throne does not exist. There are no dragons there.”
Naomi Watts and Josh Whitehouse are set to star in the series, and it’s been said that “the project chronicles the world’s descent from the Golden Age of Heroes into its darkest hour.”
Martin then goes on to talk about a totally different idea that he gave to HBO for another Game of Thrones spinoff series called Spear Carriers. The series would have been set during the events of Game of Thrones, but center on disposable background characters. He said:
“I wanted to do a show called ‘Spear Carriers,’ which would actually be set during the events of ‘Game of Thrones,’ but it wouldn’t be following Dany, Tyrion and Jaime. They would all be there in the background like Hamlet, and it would be more like, ‘Here’s a story about a guy in the City Watch; here’s a story about a prostitute at one of Littlefinger’s brothels; here’s a story about a mummer who’s in town to do juggling and tricks.’ And they all get caught up in the events. I think that kind of show would be a lot of fun to do. Maybe I’ll be able to convince them to do it!”