George R. R. Martin ‘saddened’ about Game of Thrones prequel axe

Game of Thrones creator George R.R. Martin has assured fans his House of Dragons adaptation hasn’t replaced a TV prequel starring Naomi Watts.

HBO bosses have confirmed that Watts’ drama has been scrapped while greenlighting another show set 300 years before the Game of Thrones story, and now Martin, who was involved in both has spoken out about the decision, insisting he’s not sure why one prequel was axed.

Taking to his blog and revealing he is “saddened to hear” the show he was co-writing with Jane Goldman would not be going to series, the author writes: “Jane Goldman is a terrific screenwriter, and I enjoyed brainstorming with her. I do not know why HBO decided not to go to series on this one, but I do not think it had to do with House of the Dragon.

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“This was never an either/or situation. If television has room enough for multiple CSI and Chicago shows… well, Westeros and Essos are a lot bigger, with thousands of years of history and enough tales and legends and characters for a dozen shows.

“Heartbreaking as it is to work for years on a pilot, to pour your blood and sweat and tears into it, and have it come to nought, it’s not at all uncommon. I’ve been there myself, more than once. I know Jane and her team are feeling the disappointment just now, and they have all my sympathy… with my thanks for all their hard work, and my good wishes for whatever they do next.”

Martin also reveals that House of the Dragon was the first concept he pitched to HBO as a successor to Game of Thrones, which ended its run on TV in May (19), and he’s thrilled to have director Miguel Sapochnik on board for the prequel, calling him “one of the hottest directors in television today”.

The Game of Thrones creator has also given co-showrunner Ryan Condal a big thumbs up, adding, “He’s a terrific writer… and a fan of my books since well before we met.”

Martin will be involved in the new series, written by a team led by Condal, once he has finished work on Winds of Winter – his long-awaited sixth book in his Song of Ice and Fire Saga.

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