‘Game of Thrones’ Producer Wants 8 Seasons Total – Will You Watch?

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Peter Dinklage Face Scars Game of Thrones season 3 Game of Thrones Producer Wants 8 Seasons Total   Will You Watch?

Game of Thrones is riding high following the release of the full season 3 trailer – teasing the return of fan-favorite characters along with some new faces, not to mention some epic dragon action! The show continues to cull a strong and passionate following, leading many viewers to wonder just how long can the show keep up the pace and how many seasons will HBO produce. After all, the series is limited by creator George R.R. Martin’s book series, which includes five published installments with two more on the way.

So how many more seasons will HBO’s Game of Thrones stay on the air? If showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss have it their way, the series’ lifespan could ratchet up to eight seasons, but only so long as the network wants to keep producing it.

Benioff and Weiss recently opened up about the program’s longevity in a recent interview with Mother Jones, in which they discussed not only the duration of the show but also some of the difficulties and challenges they faced in shooting its upcoming third season. On the specific topic of Thrones‘ remaining seasons, however, they had this to say:

MJ: I gather that Game of Thrones could last eight or nine seasons. Does that mean putting novel writing on hold for a decade?

B&W: Yes, if we live that long and HBO keeps wanting to make the show. We have the opportunity here to tell a coherent story that lasts for 80 hours. And while a canvas of that size presents all sorts of storytelling problems, it also allows us to spend more time with these characters we love than we’ll ever get again. Every once in a while we get five minutes to think about thinking about novels. But mostly we’re just happy when we get to read one now and again.

There has always existed a degree of uncertainty over how long Game of Thrones will last, but with the critical and mainstream success the show has enjoyed since first airing back in 2011 (not to mention the slew of Emmy nominations it has received and won), it seems likely that it will soldier on to the very end once George R.R. Martin has completed his as-yet unfinished septet of epic fantasy novels. If nothing else, it’s clear that Benioff and Weiss are game to continue serving as executive producers for as many seasons as HBO gives them.

Game of Thrones Danaerys and the Unsullied Game of Thrones Producer Wants 8 Seasons Total   Will You Watch?

For fans, 80 hours of television spent in Westeros and Essos should sound like a dream come true. If the span of Martin’s original work serves as any indication, however, that figure might be somewhat conservative. Season three – which premieres on March 31st, 2013 – only covers the first half of the third book in the Song of Ice and Fire series, titled A Storm of Swords; season four will adapt the remainder, a natural split given the immensity of the story. (The novel is so long, in fact, that the UK and Australia editions were sold in two parts.)

That leaves books four and five – A Feast For Crows and A Dance With Dragons, respectively – left to transplant from page to screen, as well as the incomplete sixth and seventh entries, titled The Winds of Winter and A Dream of Spring. The latter two novels remain unknown quantities in the television show’s scale; they could fit into a single season each or require separation just like A Storm of Swords. Meanwhile, A Feast For Crows and A Dance With Dragons both boast impressive page lengths, but could arguably be cut down and combined into one total season together. Eight seasons, as suggested, seems like a good ballpark figure, but as Martin has neither finished The Winds of Winter nor A Dream of Spring, we can only go by what Benioff and Weiss have to say for the time being.

In the meantime, the show’s viewers can look ahead to season 3. Are you in it for the long haul, and does another five seasons of Game of Thrones excite you? Put your two cents in the poll below and in the comments section, and we’ll see you back here when Game of Thrones returns to television at the end of the month!

[poll id=”549″]

Game of Thrones season 3 premieres Sunday, March 31 on HBO.

Source: Mother Jones

Follow Andy Crump on Twitter @agracru
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  1. Boy am I ready for this! In a world where Breaking Bad is leaving and Community and Parks and Rec stand constantly on the bubble, it’s a great to know that there’s something that’s going to be sticking around for the long haul.

    • AGREED! Man I have catch up on Game of Thrones though before the new season starts. I am way beyond excited with this news.

  2. I’d absolutely watch 8 seasons if the 1st 2 seasons are any indication of what’s to come…
    I’ve flirted with the idea of reading the books but I’ve decided that I want to remain un-spoiled about what’s coming up on the show. I’m 100% invested in each storyline and I’ve yet to encounter a dull moment.
    My only worry… Is that at some point HBO might decide to tighten the purse strings. GoT is the most expensive show ever produced and while I believe it’s money well spent if there comes a time when viewership declines that might cause some concerns with the network. So I pray that never happens.

    • You said it all man. I’ll watch this show for as long as it stays on air.
      As for reading the books, I also thought about doing it, but I’m gonna wait till the show ends and then dig into the books.
      Apparently the show is very different from the source material, but like you said, there’s sure to be some spoilers.
      (I’ve always said it’s best to read the books after seeing the movies anyways – it makes for a better viewing, and reading, experience)

      • I plan on doing the same thing-read the books AFTER the show is over. I bought the first and second book years ago, but never ended up reading them and I’m so HAPPY I decided to watch the series before reading any of the books. I like not having anything spoiled and being surprised as I’m watching. GREAT JOB HBO AND GEORGE R.R. MARTIN! LONG LIVE GAME OF THRONES!

    • you should read the books, youre missing a lot

      • @ The Avenger

        I wouldn’t say that the show is very different from the source material or at least IMO it isn’t. They have definitely had to cut parts out or make scenarios different (ex: Rob Stark’s wife story is complete different), but mostly it’s because there isn’t enough time to explain in a 10 episode season.

        I’d say you’re doing yourself a favor by waiting to read the books, because Martin will be done with the last two by the time this series is over. It kills me to know that I have to wait a couple more years until the next book is out. My only fear is Martin’s age, I just hope he can finish all the books in time.

        • The books are totally great on their own merits, if you’ve seen the first two seasons of the show I’d highly encourage reading the first two books, it will only enhance things. I didn’t think I’d be interested in reading them either and got them shoved on me and was glad for it. I could see not wanting to read the third book before seeing the third season. Be prepared to be blown away, though. Ai yi yi…

          Also they’ve put a lot more money into this new season, and expanded the time of the episodes, GoT is going to have a much broader epic look and feel to it this time around.

        • There is no way in hell he will have the 2 remaining novels completed before this show is done with an 8th season. He averages around 5-6 yrs between novels. The 6th book probably wont even come out till the show is getting ready for its 5 or 6th season. Then the last book will be out some 2 yrs after the show would theoretically be done. Martin has more than pissed off fans of the novels with this time frame of releasing novels.

          • Had to scroll down a bit but I knew someone would have the truth here. The show is okay (with the exception of Dinklage who is amazing!). But no way he will have the last 2 books done in 5 years.

    • Kevin– my two cents:

      Read the books now. You will not regret it. Benioff and Weiss happen to be very, very gifted at making the material feel fresh even for dedicated fans of the source material, and deftly build and maintain tension and suspense so well that you’ll still feel the impact of major dramatic beats and reveals no matter how many times you’ve read the novel.

      Speaking for myself, I found S2 to work really well despite the fact that after watch S1, I devoured the entire book series. Credit to that goes to the showrunners, largely, and a lot also should be given to the cast, who turn out such great, moving, compelling, human performances that we empathize with them thoroughly- which makes the stuff that happens to them hit hard no matter how much we already know of the plot’s details.

      I get wanting to stay pure. I do! And if you choose to do that and read the books once the show is done, I respect that. But that’s going to be a long, long time off, and I think you’ll be happier having read the books than not, if only because Martin’s a very good writer.

      • Well, based on the replys to this thread I went out and bought books 1 and 2. I still want to remain spoil free so I’ll read book 3 after season 4 ends.
        Thanks for the replys & recommendations my fellow Ranters.

        • I can’t imagine how reading Book 3 could ever spoil watching GOT Season 3. The anticipation of watching it come to life on screen is even more than I can handle right now! The producers are brilliant, and I know it will enrich the whole journey. (I actually feel sorry for the fans that haven’t read Book 3, because they may miss out on little details and information that would only enhance each episode:)

    • Read the books.
      I saw the first season before I read the books, and find that having read them I enjoy the series more.

    • You will never regret having read the books. They greatly enhance your appreciation for the writers and producers of the series, and even more so the author, George R.R. Martin.

  3. Yeah, I’d watch all 8 seasons.

    I’m also planning to wait until it’s all over before reading the books to remain spoiler free and excited.

    • Honestly you’re missing out. While I enjoy the TV series, the books are so much better. I’m re-reading the books beforehand because I want to be able to compare (although it did nearly ruin Season 2 for me, because they changed a lot of things).

  4. Without a doubt.

  5. I’ve read all five books, but currently I’m rereading Storm of Swords to prepare for the third season. It’s such a rich book it’s a joy to read again, but would I do the same thing for Feast for Crows and Dance with Dragons? Ehh…. Let’s hope Weiss and Benioff do some much needed editing to the fourth and fifth entries. I’m confident GRRM can rebound with the sixth and seventh books, though.

    • I agree, A Storm of Swords has been the best book by far and those who haven’t read the books are really going to enjoy the next two seasons for sure. I also agree that AFFC was meh, but I did enjoy A Dance with Dragons. That might be because I missed some of the characters that weren’t in AFFC.

      Weiss and Benioff have said that when they film season 5 and 6 they will be combining material from both books since they both happen at the same time. Not to mention people would freak out not seeing some of their favorite characters for a whole season. So hopefully this strategy will help make both books more entertaining.

      GRRM is going to come back in a big way in The Winds of Winter because of what he said in an interview that I read. I don’t want to say anything because I don’t want to spoil anything for people who haven’t read the books.

      • If you’re hinting about the two or three chapters he released, then I fully understand your trepidation. Winds of Winter holds many of the events I personnally wanted to see in ADWD but had to wait, again, like so many of us fans.

        As far as eight seasons? Well, if what I red (which might be the same article you red) is true, eight seasons might be too small to contain it all.

      • A Feast For Crows seems to be the consensus pick for “worst in the series”. I’m inclined to agree, though Martin’s worst is still something I’d rather read than many others’ best.

        And yeah, A Storm of Swords is just non-stop amazing. If Martin can top if with any of his remaining entries, I think it’ll be a miracle.

        I’ll also echo the fondness for A Dance With Dragons, which DEFINITELY has to do with the return of a number of beloved characters absent from AFFC.

  6. Bring back Jason mamoa

    • cant they?…isnt he dead?…melisandre can do some magic s*** or some other magician?

    • How? Danaerys burned his body to ash in season 1 and hatched her dragon eggs…

  7. I think the only thing that could prevent the show from having up to 8 seasons would be budget constraints. Rome went the same way after it was costing HBO too much.

    I don’t think Game of Thrones is nearly as costly as Rome was though, in it’s current state anyway.

  8. this would be great, but i have serious doubts that book seven will be done in time. At his current pace the sixth book might not even be done before they get through the material for books 3, 4, and 5. fingers crossed though.

    • I’m just hoping that GRRM lives long enough to actually finish the series right now… a proper ending to the TV series would be nice, but merely a bonus right now. Martin isn’t ancient – he’s 64 but I’m always worried that he’ll have a heart attack or something, but I guess we’ll see.

      • I hate to be macabre and second this…but yeah, I second this.

        • yuuuup! Is it me or does martin look like the dirty old neighbor we get warned about as kids lol

  9. How will they tell the whole story in 8 seasons?

    especially since 3 and 4 are based on one book, that leaves 4 more and 2 still being written(6 books) to be crammed into 4 seasons…

    also if they end the series without concluding the story arch then it will be like the ending to mass effect 3, only for television.

    this show will only work with a good 10 or 12 seasons. especially if they will conclude the story(how remains a mystery since they are still being written)

  10. Considering that the Harry Potter movies totaled eight in all, eight seasons certainly seem feasible. But I’m hoping for ten seasons for a project as massive as the Ice & Fire series – but maybe they can somehow film two seasons at one time to avoid some of the passage of time between seasons, similar to how Peter Jackson filmed all three Lord of the Rings movies at the same time.

    I have no idea how TV series filming work as opposed to the LoTR movies though, and I guess it would largely depend on the locations where they’d have to film, but I think with some organization they could do that.

  11. Only 8 seasons? I mean, isn’t even Dexter on it’s what, 9th…? Game Of Thrones is in a class far superior to shows like Dexter and True Blood, even Breaking Bad and Walking Dead. (Nothing against any of those shows…)

  12. a good story is always a good story…it doesnt matter how many seasons are…If its good or keeps the same tone as the previous 2, I´ll be watchin it.

  13. YEP! I’LL HAVE 8 SEASONS PLEASE! is it too much to ask?

  14. Didnt read the books but I was on line for a ride at Great Adventure and heard someone talking about what happens in the third book. I couldnt believe what I heard, it actually bothered me the rest of the day. Not even because I didnt want to know what happens but because I was angry at what happens.

    I guess everyone who read the books knows the shocking scene I’m talking about.

    anyway I’d def watch 20 seasons of GOT if they made it, one of the best shows on tv by far, Breaking Bad, Homeland, GOT, Sons of anarchy, Justified, Walking Dead, Boardwalk Empire are my favorite shows right now.

  15. hell yeah the more the better I love it bring it on

  16. If there isn’t at least 14 more seasons I’m going to be pissed.

  17. I dont know what the hell Game of Thrones is nor what it is about, but the guy on the pic above must be casted as Luke Skywalker for the next Star Wars trilogy.

    • That man is Peter Dinklage, and he is a Dwarf, which unfortunately rules him out of that role. He is a brilliant actor though, possibly the best there is on Game of Thrones.

      • peter dinklage is my hero

  18. 8 seasons? i don’t know i guess it could work. if i were making of GOT then book 4 and 5 combine as 3 seasons. making it GOT in total 7 seasons. which i understand the cost to making GOT and any other show. but book 4 and 5 can be cover in 2 seasons. i don’t know and we all don’t really know. i really do hope that GOT will be the TV show that finishes a story based a series that actually finishes. if that were to happen then i think GOT will be the first TV show ever to complete a book series for TV. i see GOT only last for 10 seasons, but i hope that everything will be just fine.

  19. HELL YEAH!!!! :)

  20. I’d be delighted to have more than 8 seasons to be honest.

  21. Is it just me or does the imp just look cooler with that scar? He’s not supposed to look cooler, he’s supposed to have less nose.

  22. The way I see it is that 8 won’t do it …

    They are splitting up A Storm of Swords into two seasons because of the length of the book. So that, season 3, and 4.

    Now, A Feast for Crows is a little shorter than A Dance with Dragons, but the tricky part is they take place at the same time. I can’t imagine HBO saying good bye to half the cast for a year or two while they film the adaptation of Crows, so the most likely scenario is that the writers will merge Crows and Dragons. If that is the case, I could see them doing this in two seasons (three would be preferable). I really can’t see both books being adapted into one season (like this article says) unless its a 20 episode season. So that would be season 5 and 6. Now, that leaves Winds of Winter, which probably will need two seasons and Dream of Spring will need two seasons … so 7&8, and 9&10. 11 if they add another season to adapt Crows and Dragons. Granted the last two books could be short and only need 1 season.

    And what if Martin pulls a Martin and splits one the last two books into two, or both.

    I think its premature to say 8 seasons, unless HBO does not have plans to adapt the last two books.

    And then there is the other Martin factor. He needs to pick up the pace. The latest we might see the sixth book (hopefully) is in 2016, and then 2021. So obviously HBO needs to implore some Sopranos type delays to allow Martin to catch up. If they have to delay, I suggest some prequel mini series to keep us satisfied. I would love to see Robert’s Rebellion dramatized, or Aegon’s conqueroring.

    All I do know is, a) HBO has to do the whole series, and b) do it in a way that honors what they have done so far, and I wouldn’t say, hey were are only going to do 8 or 9 seasons when 9 or 10 or 11 might be needed.

    • agreed. and for all we know there could be more books

    • and i wouldnt mind seeing both those prequels

      • Please no prequels until he finishes writing the series! No one but Martin could write them, so he just has to step it up. (I’m sure he has it all mapped out anyway)

  23. i would watch all 8 there is supposed to be seven books so it isnt a stretch by the producer the only thing is they are going to have to run books four and five together and possibly split it up into two seasons

  24. I really liked this series but each season only has 8 episodes? And a massive gap in between seasons. I am actually loosing my interest in it now because it seems like forever since it was on air.

    I think the same will happen with many other viewers. You need momentum. This is the age of people downloading content but the producers seem stuck in the late 80s.

  25. No. There’s plenty of better fantasy out there. This is just War of the Roses retold in a fantasy setting…and badly I might add.

    • Tell me whats better than this please? I have not seen buzz like this over a television show on hbo since sopranos. Some things are epic. The books are pure genius. The show is pure genius.

  26. Really? Better fantasy? Please tell me where… this is what fantasy looks like. You cant get much better than this.

  27. He is my favorite character

  28. Yes absolutely. So excited can’t wait