HBO’s Emmy Award-winning Game of Thrones is currently careening through its sixth season, and, as it does, it’s breaking new ground. This season marks the first time that the television series has overtaken its source material – the five books in George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire series that have been published, of the seven novels planned. While the series deviates from the novels on some key points, the television series is now a fan’s first shot at experiencing the dramatic twists and shocking reveals the epic series is known for.
So far, the first six seasons ordered by HBO have lasted exactly 10 hour-long episodes, with each season covering roughly one of Martin’s books – though that became difficult with the fourth and fifth novels, which follow different stories over the same period of time. A recent reveal hints at further changes to the nature of the show as it picks up in its seventh season in 2017.
Vanity Fair interviewed Jack Bender (Alias, Lost), who stepped in this season of Game of Thrones to direct the episodes ‘Blood of my Blood’ and ‘The Door.’ When asked if he would return for season seven, Bender responded:
I don’t know the answer to that. They’re only doing seven [episodes], and they’ve got their regulars who have done it forever… I had a great experience doing the show. If available and they wanted me to, I would love to do that.
While there has been no official word from HBO yet about the length of season 7, this does mesh with the previous report that the final Thrones seasons might be abridged. Showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss have previously stated Game of Thrones would end with season 7 or 8, and they expect the series to last only a total of 13 episodes after the conclusion of season 6.
Most fans will probably agree that quality is more important than quantity when it comes to Game of Thrones. While the shortening of seasons will no doubt add some sting to the inevitable conclusion of the beloved series, it’s good to know that the creators are focused on ending on a high note rather than padding things out and overstaying their welcome.
Still, HBO has yet to confirm the episode number for season 7, and has not granted Game of Thrones a season 8 yet, so much of what form the fantasy series will take after season 6 is speculation. Furthermore, whether or not any of the theorized sequels, prequels, or spin-offs will follow the sure-to-be-dramatic conclusion is yet to be seen.
Game of Thrones continues next Sunday with ‘The Broken Man’ @9pm on HBO.
Source: Vanity Fair