Game of Thrones, is a series that’s deep in the throes of its endgame. The mega-popular HBO fantasy series is approaching the start of its penultimate season, and with Sunday’s announcement that the final season, in 2018, will consist of only six episodes, both HBO and the show’s creative team are clearly thinking about the end of Game of Thrones, as well as life after it.
However, there’s long been speculation that, whatever happens with the progress of George R. R. Martin’s remaining A Song of Ice and Fire novels, the story could somehow continue beyond the lifespan of the main Game of Thrones series. There’s all sorts of ancillary material in Martin’s books and other stories not seen in the series that it could easily fill a movie, a limited series, or even another regular TV series. Just don’t expect the same showrunners at the helm of it.
Any Game of Thrones spinoff plans will not involve the co-creators and showrunners of Game of Thrones, the two men said Sunday, according to Deadline. Speaking on a panel at the South by Southwest festival in Austin, Benioff and Weiss said that while they would love to see a Game of Thrones spinoff on HBO, they’d prefer that “new blood” be in charge of it.
When the topic turned to a potential continuation of Game of Thrones, Benioff shared his thoughts:
“There is always going to be an urge… to keep doing it… I think HBO might well do [a spinoff] and I’m looking forward to watching it… I think its better for them to get new blood in with new visions.”
It certainly makes sense for HBO to want to continue Game of Thrones. It’s one of the most popular and profitable series in the history of the network, and it’s clear that the audience's appetite for the show hasn’t diminished with time. Game of Thrones continues to set records for ratings, streaming and piracy each season, and anticipation is high for the delayed sixth season. Say what you will about that much-maligned frozen-block-of-ice stunt, but it did attract millions of viewers.
At the same time, one can’t blame Benioff and Weiss for not wanting to continue their involvement. They’ve spent years developing one of the most ambitious and intricate TV series in history, a show that takes a tremendous amount of time, energy and effort, and one that’s made both of them significantly wealthy. One can’t question for a minute if they desire, for their next projects, to do something completely different.
Game of Thrones, as the giant block of ice taught us last week, will return for its seventh season on HBO on July 16, 2017. There’s no official word yet on any spinoff plans HBO might have, but Screen Rant will be following any such project closely.