Say it ain't so!
In a chat with Deadline, the producers of HBO's acclaimed series GAME OF THRONES has only 13-15 episodes left in it. This, despite Sunday's season finale being the highest-rated in the show's history. For some time, the understanding has been that GAME OF THRONES wouldn't make it past an eighth season, but with the rollicking success of season six, you'd think there would be some chatter about extending the show's lucrative run.
Sadly, the producers sound like they're going to stick to their guns. Similar to when Jerry Seinfeld pulled the plug on his massively successful sitcom at the end of the 90s, stunning pop culture by not wanting to overstay his welcome- rather than milking it for all it's worth (I'm looking at you, THE WALKING DEAD!), GAME OF THRONES will not only wrap up in the eighth season, but these final two seasons might be shorter than usual!
We've heard in the past that the show's already-brief 10 episode seasons might be cut down to seven or eight, and the comments below from David Benioff and D.B. Weiss seem to confirm that.
Here's what the duo, who wrote Sunday's "The Winds of Winter," had to say about how much more time we have left with GAME OF THRONES:
WEISS: [...]We want to leave while all the people watching this show are really into it. Get out at a high point and not have it be, well thank god that’s over.
BENIOFF: It’s two more seasons we’re talking about. From pretty close to the beginning, we talked about doing this in 70-75 hours, and that’s what we’ll end up with. Call it 73 for now. What Dan says is really true, but it’s not just trying not to outstay your welcome. We’re trying to tell one cohesive story with a beginning, middle and end. As Dan said, we’ve known the end for quite some time and we’re hurtling towards it. Those last images from the show that aired last night showed that. Daenerys is finally coming back to Westeros; Jon Snow is king of the North and Cersei is sitting on the Iron Throne. And we know the Night King is up there, waiting for all of them. The pieces are on the board now. Some of the pieces have been removed from the board and we are heading toward the end game. The thing that has excited us from the beginning, back to the way we pitched it to HBO is, it’s not supposed to be an ongoing show, where every season it’s trying to figure out new story lines. We wanted it to be one giant story, without padding it out to add an extra 10 hours, or because people are still watching it. We wanted to something where, if people watched it end to end, it would make sense as one continuous story. We’re definitely heading into the end game now.
So there you have it. With 60 completed episodes meaning that 60 hours are in the books, that leaves us only 13-15 more episodes.
This also puts to bed any continued murmurs that the series will wrap up with a big budget feature film. GAME OF THRONES will finish exactly as it started: As an HBO series.
There's much to be said about the restraint shown by the showrunners on GAME OF THRONES. With such a sprawling world, so many interesting characters, and now 100% loose from the shackles of the books, they've easily expanded the series by at least a season or two. There's definitely an appetite for it, and tons of areas that could've been explored. Good for them.
If the series had been on AMC, I'm sure we'd see all kinds of spinoffs, prequels, and sequels.
How do you feel about the finality of these statements, and the fact that GAME OF THRONES will seemingly be in our review mirror by June of 2018? Sound off!