Even George R.R. Martin was surprised by HBO’s plan to make four Game of Thrones prequels.
Five Game of Thrones prequel shows are currently in development at HBO: House of the Dragon, the story of a Targaryen civil war; Dunk and Egg, an adaptation of the novella series; and at least three animated series set in the Game of Thrones universe. Surprised? So was George R.R. Martin.
As Insider reported, when Martin was interviewed for the book Tinderbox: HBO’s Ruthless Pursuit of New Frontiers, he said he was shocked to see the announcement of four Game of Thrones prequel shows in development. Apparently, Martin pitched two shows to follow Game of Thrones set in the Game of Thrones universe—Dunk and Egg and what would become House of the Dragon—but then he “suddenly found out they had put four prequels in motion. [House of the Dragon] was just one of them. And the other three were ideas that had come from other people who I guess had read my books or had some of the documents at HBO.” (This was before HBO announced they were also developing Dunk and Egg, and before another spinoff was scrapped after a $30 million pilot was made.)
“It surprised me, I’ll admit that,” said Martin. “I’d never heard of that before. I thought we’d be going ahead with one, with one development, with the one that I pitched to them, the Dance of the Dragons [now called House of the Dragon] idea.” Production need IP like a sword needs a whetstone!