Five 'Game of Thrones' spin-off scripts are being developed

Five 'Game of Thrones' spin-off scripts are being developed

While many of us are barely surviving knowing that we only have one season of Game of Thrones left (welp), you might feel a little better knowing that season eight won't be the last we'll be seeing of Westeros. It's possible that you, just like me, seem to have missed the raven spreading the news that there are five – I repeat five – spin-off scripts being written for Game of Thrones right now.

Initially, only four possible spin-offs were confirmed as being in the works, until author and mastermind behind the franchise George RR Martin announced a couple of months back that Bryan Cogman, who has worked on the TV series since season one, had been added on to pen a fifth project. Martin was excited to add Cogman as a fifth writer, saying that apart from himself and Thrones experts Elio Garcia and Linda Antonsson, “I don’t know anyone who knows and loves Westeros as well as he does”.

Cogman and the four other groups of writers are looking at developing storylines in the Game of Thrones universe, as spin-offs or prequels to the original series. The four other writers are Max Borenstein (who wrote Kong: Skull Island), Jane Goldman (behind Kingsman: The Golden Circle), Brian Helgeland (who wrote Legend), and Carly Wray (writer of Mad Men).

And the latest update about the spin-off writers, who I hope are keeping their heads down and writing furiously at all times, comes from HBO boss Richard Plepler. He told Variety at the Mipcom entertainment trade show in Cannes that the writers are making good progress, so much so that he has already seen early drafts of their scripts.

When he was begged for more information about the scripts and if he could reveal anything more, Plepler said: “No. Other than to say it’s a fantastic group of writers and talent, most of whom have lived inside the Thrones eco-system so are very, very familiar with its intricacies.”

However, he did say that the early drafts were exciting: “I think we will find with this embarrassment of [writing] riches an exciting property for us to moves forward with. We are looking some things, I have read a couple of early bibles and I’m excited about what I’ve seen.”

But apparently, we shouldn't be too hopeful, as it's unlikely that all five of the scripts will actually be realised on screen. Probably only one or two will get the green light for a pilot episode, and even so, it can't be said if the spin-offs will continue to be developed from there.

Martin has also been very secretive about what the spin-offs will cover, but it's been revealed that he is "closely involved" with three of the five scripts. He's also said that he feels a bit uneasy about the term "spin-off" itself. “We are not talking ‘Joey’ or ‘AfterMASH’ or even ‘Frazier’ or ‘Lou Grant,’ where characters from one show continue on to another,” he wrote in a blog post.

“Every one of the concepts under discussion is a prequel, rather than a sequel. Some may not even be set on Westeros. Rather than ‘spinoff’ or ‘prequel,’ however, I prefer the term ‘successor show.’ That’s what I’ve been calling them.”

While he didn't say much else, he did shut down any hopes that fans may have had for backstories about Ser Duncan the Tall and Aegon the Unlikely; and Robert’s Rebellion.

"We’re not doing Dunk & Egg. Eventually, sure, I’d love that, and so would many of you. But I’ve only written and published three novellas to date, and there are at least seven or eight or ten more I want to write," Martin wrote.

“We’re not doing Robert’s Rebellion either. I know thousands of you want that, I know there’s a petition… but by the time I finish writing ‘A Song of Ice & Fire,’ you will know every important thing that happened in Robert’s Rebellion.”

Well, stop talking about it and make it happen, Martin. We've only been waiting forever.