House of the Dragon Showrunners Talk Returning to Westeros in New Featurette

HBO Max has tweeted a new featurette teasing House of the Dragon, the Game of Thrones prequel that’s coming this fall. With a new creative team in place carving out the story with the direct involvement of George R. R. Martin, there is a lot of pressure heading into the premiere as matching the accomplishments of the show’s parent series will be a challenging task. The showrunners speak about these challenges in the featurette, which you can watch below.

“I feel incredibly loyal and responsible to the original show,” says co-showrunner Miguel Sapochnik. “I have a great kind of desire to even be in the same room as that show, because it was a game changer.”

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Excited to create the series with Game of Thrones novelist George R. R. Martin, co-showrunner Ryan J. Condal adds, “George and his writing was a huge influence on me. It’s an incredible feeling to achieve my dream job. You get that great call, which is the thing that every writer is hoping for, telling you, ‘We’re going to go make this thing.’ Then you’re happy for a few seconds, and then you realize the responsibility that’s on your shoulders.”

“I’m excited,” Martin chimes in. “It’s always a little apprehensive when you turn your baby over to foster parents, but I’m involved in this. It’s great to have Ryan, who’s a great writer, and someone who knew my world. He’s gonna do his best to be faithful to it. I knew Miguel Sapochnik was an amazing director. He’d won an Emmy, he’d done some of our best episodes. There’s always a little suspense to, ‘How good is it going to be?’ But I think I’m in good hands with Ryan and Miguel.”

House of the Dragon Was Developed With Respect to Game of Thrones

HBO

“The idea of going back to Westeros was almost too much of a challenge,” Sapochnik explains in the featurette. “You have to start by respecting it. You can’t start by doing different for different’s sake. It really was seeing it through a different perspective that interests me.”

Condal noted, “He saw some of the things that I saw, and it wasn’t just a prequel for prequel’s sake. There was actually a reason to tell the story. George’s work really, truly is an immersive world. There’s unexplored, deep recesses and thousands of years of history. The biggest sets I’ve ever been on, the biggest locations I’ve ever been on, the biggest crews I’ve ever seen. It’s staggering. We do really see the creative world very similarly.”

On what will make this version different from Game of Thrones, Sapochnik also added, “Realizing what worked with Thrones and what didn’t. What do we want to better? How do we want to evolve? We’re going to start in a more grounded, more intimate way. What a great new chapter in the Game of Thrones saga.”

House of the Dragon serves as a prequel series and is set two centuries before the events of Game of Thrones, meeting that there’s very little chance for crossovers. This means the prequel will have to stand on its own with its new cast of characters to tell the story of the beginning of the end of House Targaryen, chronicling the Targaryen civil war, aka the Dance of the Dragons.

House of the Dragon is set to premiere on HBO and HBO Max on Aug. 21, 2022.