George R.R. Martin’s ‘Game of Thrones’ Heads to HBO with Dinklage and McCarthy

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I have not read George R.R. Martin’s series of best-selling fantasy novels, but I have been told by many they are quite good and I know they have an extremely dedicated fanbase, so I am sure many will be happy to learn the first two names attached to the project set up at HBO are top notch.

First off you have Tom McCarthy (The Station Agent and The Visitor) aboard to direct with a pilot script from David Benioff (Troy, X-Men Origins: Wolverine) and D.B. Weiss who adapted “Game of Thrones,” the first book from Martin’s “Songs of Fire and Ice” novels. “Thrones” is described as an epic struggle for power set in a vast and violent fantasy kingdom.

As for casting, the first name added is McCarthy’s Station Agent star Peter Dinklage who will play Tyrion, the Queen’s brother who is treated as an outsier because of his size. The plot description for “A Game of Thrones” from the back of the book reads as this:

Long ago, in a time forgotten, a preternatural event threw the seasons out of balance. In a land where summers can last decades and winters a lifetime, trouble is brewing. The cold is returning, and in the frozen wastes to the north of Winterfell, sinister and supernatural forces are massing beyond the kingdom’s protective Wall. At the center of the conflict lie the Starks of Winterfell, a family as harsh and unyielding as the land they were born to. Sweeping from a land of brutal cold to a distant summertime kingdom of epicurean plenty, here is a tale of lords and ladies, soldiers and sorcerers, assassins and bastards, who come together in a time of grim omens.

Here an enigmatic band of warriors bear swords of no human metal; a tribe of fierce wildlings carry men off into madness; a cruel young dragon prince barters his sister to win back his throne; and a determined woman undertakes the most treacherous of journeys. Amid plots and counterplots, tragedy and betrayal, victory and terror, the fate of the Starks, their allies, and their enemies hangs perilously in the balance, as each endeavors to win that deadliest of conflicts: the game of thrones.

“Thrones” is slated to film in the third quarter in Belfast, Northern Ireland, in what the country’s First Minister Peter Robinson hails as “the first TV production of such vast size and scale that has been filmed in Northern Ireland.”

So far there are five novels in the “A Song of Ice and Fire” series with what I understand a total of seven expected to be published and the most recent one, “A Dance with Dragons,” is the most recent and is set to hit bookstores on September 29. If I understand what I have been told correctly “A Dance with Dragons” runs simultaneously with book four, “A Feast for Crows,” a book that upset some of the regular readers of the series since it didn’t include the characters they had come to know and love.

Wikipedia gives the following description for the series:

The story of A Song of Ice and Fire takes place in a fictional world, primarily upon a continent called Westeros but also on a large landmass to the east, known as Essos[4]. Most of the characters are human but as the series progresses other races are introduced, such as the cold and menacing Others from the far North and fire-breathing dragons from the East, both races thought to be extinct by the people of the story. There are three principal storylines in the series: the chronicling of a dynastic civil war for control of Westeros between several competing families; the rising threat of the Others who dwell beyond an immense wall of ice that forms Westeros’ northern border; and the journey of Daenerys Targaryen, the exiled daughter of a king who was murdered in another civil war fifteen years previously (War of the Usurper) and now seeks to return to Westeros and claim her rightful throne. As the series progresses, all three storylines become intensely interwoven and dependent on each other.

Even though it isn’t mentioned, as with all things, I expect they will make the first installment and then move forward based on viewer response. Considering the dedicated fanbase I expect it will be a hit and the rest will follow.

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Weekend: Jan. 17, 2019, Jan. 20, 2019

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