Tuesday, 30 March 2021

HBO renews George RR Martin development deal

HBO has renewed its exclusive development deal with George R.R. Martin, originally signed back in 2013.

The deal continues to give HBO the exclusive right to tap Martin for ideas for new TV shows and movies. These ideas may be based directly on Martin's own works (including further works in the Game of Thrones settings of Westeros and Essos) or on other authors' works which Martin recommends to them.

Martin has already been doing this for seven years, developing Nnedi Okorafor's novel Who Fears Death as a TV show (which is now moving forwards with Tessa Thompson producing and Aïda Mashaka Croal showrunning) and Roger Zelazny's novel Roadmarks (with Kalinda Vazquez showrunning). During this time HBO has considered a number of other projects proposed by Martin, including a potential adaptation of Martin's earlier novel Tuf Voyaging and a number of classic SFF novels (rumoured to be from the likes of Robert Silverberg, Nancy Kress and Robert Heinlein). They also filmed a Game of Thrones spin-off pilot which did not move forwards, before greenlighting the series House of the Dragon, which is due to start shooting imminently.

As well as House of the Dragon, HBO are considering multiple spin-off shows based on Game of Thrones, including Nine Voyages (based on the life story of Corlys Velaryon), Ten Thousand Ships (based on Queen Nymeria's flight to Dorne) and Flea Bottom. They have also proposed series based on the Dunk and Egg novellas and on Robert Baratheon's rebellion, with some reports that one of these series will be adapted as an animated series rather than in live-action.

Martin will be named as a producer or executive producer on these projects, but will not be writing directly for any of them due to his commitment to finishing the next Song of Ice and Fire novel, The Winds of Winter. Martin reported in November making strong progress on the novel through last year, with a hope that the ending may be, if not imminent, then at least lurching unsteadily into distant view.

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