As half the nation is shrouded by below-freezing temperatures, HBO promised this week that "winter is coming" in the middle of April: Game of Thrones will return for its fifth season on April 12th. HBO tweeted the show's premiere date on Thursday, adding that acclaimed comedies Veep and Silicon Valley will also come back on the same day to bring some levity to what promises to be another bloody season in Westeros.
Before Game of Thrones launches its fifth season, fans can check out the final two episodes of Season Four – "The Watchers on the Wall" and "The Children" – at IMAX theaters nationwide between January 23rd and 29th. Those showings will also boast an exclusive trailer for the forthcoming season, which we know won't feature popular characters Hodor and Bran.
"We have a season off," actor Kristian Nairn, who portrays Hodor, told the Australian Broadcasting Company earlier this year. "We have a year's hiatus… Solely because, I imagine, our storyline is up to the end of the books." However, the series has added a dozen new faces, including Brazil actor Jonathan Pryce in the role of the High Sparrow and Alexander Siddig as Doran Martell.
In other HBO news, the network also revealed that they're working on a scripted political comedy series called The Brink starring Jack Black and Tim Robbins, Deadline reports. HBO Films' also has Bessie, a Bessie Smith biopic starring Queen Latifah in the titular role, in the works, as well as a two-night, four-hour Frank Sinatra documentary titled Sinatra: All or Nothing at All. That Alex Gibney-directed film will premiere later in the year, around what would have been Sinatra's 100th birthday on December 12th.