WGA Strike Halts Latest ‘Game of Thrones’ Spin-Off — But Not ‘House of the Dragon’
George R.R. Martin knows that fans of his ever-expanding Game of Thrones universe have grown nervous at the news of projects across Hollywood being derailed by the ongoing Writers Guild of America strikes. In a new blog post, the author confirmed that the upcoming spin-off series A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms: The Hedge Knight will be halted until the strike comes to an end, however, House of the Dragon will remain unaffected.
“As of May 2, the pens are down and the computer screens have gone dark all across Hollywood, but production will continue so long as there are scripts to shoot,” Martin wrote. “The proviso being, of course, that those scripts must be shot EXACTLY as they were as of midnight on May 1. Not a word can be changed, cut, added, not a scene can be altered. All that requires writing… and from now until the strike ends, the writers will be on picket lines, not on sets.”
He added: “The writer’s room on A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms: The Hedge Knight has closed for the duration. Ira Parker and his incredible staff of young talents are on the picket lines.”
House of the Dragon, on the other hand, was renewed for its second season less than a week after it premiered on HBO in August 2022. The script for the prequel was well underway and completed before there was any talk of strikes and closed writer’s rooms.
“Across the ocean, the second season of House of the Dragon started filming April 11 and will continue in London and Wales. The scripts for the eight s2 episodes were all finished months ago, long before the strike began,” Martin wrote. “Every episode has gone through four or five drafts and numerous rounds of revisions, to address HBO notes, my notes, budget concerns, etc. There will be no further revisions. The writers have done their jobs; the rest is in the hands of the directors, cast and crew… and of course the dragons).”
In 2021, Martin inked a five-year deal with HBO to continue his work on Game of Thrones prequels and spin-offs. There’s still work to be done, but the author’s memories of the grueling 1988 strike, which began two years into his career as a television and film writer, and the 100-day strike that began in 2007 and ended in 2008, only bolster his solidarity.
“The issues are more important, imnsho, and I have never seen the Guild so united as it is now,” he wrote, later concluding his post: “It could be a long fight, but with you on our side, we cannot lose.”