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'House of the Dragon': What we know

Emma D’Arcy stars as Princess Rhaenyra Targaryen in HBO Max’s upcoming series “House of the Dragon.” Photo courtesy of HBO Max

Aug. 16 (UPI) — House of the Dragon is set to add a new dimension to HBO’s wildly successful Game of Thrones universe, giving a backstory to the notorious House Targaryen.

The show, which recently had its official trailer debut at San Diego Comic-Con, was created by co-showrunners Ryan J. Condal and Miguel Sapochnik, who have said that the series will be highly based off of the lore of Game of Thrones.

House of the Dragon is one of a number of planned spinoffs from the Game of Thrones universe, both of which are themselves adaptations of George R.R. Martin’s novel series A Song of Fire and Ice.

Here is everything to know about House of the Dragon, which will premiere Sunday on HBO Max.

Plot

Given the media frenzy surrounding the show, exact plot details remain a closely guarded secret, and the logline from HBO simply says that the series “tells the story of House Targaryen.”

From the trailer, it can be gathered that much of the plot will revolve around infighting between Prince Daemon Targaryen (Matt Smith), the original heir to the Iron Throne of Westeros, who attempts to stop Princess Rhaenyra Targaryen (Emma D’Arcy) from taking his place.

“A woman would not inherit the Iron Throne, because that is the order of things,” Rhaenyra Targaryen is told in the trailer.

“When I am queen I will create a new order,” she replies in a voiceover. “Now they see you as you are.”

Further plot points remain to be seen. However, Sapochnik has previously said of the series, “I feel incredibly loyal and responsible to the original show.”

Characters

House of the Dragon features a number of well-known actors who are making their way to the fantasy world.

Veteran actor Paddy Considine takes the starring role as King Viserys Targaryen, the ruler of Westeros, whom HBO describes as “a warm, kind, and decent man” looking to take over the legacy of his grandfather.

His heir to the kingdom is Dr. Who’s Matt Smith, playing the role of Prince Daemon Targaryen. He is the king’s younger brother, and a “peerless warrior and a dragonrider” who will do whatever it takes to end up on the Iron Throne.

Standing in Daemon’s way, though, is his niece, Princess Rhaenyra Targaryen (Emma D’Arcy, in their first major Hollywood role), who, as the king’s firstborn child, would have been first in line to the throne had she not been a woman — a fact that seems to greatly trouble her.

The primary cast will be rounded out by a slate of talent including Olivia Cooke (Ready Player One), Steve Toussaint (Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time), Rhys Ifans (Spider-Man: No Way Home) and Eve Best (Nurse Jackie).

Prequel

It has been confirmed that House of the Dragon will serve as a prequel, taking place 200 years before the events of Game of Thrones.

The series will serve to set in motion some of the critical circumstances that can be seen throughout Game of Thrones’ eight seasons.

The showrunners said in a recent behind-the-scenes feature that they worked closely with George R.R. Martin, who served as an executive producer, in order to make sure the two storylines meshed.

“It’s great to have Ryan [J. Condal], a great writer and someone who really knew my work,” Martin said. “He’s going to do his best to remain faithful to it.”

Sapochnik had also worked previously on Game of Thrones, directing a number of that show’s episodes.

Martin added that he was in “good hands” with the pair helming the upcoming show.

Upcoming ‘GOT’ shows in development

The Game of Thrones universe is also slated to continue beyond House of the Dragon with additional shows on HBO.

The other planned spinoffs, per George R.R. Martin himself, include a series based on the popular Jon Snow character from the original show.

The spinoff, preliminarily titled Snow, is already in development.

In a recent blog post on his website, Martin also confirmed that a number of other spinoffs are also being worked on.

“Word got out about three of them some time ago,” Martin wrote. “Ten Thousand Ships, the Nymeria show, helmed by Amanda Segel. Sea Snake, aka Nine Voyages, with Bruno Heller,” Martin said. “And the Dunk & Egg show, The Hedge Knight or Knight of the Seven Kingdoms, with Steve Conrad writing.”

“I think some of these were officially announced; in other cases, news leaked out,” he added.





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