Here’s something that’s not coming: HBO’s in-the-works Game of Thrones prequel spinoff from Jane Goldman.
TVLine has confirmed that the cabler has opted not to move forward with Naomi Watts-headlined project. According to sources, HBO execs screened the pilot over the summer and were not thrilled with the results. Instead of passing, however, they sent Goldman and Co. back into the editing room to make a slew of changes. But the revamped pilot failed to impress the execs either, leading them to pull the plug altogether.
UPDATE 11/1: HBO is now officially confirming the news, telling TVLine in a statement, “After careful consideration, we have decided not to move forward to series with the Untitled Game of Thrones prequel. We thank Jane Goldman, S.J. Clarkson, and the talented cast and crew for all of their hard work and dedication.”
HBO ordered a pilot for the untitled prequel last month, with the action set thousands of years before the events of Game of Thrones. Per the official logline, “the series chronicles the world’s descent from the golden Age of Heroes into its darkest hour. And only one thing is for sure: from the horrifying secrets of Westeros’ history to the true origin of the white walkers, the mysteries of the East to the Starks of legend… it’s not the story we think we know.”
Goldman (X-Men: First Class) penned the pilot and served as EP/showrunner. Author/GOT co-EP George R.R. Martin also served as an EP.
According to multiple insiders, the pilot was “troubled” from the start, marred by budget overruns, numerous personnel issues and myriad creative differences.
Meanwhile, HBO is expected to move forward with another Game of Thrones prequel project, this one that would trace the glory days of House Targaryen. The project has earned an official pilot order at HBO. The spinoff is co-created by GoT book author George R.R. Martin and Colony creator Ryan J. Condal, and is set 300 years before the original Thrones series, chronicling “the beginning of the end for House Targaryen.” Martin’s companion book Fire & Blood serves as a template for the new series.
The new project is actually a reworking of the rejected spinoff concept from Game of Thrones writer Bryan Cogman, which officially got the axe back in April. (Cogman is now serving as a consultant on Amazon’s upcoming Lord of the Rings adaptation.)