Game of Thrones Prequel House of the Dragon Begins Production: See Photos of Matt Smith & Co. at Table Read

Here there be Dragon.

Game of Thrones‘ first spinoff, House of the Dragon, is officially in production, HBO announced Monday. In addition, the premium cabler offered the first (albeit sadly dragon-free) photo from the show: Its actors gathered for an in-person, socially distanced table read.

In an interview in February, HBO/HBO Max chief content officer Casey Bloys told TVLine that the sequel, which will focus on Daenerys Targaryen’s ancestors, would begin production this spring.

“They’re prepping,” Bloys said, adding that showrunners Miguel Sapochnik and Ryan J. Condal “have been writing for a long time” and have drafts of all 10 Season 1 episodes “in various stages.”

House of the Dragon is set 300 years before the original Thrones series and will follow Daenerys’ ancestors as House Targaryen begins its historic downfall. Thrones author George R.R. Martin and Condal (Colony) created the prequel; Sapochnik served as director on some of Thrones‘ biggest episodes.

The cast so far includes Matt Smith (Doctor Who) as Prince Daemon Targaryen, Paddy Considine (The Outsider) as King Viserys, Olivia Cooke (Bates Motel) as Alicent Hightower, Emma D’Arcy (Truth Seekers) as Princess Rhaenyra Targaryen, Sonoya Mizuno (Devs) as Prince Daemons’ unlikely ally Mysaria, Rhys Ifans (Notting Hill) as Hand of the King Otto Hightower, Steve Touissant (Berlin Station) as Lord Corlys Velaryon aka a legendary Westerosi seafarer known as The Sea Snake, Fabien Frankel (The Serpent) as the knight Ser Criston Cole and Eve Best (Nurse Jackie) as Lord Corlys’ wife Princess Rhaenys Velaryon.

In the photo below, you can see Toussaint, D’Arcy, Cooke, Considine and Smith. The show’s Twitter account also released individual photos of the actors at the reading (keep scrolling to see those).

What do you think, Thrones faithful? Excited about House of the Dragon? Sound off in the Comments!