The Game Of Thrones spinoffs won't be happening as soon as we expected, but that's not entirely a bad thing. HBO programming president Casey Bloys lays out the current situation for fans to inform us all on exactly how far along the process has gone since the announcement:
I wanted to make sure fans know this is a really embryonic process. I haven't even seen outlines. In the press at large, everybody said, 'there are four spinoffs' and they assume that means each one is happening and we're going to have a new Game of Thrones show per quarter. That's not what's going on. The idea is not to do four shows. The bar set by [Benioff and Weiss] is so high that my hope is to get one show that lives up to it. Also, this is a long-term plan.
Casey Bloys' words to EW were echoes of what George R.R. Martin told fans two weeks ago when he stated that the pilots were no guarantee that all five (Bloys may not know of Martin's fifth) projects would be greenlit. As Bloys says above, the bar set by Game Of Thrones is so high that it will be a task to find a show that can somehow measure up to its same greatness, and that's going to take some time. While it would be incredible if HBO were able to simultaneously strike gold with all pitched scripts and juggle four shows as massive as GOT, that kind of stuff doesn't just happen overnight. It'll undoubtedly take time, writing, pitching, and rewrites to finally nail down the idea that will become the follow up to Game Of Thrones.
So, why then, is HBO developing multiple pilots for a spinoff to Game Of Thrones if they aren't trying to make multiple shows? Casey Bloys states that this process allows the network to cast a wide net and increase their chances of finding an idea worthy of the Game Of Thrones franchise. Put simply, putting all their eggs into one basket/idea might force them to commit to something less than worthy or waste time going back to the drawing board. Having multiple writers on multiple projects ensures that whatever is going on behind the scenes is expedited and gets decisions made faster and production rolling. Even if things are in the early stages, it sounds like HBO is doing all the right things to ensure they get a winning idea sooner rather than later.
While the process seems set to be chugging along for HBO to bring on another series with a Game Of Thrones type of success, Casey Bloys also reminds audiences that the first priority of the network is to ensure they finish GOT in a satisfying manner:
Making Game of Thrones as good as possible is the No. 1 goal, and then we'll see about these scripts. You're not going to see a situation where the next show in the Thrones universe launches off the back of this one. The show that Dan and David have created will get its proper send off first. We wouldn't want to take away from that in any way.
Bloys' stance that HBO will worry about GOT first, and follow-ups later is more than valid, as we wouldn't be so crazy about a spinoff if the ending to the original show absolutely sucked, right? Casey Bloys also mentions that whatever comes next in the Game Of Thrones universe won't be a direct sequel to the ending of the series. The prequel concept is information we've shared in the past, but it's good to know that everyone involved is so intent on making each potential product a stand-alone series, even though they all exist in the same universe.
So, while it may be sad that the Game Of Thrones spinoffs aren't right around the corner, it's good to know everyone involved is approaching it in a logical way. Game Of Thrones returns with Season 7 July 16th at 9 p.m. ET on HBO. Keep track of its return date and other new shows via our summer premiere guide, and check the status for shows you'll love next season via our renewal guide.