Game of Thrones only just returned to the airwaves for Season 7, but showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss are already signed on for their next TV shows. The duo is developing an original series that will keep them working with HBO for the foreseeable future, although the story will be quite different from Game of Thrones. The new series will be called Confederate.
Confederate will tell the history of the United States in an alternate timeline. In this timeline, the southern states successfully seceded from the Union in the first Civil War, and slavery has remained legal every since. In fact, slavery is a modern institution that has evolved with the changing times. The show will follow characters on both sides of the Mason-Dixon Demilitarized Zone as the Third American Civil War breaks out. We'll see the events through the eyes of the executives of a slave-holding conglomeration (and the families of people under their control), as well as journalists, abolitionists, slave hunters, freedom fighters, and politicians.
David Benioff and D.B. Weiss are on board as writers, executive producers, and showrunners for Confederate. They'll be joined as executive producers and writers by Nichelle Tramble Spellman of Justified and The Good Wife and Malcolm Spellman of Empire. Carolyn Strauss and Bernadette Caulfield of Game of Thrones will executive produce as well.
Fortunately, fans don't need to worry that David Benioff and D.B. Weiss will neglect Game of Thrones for the eighth and final season. Production on Confederate won't begin until the last season of Thrones has been completed. If anything, Confederate with Benioff and Weiss in such prominent production roles may explain why neither is attached to work on any of the Game of Thrones spinoffs that are currently in development at HBO.
Interestingly, Confederate has been a project that David Benioff and D.B. Weiss have been discussing for many years, and their original concept was for a feature film. Their work with HBO for Game of Thrones changed their minds, however, and they've decided to build their brand new world on television rather than in film. We won't get any dragons or ice zombies, and there will hopefully be less incest, but it sounds like Confederate will be similar to Thrones insofar as both shows visually built an entire culture and universe unlike anything else on the small screen.
Given that we technically don't yet know if Game of Thrones will debut in 2018 or be pushed back to 2019, we can't say when production on Confederate will kick off. Luckily, the Game of Thrones action seems like it will be more than enough to preoccupy us for the next couple of years without getting impatient for a new David Benioff/D.B. Weiss project. You can catch new episodes of Game of Thrones Season 7 on Sundays at 9 p.m. ET on HBO. If you missed last Sunday's Season 7 premiere, our breakdown of all the biggest moments can help you catch up.