It’s been a long wait (23 years for fans of the novels), but the saga of Westeros is finally coming to a conclusion in the final season of Game of Thrones, which arrives this year. Right now, we know that the first episode of the hugely anticipated run will air on a Sunday in April, but we’ll soon know which Sunday it’ll be with us.
HBO chose to announce the information during a strange fake text message exchange, which you can check out in the gallery below. As you can see, the information will be doled out just before the third season of True Detective begins, though given that they probably won’t just flash a date on screen, I think it’s likely that we’ll also get a new trailer for the season.
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The word from cast and crew is that they’ve really pulled out all the stops for the finale, and they’ve boosted the budget for each episode from $10m to $15m, so I’m betting it’s going to be a humdinger of a preview. Whatever footage they show will also answer a couple of lingering fan questions about what could happen in the series (and, naturally, ask a whole bunch of new ones).
In any case, HBO Chief Richard Plepler certainly seems excited. He’s seen a workprint of the final season and explained to Variety the following:
“It’s a spectacle. The guys have done six movies. The reaction I had while watching them was, ‘I’m watching a movie. They knew the bar was high. They’ve exceeded the bar. I’ve watched them twice without any CGI and I’m in awe. Everybody’s in for an extraordinary treat of storytelling and of magical, magical production.”
In addition to the larger budget, one of the directors has also confirmed that the episodes will be longer than usual, allowing the creators the space to tell the story they want with the rhythms and pacing they choose. That certainly sounds promising, and we’ll be sure to let you know as soon as the Game of Thrones premiere date is announced later this weekend, so stay tuned.