HBO recently started filming on their still-untitled Game of Thrones prequel series, with author George R.R. Martin revealing five new facts about the show, starring Naomi Watts.
Production is currently under way in Northern Ireland, with Game of Thrones author George R.R. Martin shedding some new light on the show in an interview with EW.
The author/producer had previously revealed the prequel series is set roughly 5,000 years before the events of his books and the original series, but now he adds just how different this ancient version of Westeros will be.
In both Martin’s books and the original series, the expansive land of Westeros was divided up into Seven Kingdoms, who are each (in theory) ruled by whoever sits on the Iron Throne in King’s Landing.
Martin’s first big revelation is that in this series, there are roughly 100 kingdoms within the borders of Westeros.
‘We talk about the Seven Kingdoms of Westeros; there were Seven Kingdoms at the time of Aegon’s Conquest,’ Martin begins.
‘But if you go back further then there are nine kingdoms, and 12 kingdoms, and eventually you get back to where there are a hundred kingdoms — petty kingdoms — and that’s the era we’re talking about here,’ he added.
While Westeros with just seven kingdoms was certainly chaotic, this land with 100 kingdoms can likely be compared to the Wild West(eros) by comparison.
Martin also confirmed that members of the Stark family will be present in the series, which comes as little surprise to longtime fans who know that the Starks descended from the First Men.
‘The Starks will definitely be there,’ Martin said, while adding that the family’s iconic pets, the direwolves, will also be part of the story.
”Obviously the White Walkers are here — or as they’re called in my books, The Others — and that will be an aspect of it,’ Martin says. ‘There are things like direwolves and mammoths.’
While the Stark family will be there, the series pre-dates the Lannister family’s reign, but he added that their home of Casterly Rock will be occupied by the Casterly family from which it was first named.
‘The Lannisters aren’t there yet, but Castlery Rock is certainly there; it’s like the Rock of Gibraltar,” he says. “It’s actually occupied by the Casterlys — for whom it’s still named after in the time of Game of Thrones.’
The Casterly family was supposedly swindled out of their home by Lann the Clever, founder of House Lannister, but whether or not this tale will be told in the prequel is unclear.
Martin also added that Naomi Watts isn’t exactly the ‘lead’ of the show, since it is a true ensemble, with a cast that includes Naomi Ackie and Denise Gough.
‘As you know for Game of Thrones, we never even nominated anybody for lead actress or lead actor [during awards season] until recently; it was always for supporting [categories] because the show is such an ensemble,’ Martin said.
‘I think that will be true for this show too. We don’t have leads so much as a large ensemble cast,’ he added.
As for the show’s title, Martin has suggested the title The Long Night in the past, though it is still untitled.