Game of Thrones showrunner David Benioff has confirmed rumors that the series is nearing the end of its ride, and the final two seasons will be shorter than usual.
Speaking to Deadline after Sunday’s stellar season 6 finale, Benioff revealed that the plan has always been for the full series to run “in 70-75 hours.” With 60 hours already completed, this means Game of Thrones has 10-15 left. However, Benioff adds, “call it 73 for now.”
He also shared these exciting remarks which perfectly explain why Game of Thrones is killing it in the storytelling department:
We’re trying to tell one cohesive story with a beginning, middle and end. As Dan said, we’ve known the end for quite some time and we’re hurtling towards it. Those last images from the show that aired last night showed that. Daenerys is finally coming back to Westeros; Jon Snow is king of the North and Cersei is sitting on the Iron Throne. And we know the Night King is up there, waiting for all of them. The pieces are on the board now. Some of the pieces have been removed from the board and we are heading toward the end game.
The thing that has excited us from the beginning, back to the way we pitched it to HBO is, it’s not supposed to be an ongoing show, where every season it’s trying to figure out new story lines. We wanted it to be one giant story, without padding it out to add an extra 10 hours, or because people are still watching it. We wanted to something where, if people watched it end to end, it would make sense as one continuous story. We’re definitely heading into the end game now.
HBO has yet to officially confirm the length of seasons 7 and 8. Since at least one of them will be shortened, it’ll be interesting to see if the premiere dates shift further into the summer or hang on to late spring.
It’s tough to accept that the end is nigh, but given the popularity of Thrones, we wouldn’t be surprised if HBO attempted a spinoff of some sort. In fact, Martin has said another one of his books has been considered by HBO for a new series.