When will House of the Dragon air?
HBO president Casey Bloys confirmed that the show is on track for a 2022 release date, according to Deadline. Production is underway - as revealed by the official Game of Thrones Twitter account:
The show has been ordered for a total of ten episodes - the same length of the first series of Game of Thrones. Variety also revealed that George RR Martin has signed a five-year deal to create content with HBO and HBO Max, so this could imply that House of the Dragon will run for at least that amount of time.
Who are the cast and crew?
Creator of the book series - George RR Martin - is developing the series with the creator of Colony, Ryan Condal, who will act as head writer and co-runner of the show.
Partnering with him is Miguel Sapochnik, who will also be directing the pilot episode and several others in the series. Sapochnik served as director for both Battle of the Bastards and Winds of Winter, two of the highest-rated Game of Thrones episodes overall.
The role of Viserys I will be played Paddy Considine, HBO has confirmed. The actor is best known for his work in The Outsider, The Death of Stalin, and Hot Fuzz. Viserys I plays a crucial role in Westeros, and the civil war that will no doubt be at the centre of House of the Dragon.
HBO has confirmed that Emma D’Arcy (known for Truth Seekers) will fill the role of Princess Rhaenyra Targaryen, Viserys's daughter and the eventual successor to the throne.
Matt Smith (known for Doctor Who) will play Daemon Targaryen, both Rhaenyra's husband and uncle - because we just can't seem to get away from incest in Game of Thrones, apparently.
Olivia Cooke (known for Ready Player One) will play Alicent Hightower, the daughter of the Hand of the King. She will complicate things greatly for the Targaryen line and their claims to the Iron Throne.
Variety has announced four new cast members: Steve Toussaint (known for Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time), Eve Best (known for Nurse Jackie), Rhys Ifans (known for Notting Hill) and Sonoya Mizuno (known for Devs).
Toussaint will play an extremely rich adventurer called Lord Corlys Velaryon, AKA 'The Sea Snake'. Best will play Princess Rhaenys Velaryon, the daughter of Prince Aemon Targaryen who has a rightful claim to the throne. Ifans will play her husband, Otto Hightower, the Hand of the King to Viserys Targaryen. Finally, Mizuno will play Mysaria, a dancer who goes on to become the paramour of Smith’s Prince Daemon Targaryen.
Finally, George RR Martin himself revealed on Twitter that Fabien Frankel will be joining the cast - best known from the BBC and Netflix drama, The Serpent.
He is the common-born son of the steward to the Lord of Blackhaven. FIRE & BLOOD readers him as Ser Criston Cole. HOUSE OF THE DRAGON viewers will know him as FABIEN FRANKEL. https://t.co/hnLdrf0myw pic.twitter.com/fuf6gIAzCr— George RR Martin (@GRRMspeaking) April 15, 2021
Frankel will play Ser Criston Cole, who is of Dornish descent and is the common-born son of the steward to the Lord of Blackhaven. The character has no claim to the throne or any titles, but is skilled with a sword and carries a great deal of honour.
What is the series about?
As the name suggests, House of the Dragon will be based all around House Targaryen, the line that Daenerys is from. It will draw from Martin’s book Fire & Blood - which contains enough material for various plot avenues to be explored.
The rumoured setting for House of the Dragon is 300 years before the events of Game of Thrones, around the time that Aegon Targaryen first invaded Westeros, declared himself King and kicked off the War of Conquest. The end of this war resulted in the formation of the seven kingdoms, and the Iron Throne being created.
Now that we have confirmation that both Rhaenyra Targaryen and Alicent Hightower will appear, we know that the show will delve into the Targaryen civil war, otherwise known as the 'Dance of the Dragons.' During this time, Westeros was split between the two figures and their own claims to the Iron Throne.
We don't know whether the show will only focus on this story, or whether it will be a segment in a bigger overarching plot.
We also suspect that we'll see appearances from other famous houses - such as the Starks, Lannisters, Baratheons and Tyrells. It’s unlikely that we’ll see any familiar faces from Game of Thrones appearing considering how early the show is going to be set - unless somehow the Night King manages to worm his way in.
Either way, Martin has confirmed that there will be dragons, which lots of fans will be pleased to hear about.
How can I watch House of the Dragon?
In the US, you’ll be able to watch on HBO and its various streaming services such as HBO Max. As with Game of Thrones, Sky has confirmed that UK viewers will get access via Sky Atlantic and Now. If for some reason you can’t access either of these channels, here’s how to watch HBO outside of the US.