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SYFY WIRE Game of Thrones

George R.R. Martin knows what we want in that Game of Thrones spinoff - and it’s dragons: ‘Like 17 of them’

By Benjamin Bullard
House of the Dragon GoT

Do you like dragons? Do you also like Game of Thrones? If you can truthfully answer “yes” to both of those totally reasonable questions (and who wouldn’t?), then get your popcorn ready…because does Thrones creator George R.R. Martin ever have the show for you.

Since the day it was announced by HBO, Game of Thrones prequel series House of the Dragon has beckoned eager fans with, shall we say, an overtly reptilian promise of more flame-breathed action to sweep over its familiar Westeros setting. But in case anyone thought the series’ name is just a vague metaphor, Martin appears to be teasing that it’s anything but. 

If Thrones’ three named dragons (and their controlling, power-crazed mother) weren’t enough, get ready for dragons in the double digits when House of the Dragon debuts at HBO. Speaking recently on The Stuff Dreams Are Made Of podcast, Martin confessed that he’s really gotten behind the whole idea that the new series’ fire-spewing lizards should each have its own distinct personality — and, of course, that there should be an abundance of 'em.

“[O]f course I’m looking forward to the dragons. Obviously, I love the dragons,” said Martin. “And we had three of them in Game of Thrones… but now we have, like 17 of them. And, hopefully, they’ll each have their own personalities; they’ll be instantly recognizable when you see them — the colors and all of that —  because the dragons do have personalities in the books, and it’ll be great to see that come alive, and the dragonriders.”

On top of all the gout-of-fire good stuff Martin’s teasing, HBO also has just revealed six new additions to the House of the Dragon cast. Joining the fiery fray, via TV Line, will be Ryan Corr (Wakefield) as Ser Harwin “Breakbones” Strong, Jefferson Hall (Devs) as both Lord Jason Lannister and Tyland Lannister, David Horovitch (Doctors) as Grand Maester Mellos, Matthew Needham (Sandition) as Larys Strong, Bill Paterson (Fleabag) as Lord Lyman Beesbury, and Gavin Spokes (Will) as Lord Lyonel Strong. 

They’ll be joining a previously-announced ensemble cast that includes, well, at least 17 dragons — plus Matt Smith (Doctor Who) as Prince Daemon Targaryen, Paddy Considine (The Outsiders) as King Viserys, Emma D’Arcy (Truth Seekers) as Rhaenyra Targaryen, Rhys Ifans (Harry Potter) as Otto Hightower, Olivia Cooke (Ready Player One) as Alicent Hightower, Steve Toussaint (Judge Dredd) as Lord Corlys Velaryon (aka “The Sea Snake”), and Graham McTavish (Outlander) as Ser Harrold Westerling.

Set 300 years before the events of the main Game of Thrones series, House of the Dragon is based on Martin’s 2018 Fire & Blood. Written as a fictional history chronicling the ruling lineage of Westeros, Fire & Blood delves into the deeper origins of House Targaryen, the dragon-centric ancestors of Daenerys (Emilia Clarke) from the main GoT series. HBO hasn’t revealed a release date yet, but has teased House of the Dragon for a 2022 premiere.