HBO’s Game of Thrones has always been a cinematic tale, but in the series’ final season, the budget is really starting to match the ambition. By the time Season 8 hits, it’ll make for some of the most expensive television ever produced.
Variety reports the final season of Game of Thrones will cost $15 million per episode to produce, meaning the six episode run will cost around $60+ million total to produce. Put simply, that’s a whole lot of scratch for six episodes of television (though, admittedly, those final episodes will likely run around 80+ minutes each). HBO is wanting to blow this thing out of the park to wrap up George R.R. Martin’s ambitious saga, and though we don’t know which way the story will go, the creative team should certainly have the cash on hand to bring that vision to life.
For the sake of comparison, Lost’s pilot is considered one of the most ambitious and expensive hours of television ever produced, and it only clocked in at around $12 million. Stranger Things Season 2 is hitting at $8 million per episode, and the typical high-end drama costs around $5-7 million. Game of Thrones is looking to double that, and for a show that already looks great, it’ll be amazing to see what that extra cash manages to put on screen. We’re thinking dragons for days, y’all.
No word on when we’ll actually get to see the new season, and it’s possible the network may string it out all the way to late 2018 or even 2019, to allow additional production time. It’s obviously not ideal to have a year-and-a-half gap between seasons, but most fans will almost certainly wait if it means Thrones will manage to stick the landing.