Game of Thrones Season 8: Release date, spoilers, latest news and trailers
Already itching for Game of Thrones Season 8? So are we. Here’s everything you need to know about the next Game of Thrones series, including confirmed details on the 2019 Game of Thrones season 8 release date, cast, plot, trailers, plus the latest leaks, spoilers, fan theories, and predictions as HBO confirms the finale will feature multiple major character deaths.
Beware – here lie spoilers! If you’re not completely up to date with the show – or you don’t want to find out details about the final season of Game of Thrones, however speculative – then read no further. You have been warned.
With the latest season of Thrones behind us, we’ve now got nothing but The Long Night ahead of us. Winter is finally here, and it’ll be many more cold months before our TV screens are graced with fan favourites like Jon Snow, Daenerys Targaryen, and Tyrion Lannister again.
The good news is that hype for the show is now bigger than ever, which means you can be sure that HBO will be spending top dollar to guarantee a quality season. HBO has committed to giving the producers the time they need to develop a quality final season, so we’ve got high hopes for what’s coming.
In the meantime, read on for all the latest Game of Thrones season 8 spoilers, news and rumours – bearing in mind our above warning about spoilers being below!
These include speculation that Tyrion Lannister could join Jon Snow and Daenerys as the ‘third head’ of the Targaryen dragon; the latest from Arya Stark actor Maisie Williams, who just let slip the Game of Thrones season 8 release date; and news out of the INTV Conference in Israel where a leading HBO exec confirmed something we were all dreading (but secretly knew would happen).
Plus, a fan theory so good it might just have spoiled ALL of Game of Thrones season 8 for the internet, an allegedly leaked on-set photo that might just reveal season 8’s biggest surprise of all, and new details of the big Game of Thrones season 8 battle at Winterfell.
Credit: Game of Thrones / HBO
Game of Thrones season 8 spoiler alert? Tyrion Lannister could secretly be a Targaryen!
We’ve got the Emmys to thank for our latest Game of Thrones gossip. When collecting the award for ‘Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series’, Tyrion Lannister actor Peter Dinklage gave a shout out to co-star Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, aka Jamie Lannister, calling him his “brother from another mother”.
This wasn’t taken lightly, with fans jumping on the quip as proof that Tyrion is actually a Targaryen. Throne-heads will know that, earlier in the series, Daenerys Targaryen revealed that her family’s “dragon has three heads”, which many thought was a coded reference to the three remaining Targaryens.
Daenerys is obviously one, and as of season seven we know that Jon Snow is another – could Tyrion be the third? Dinklage later clarified that his shout out to Coster-Waldau simply used a ‘turn of phrase’, but this is Game of Thrones and we’ve seen far stranger things happen!
Game of Thrones Season 8 Release Date: When does the next series of Game of Thrones come out?
Bad news, denizens of Westeros! HBO has confirmed that Game of Thrones season 8 won’t come out until 2019 – though the leaks are coming thick and fast.
In fact, we can now pinpoint when in 2019 Game of Thrones season 8 will air, thanks to Arya Stark actor Maisie Williams, who told the Metro:
“We wrap in December and we air our first episode in April . That’s a four-month turnaround for these huge episodes. There’s a lot that goes into the final edit. You would not want to rush this season at all.”
Yes, the show is currently slated to return in early-2019, and prior to Williams’ revelation, the Hollywood Reporter cited insider sources as saying that production could run as late as August 2018 (filming is understood to have started in October 2017).
Sansa Stark actor Sophie Turner also seemingly confirmed a 2019 release date for Game of Thrones season 8 when she was speaking to Variety:
“I’m really excited. Game of Thrones comes out in 2019. [X-Men:] Dark Phoenix is in November. Then I have a couple indie movies coming out. I’m a producer on my next movie [Girl Who Fell From the Sky]. So I’m really excited about the future,” she said.
Turner added of the show’s production schedule: “We started in October, so we’re maybe like a tenth of the way through. [Laughs.] No, no, we’ve got six or seven months left.”
First Game of Thrones season 8 trailer revealed
Whisper it softly, Westeros addicts, but the first Game of Thrones season 8 trailer has been revealed ahead of the show’s eagerly anticipated 2019 release date – well, sort of.
Premium US TV network HBO has given us a tiny sneak peek at the final season of Game of Thrones, unveiling the first teaser for its 2019 line-up of returning shows.
Somewhat predictably, the fleeting look at Game of Thrones season 8 has caused the biggest stir on the internet, even though the new footage runs to under five seconds. It shows Kit Harrington’s Jon Snow embracing sister Sansa Stark (played by Sophie Turned) at Winterfell, though the pair’s latest reunion looks far from happy.
A number of GoT fans have highlighted the distant gaze in Sansa’s eyes, which some are interpreting as a sign of discord between the two.
All in all, the footage of HBO’s 2019 shows runs to just one minute and 40 seconds, with hits like Big Little Lies (entering season 2), True Detective (season 3), and Veep (season 7) also featuring.
Have a watch and see what you think
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Game of Thrones season 8 is scheduled to land in April 2019 in the form of six feature-length episodes, after which it’s farewell to Westeros as we know it – but not for good, as no less than five GoT spin-off shows are planned. More on that later!
Game of Thrones Season 8 Latest News: Battle of Winterfell’s epic 55-nights of filming revealed
Game of Thrones know a thing or two about putting on a battle scene, but according to GoT fan blog Watchers on the Wall, we ain’t seen nothing yet.
Remember the Battle of the Bastards? It instantly went down as one of the entertainment world’s all-time greatest fight scenes, but guess what? It took less than half the time to shoot as season 8’s incoming battle at Winterfell!
We now know (or are at least pretty sure we know) this thanks to an Instagram post by Jonathan Quinlan, a Game of Thrones assistant director, who went social with a heartfelt thank you note from ‘The Producer Types’ to the wider crew members.
It reveals revealed that the Game of Thrones season 8 shoot for the battle of Winterfall lasted for 55 consecutive nights. To put that into context, Battle of the Bastards clocked in at 25 nights, so we’re tempted to believe GoT’s Producer Types when they say we’ll be watching “something that’s never been done before” when season 8 gets underway.
Game of Thrones Season 8 Latest News: Jon Snow to kill Daenerys in final episode bloodbath?
Multiple news outlets, including Variety, are reporting that the final episode of Game of Thrones season 8 will see the show’s main characters fall to their deaths “one by one.”
During the ‘Best of HBO’ panel at the INTV conference, HBO senior VP of drama Francesca Orsi told those assembled that the table read of the season 8 finale was a “really powerful moment in our lives and our careers” that saw the cast cry as they learned the fate of their respective characters.
“None of the cast had received the scripts prior, and one by one they started to fall down to their deaths. By the end, the last few words on the final script, the tears just started falling down. Then there was applause that lasted 15 minutes.”
Orsi didn’t reveal who dies, of course, but the internet has plenty of ideas…and so might HBO’s more rank-and-file employees.
A photo leaked to The Express seemingly depicts Jon Snow (Kit Harrington) and Daenerys Targaryen (Emilia Clarke) on the brink of another passionate (if slightly incestuous) moment – but according to the site, there’s a MAJOR twist.
It says an alleged HBO employee told them: “Jon and Dany were kissing, but then Jon takes a step back and shoves his sword through Dany’s heart. This is how Azor Ahai is reborn.”
Credit: Game of Thrones / HBO (via The Express)
On the one hand, this would make sense, as in Throne-lore, the first Azor Ahai plunged his sword through the heart of his wife Nissa Nissa. However, it’s worth mentioning that this rumour hasn’t been reported let alone corroborated anywhere else, and The Express isn’t an overly reputable source of entertainment news.
However, it does seem fans will get a shock or two in the final season, as another two Game of Thrones actors – Maisie Williams (Arya Stark) and Iain Glen (Ser Jorah Mormont) – also appear to have confirmed a dramatic conclusion to the fantasy series.
Speaking to Radio Times, Williams said that the ending would likely be a divisive one.
“It’s either going to be everything that everyone dreamed of, or it’s gonna be disappointing. It depends which side of the fence you’re going to sit on. I think no matter what you do there’s definitely going to be that divide. It depends on what people want from the final season. I love it, but I don’t know.”
Similarly, Glen told IANS:
Yes, I hope. I can’t tell, but I am one of the few people who has read the script and I know the ending and what happens. When I read it, I thought it was rather brilliant. I am a bit of a fan of the series as well, and it satiated my expectation and hopes, I felt (it was the) conclusion… But we will just have to see. You know with something this big like Game of Thrones, you cannot please everyone.
Game of Thrones Prequels: Is season 8 really the end of Game of Thrones?
Yes and no.
Only one of the five commissioned Game of Thrones spin-off series’ will actually make it to the screens, the president of HBO has confirmed.
The unofficially-named ‘Golden Age of Heroes’ prequel from Jane Goldman is in active development with the pilot scheduled to begin shooting at the start of 2019. However, there are “no plans to make any others at this point,” according to Casey Bloys, who is the head of programming at the prestigious US network.
Bloys explained it commissioned many ideas for development with the idea of finding one exciting project to move forward with. He added (via Indiewire): “The reason we did multiple scripts, in the development process, [we knew] out of five we’d be lucky to get one we’re excited about.”
The story, which has been written by Jane Goldman and GoT author George R.R. Martin, is set thousands of years before the events of A Song Of Fire And Ice.
Earlier this year HBO revealed the prequel show “chronicles the world’s descent from the golden Age of Heroes into its darkest hour. And only one thing is for sure: from the horrifying secrets of Westeros’s history to the true origin of the white walkers, the mysteries of the East to the Starks of legend… it’s not the story we think we know.”
Speaking of Game of Thrones, Bloys says the final series will likely air in the first half of 2019, but the network hasn’t set on a date just yet. At least if it is, the company isn’t telling.
Elsewhere, Bloys also made reference to the noteworthy comments from WarnerMedia’s CEO John Starkey, who had suggested HBO needed to increase the volume of programming available on the network to compete with Netflix.
Bloys added: “There are no plans to dilute the HBO brand in favor of volume of programming. No one has asked us to not do what we do which is curate excellence.”
Now, read on for all the best Game of Thrones season 8 fan theories – here are the most concrete revelations so far.
Game of Thrones Season 8 Spoilers: Do these fan theories predict all of season 8’s deaths?
A succinct fan theory has gained some traction over on reddit, where user JackStargaryen has offered their theory on why Sansa’s time is running out.
Apparently, it’s all the Stark family’s wolves.
“Arya named her Direwolf Nymeria who is now a wild Direwolf like how Arya is wild and like Nymeria Arya may lead her own pack someday. Sansa’s Direwolf is named Lady who of course symbolises Sansa being a Lady but the fact the Direwolf died could mean Sansa will die.”
“There has been some Forshadowing for this, In Season 5 Sansa tells Ramsey to just kill her already I can’t remember what she said exactly but it was something like that also in Season 7 when she tells Arya that she has men loyal to her Arya replies that they are not here right now which could mean nobody will be there to protect her.”
Another new fan theory enjoying some serious steam over on the same forum comes from user thetripleb, who captured our imagination with a series of elaborate season 8 death predictions.
Needless to say, these haven’t been confirmed (other than the recent news that Game of Thrones, in true Game of Thrones fashion, will kill off a number of major players), but they certainly make sense – and if they do they prove to be true, expect the internet to explode when Game of Thrones comes out next year (more on that below), as some much loved characters could be destined for a one-way flight to the great Iron Throne in the sky.
Ready? Here’s how it goes.
I think that Jaime will convince at least a contingent, if not the entire Lannister Army to join him in going North.
The combined armies go north and fight the army of the dead, defeating it but at great cost. However, the Night King and his dragon are not there. Why?
They flew south and destroy King’s Landing, trading his army of 100,000 for the 1,000,000 in King’s Landing including Cersei. They foreshadowed it too much in the last episode.
Euron and the Golden Company arrive at King’s Landing to a trap, where they are also killed and join the Night’s King army.
Dany finds out she’s pregnant
Bran and Sam keep Jon’s parentage a secret after Dany and Jon declare they are getting married, or they at least tell Jon who doesn’t have a chance to tell Dany before the end.
Jamie ends up at the end killing Cersei to fulfill the prophecy in the last battle. He survives to become the 1000th Lord Commander and restore the wall and honor to the Night’s Watch
Bronn survives and gets The Twins when it’s all over, as Tyrion is good to his word to double what he is being paid (1 castle)
The Hound survives and stays with Tyrion, who retires as Hand of the Queen and goes back to Casterly Rock as it’s Lord. He changes the Lannister’s wealth from gold to wine, as he opens his vinyard there and becomes rich by supplying the 7 Kingdoms. Remember there’s always a Clegane to help a Lannister, so The Hound goes with him.
Cleganbowl never happens because they hate us
Gendry survives and is legitamized by Jon/Dany
Bittersweat ending is that Dany gives birth to a child, maybe even twins, but dies in childbirth or shortly after. Jon becomes King of the 7 kingdoms, but loses another love of his life and raises his children/child
In the battles, all the dragons die. However, in some last scene it’s discovered that they laid eggs before the last battle.
Pretty expansive, right? Read on to find out when we’ll know if thetripleb’s wholly plausible crystal ball gazing turns out to be accurate.
Credit: Game of Thrones / HBO
Game of Thrones Season 8 Episodes: How many episodes will there be?
Until recently, all Game of Thrones seasons were 10 episodes strong. But the most recent run – season seven – came with just seven episodes in tow.
Unfortunately, season eight will have even fewer, with viewers promised a grand total of just six episodes for the final season. It’s likely, however, that at least some of these episodes will be longer than a typical 48-minute airing – expect high-budget, feature-length goodness.
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The Hollywood Reporter writes: “Game of Thrones showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss have all six episodes mapped out and are working in tandem with the production team to determine a schedule that makes sense for the sweeping fantasy drama and its sprawling cast.”
The first episode will be written by Dave Hill; the second episode will be penned by Bryan Cogman; and showrunners Benioff and Weiss will divide up the remaining four. Importantly, Thrones author George R.R. Martin won’t be scripting an episode this season, breaking tradition.
Game of Thrones Season 8: Is this really the final season?
Yes, Game of Thrones season eight is absolutely the last season. The TV series is based on a (currently incomplete) series of books, and so has a definitive ending that was determined long ago and already shared with the Thrones series showrunners.
However, the good news is that HBO is currently looking into five potential “successor shows”, which could be prequels, sequels, or current timeline spin-offs. Stay tuned.
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Game of Thrones Season 8 Plot: What’s next for the story?
The story so far
Here are some key events from where we left off in season seven:
- The Night King has resurrected a fallen dragon and used it to breach the Wall. He now leads an army of White Walkers into Westeros.
- Against her brothers’ advice, Queen Cersei Lannister has opted to betray Jon Snow and Daenerys Targaryen, and leave the northern armies to fend for themselves against the army of the dead.
- Jaime Lannister, unhappy with Cersei’s decision to withdraw her help in the fight against the undead, has left Cersei and now heads north to honour his pledge to give aid against the Night King.
- Daenerys Targaryen is now one dragon short – thanks to epic spear-tossing from the Night King – but has gained a sultry paramour in the form of Jon Snow. Little do either of them know that Jon is actually a Targaryen, because he’s the son of her late brother Rhaegar. Yes, Jon is sleeping with Auntie Daenerys.
- An eternal black sheep of Westeros, Theon Greyjoy now hopes to regain his honour by rescuing his sister Yara, who is currently held by prisoner by their uncle Euron. The bad news is that Euron Greyjoy is in league with Cersei, and together are brokering a deal with the Golden Company to destroy the enemies of House Lannister once and for all.
- In the North, sisters Arya and Sansa Stark have finally put an end to Littlefinger’s meddling – by murdering him at Winterfell, naturally. They cottoned onto his scheming courtesy of their brother Bran Stark‘s visions, which allow him to see into the past and uncover lost truths. His most recent vision? Revealing the marriage of Rhaegar Targaryen and Lyanna Stark, confirming Jon Snow (or Aegon Targaryen, by birth) as the rightful Targaryen heir to the Iron Throne.
What’s coming next
So what’s happening next season? Well, no plot details have leaked thus far, so it’s tough to say. What makes it even more difficult is that season eight is based on an outline of the two final novels in George R. R. Martin’s series, A Song of Ice and Fire – neither of which have been published yet.
The most significant thing we’ve heard so far was from HBO President of Programming Casey Bloys, who recently revealed an interesting tidbit about Game of Thrones season 8 while speaking at a US university.
According to Bloys, the final series of Game of Thrones will shoot multiple endings in a bid to thwart hackers. HBO, as you may be aware, suffered a number of high-profile leaks during season 7.
I know in Game of Thrones, the ending, they’re going to shoot multiple versions so that nobody really knows what happens. You have to do that on a long show. When you’re shooting, people know. So they’re going to shoot multiple versions so that there’s no real definitive answer until the end.
That’s great news for those of us who hate spoilers.
In any case, we’ll update this section once we hear more.
Game of Thrones Season 8 Cast: New cast members for GoT season 8
The following cast members have been confirmed as returning starring and guest-starring cast:
- Peter Dinklage as Tyrion Lannister
- Nikolaj Coster-Waldau as Ser Jaime Lannister
- Lena Headey as Queen Cersei Lannister
- Emilia Clarke as Queen Daenerys Targaryen
- Kit Harington as Lord Jon Snow
- Liam Cunningham as Ser Davos Seaworth
- Sophie Turner as Lady Sansa Stark
- Maisie Williams as Arya Stark
- John Bardley as Samwell Tarly
- Isaac Hempstead-Wright as Bran Stark
- Rory McCann as Sandor Clegane
- Pilou Asbaek as King Euron Greyjoy
- Mark Gatiss as Tycho Nestoris
And in September 2017, it emerged that Game of Thrones producers were casting for two child actors. One role is described as “Northern Girl”, and is expected to be filled by someone aged between eight and 10. The second role is for a boy aged eight to 12 with a “fit and agile look”, according to Thrones site Watchers on the Wall.
Game of Thrones Season 8 Trailer: Watch trailers, teasers and clips here
We haven’t seen any trailers for the new season just yet, and that’s because production won’t be completed for many more months. However, we’ll update this section with trailers as soon as they arrive.
In the meantime, check out some of these quality YouTube videos to sate your hunger for Thrones:
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