Although best known for writing sprawling, endlessly detailed, and hauntingly hollow works of fiction about how he’s ever going to actually buckle down and finish The Winds Of Fucking Winter, George R.R. Martin has also developed quite a sideline as a TV producer over the years. Just recently, Martin announced that he was producing (with Kalinda Vazquez) an adaptation of Roger Zelazny’s Roadmarks, and his resumé also includes, obviously, Game Of Thrones, Syfy’s Nightflyers, and the million or so Game Of Thrones spin-offs currently in the works—most notably House Of The Dragon, set to arrive on HBO in 2022. Now the network has moved to continue that relationship, and thoughtfully fill Martin’s many (apparently) idle hours, signing a 5-year deal with the hypothetical author to continue making shows for them.
Per The Hollywood Reporter, the overall deal would give the network access to any shows Martin develops over the next five years, and would give Martin a Large Sack Of Money to the tune of what’s being reported as 8-figures. (Or, roughly, 1,000,000 of those little grey hats he likes.)
What Martin gets out of this is obvious. (See above, re: Hats.) HBO’s commitment, meanwhile, underlines its continued belief that it can generate the next Game Of Thrones out of, well, Game Of Thrones, blithely ignoring the ways that series’ cultural cachet kind of fell off a cliff the second it aired its finale back in 2019. Which isn’t a dig on Martin—he didn’t write the last season, after all, as he was reportedly too busy not writing The Fucking Winds Of Fucking Winter to have much to do with the series at that point—so much as it is an acknowledgement of how badly the network wants to believe that whatever hypnotic combination of violence, nudity, and children in peril that made GoT one of cable’s biggest-ever hits will still be operative when and wherever we return to Westeros at last.