Game of Thrones has regularly raised the bar in terms of a TV series' production value, surprising audiences with its immense scale. Fans can expect more of the same with the final six episodes of the series, with HBO chief Richard Plepler comparing the scale of each episode to an entire movie.
“It’s a spectacle. The guys have done six movies. The reaction I had while watching them was, ‘I’m watching a movie,’“ Plepler shared with Variety of what showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss have accomplished. “They knew the bar was high. They’ve exceeded the bar. I’ve watched them twice without any CGI and I’m in awe. Everybody’s in for an extraordinary treat of storytelling and of magical, magical production.”
Vanity Fair previously reported that each episode of the final season was budgeted around $15 million, an increase from previous seasons whose episodes typically cost around $10 million apiece. However, those estimates broke the episodes down by the full budget for each season, with various reports claiming that the budgets for each episode would fluctuate, depending on the necessary action being depicted.
In addition to the episodes being more costly, Game of Thrones director David Nutter previously confirmed that the episodes would last longer than 60 minutes, allowing for much more mayhem and surprises.
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There are countless theories circulating the internet trying to predict what will happen in the final season, with the director praising the accomplishments of the showrunners and the narrative's many twists.
"I’m completely satisfied with how season 8 ends," Nutter wrote. "I think that [the showrunners] did a tremendous job, and they took into consideration what the fans want, as well as what is right as far as storytelling is concerned. I guarantee there’s going to be lots of surprises and shocking moments, but it’s really very compelling stuff."
The secrecy surrounding the final episodes is taking its toll on those responsible for the series, with star Iain Glen claiming the producers are incredibly paranoid about anything being spoiled.
“They’re absolutely paranoid now about anyone finding out anything about the series and spoiling it,” Glen shared with the BBC. “We weren’t allowed a written word on a page. Everything was accessed through iPads with different security you had to get through to access it, which caused a problem for the actors, I have to say. But we found a way, either on phones or with pads…for it to be available on set.”
Game of Thrones returns in April.
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