If George R.R. Martin had his way, “Game of Thrones” would have continued for several years longer than it did.
That’s the revelation the author behind the HBO hit provides in a new interview with Fast Company (via Digital Spy), admitting that “it can be traumatic” when adapting a story for the screen that’s as dense and sprawling as A Song of Ice and Fire.
“Because sometimes their creative vision and your creative vision don’t match, and you get the famous creative differences thing — that leads to a lot of conflict,” Martin admits.
“You get totally extraneous things like the studio or the network weighing in,” he continues. “And they have some particular thing that has nothing to do with story, but relates to, ‘Well this character has a very high Q rating so let’s give him a lot more stuff to do.’” (A Q rating measures the audience’s familiarity and positive response to TV actors and their characters.)
As a result, he adds: “The [final] series has been not completely faithful. Otherwise, it would have to run another five seasons.”
Following the much-discussed “Game of Thrones” finale earlier this year, Martin took to his blog to explain that the final seasons of the series — which followed the plot of his yet-to-be published final two books in the series — won’t be identical to the novels.
“There are characters who never made it onto the screen at all, and others who died in the show but still live in the books,” Martin wrote. “So if nothing else, the readers will learn what happened to Jeyne Poole, Lady Stoneheart, Penny and her pig, Skahaz Shavepate, Arianne Martell, Darkstar, Victarion Greyjoy, Ser Garlan the Gallant, Aegon VI, and a myriad of other characters both great and small that viewers of the show never had the chance to meet.”
And what about that ending that left fans so divided? According to Martin, it will be the same… but different.
“How will it all end? I hear people asking,” he explains. “The same ending as the show? Different? Well… yes. And no. And yes. And no. And yes. And no. And yes. I am working in a very different medium than [showrunners] David [Benioff] and Dan [Weiss], never forget. They had six hours for this final season. I expect these last two books of mine will fill 3,000 manuscript pages between them before I’m done… and if more pages and chapters and scenes are needed, I’ll add them.”
He concluded: “How about this? I’ll write it. You read it. Then everyone can make up their own mind, and argue about it on the internet.”