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HBO execs explain why Game of Thrones prequel Bloodmoon was cancelled even after getting a $30 million pilot

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The roots of the Weirwood trees are growing deeper into the world of Westeros. HBO is looking forward to exploring Godswood and beyond with several spinoffs in development, with House of The Dragon currently being the first one confirmed to be arriving in August. However, some of these branches were chopped off early in development, while there was one that was cut off even after blossoming into a pilot episode. HBO had canceled the prequel series dubbed Bloodmoon or The Long Night after they had filmed the first episode which cost them nearly $30 million.

In a recent interview with The Hollywood Reporter, HBO’s executive VP of drama Francesca Orsi revealed, “Bloodmoon really stood out as different, with unique world-building. Tonally it felt very adult, sophisticated and intelligent, and there was a thematic conversation at the center of it about disenfranchisement in the face of colonialism and religious extremism.”

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However, George R. R. Martin had published only about eight lines of text about the time period of the show, leaving Jane Goldman little to build from. “Bloodmoon was a very difficult assignment,” Martin says. “We’re dealing with a much more primitive people. There were no dragons yet. A lot of the pilot revolved around a wedding of a Southern house to a Northern house and it got into the whole history of the White Walkers.”

“It required a lot more invention; it was higher risk, higher reward,” HBO’s chief content officer Casey Bloys said. “There wasn’t anything glaringly wrong with it. Development and pilots are hard.”

 
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Agrees Robert Greenblatt, the then chairman of HBO’s parent company WarnerMedia explained, “It wasn’t unwatchable or horrible or anything. It was very well produced and looked extraordinary. But it didn’t take me to the same place as the original series. It didn’t have that depth and richness that the original series’ pilot did.”

Do you feel HBO made the right decision by canceling Bloodmoon? Tell us in the comments below!

 

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Sayantan is a keen follower of everything pop culture; from films, shows, anime to video games and latest memes. He started writing professionally for Wiki of Thrones during the 2021 lockdown, and has been developing his writing and editing skills ever since. With a growing repertoire amassing renowned websites, Sayantan is your go to guy for all things Game of Thrones and House of the Dragon.

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