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View Full Version : The series and books - How will they do it? (Spoilers for books and series)



magictrick
July 31st, 2011, 09:35 PM
Anyone else wondering about how this will play out in terms of the events in the book and the actors' age and availability on the show?

If the production of each season continues as is we can assume the following order:
2012 - A Clash of Kings
2013 - A Storm of Swords
2014 - A Feast of Crows
2015 - A Dance with Dragons

2016 - The Winds of Winter (?)
2017 - A Dream of Spring (?)

The last two are just guesses because GRRM has not finished writing those, and is probably far from it. Even if this plays out perfectly, by the time ADWD goes to production all actors will be 5-6 years older than when the series started. This is especially relevant for child actors, who will grow and mature, but in the series they will need to look almost identical in age and appearance, as only a year or so has passed between the events of all these novels.

I guess they will need to employ really good makeup and take well placed shots so as to make it realistic that the character still looks relatively unchanged between each season/novel.

Second question is with the novels themselves. It took GRRM 6 years from the release of A Feast of Crows to finish ADWD. And lets remember, he already had the ideas for both books as his original intention was for them to be one novel. At this rate, by the time HBO finishes ADWD, The Winds of Winter novel won't be released and thus no show can be filmed. Lets not even mention the 7th book which wouldn't even have been started on, delaying production even further.

I guess the simple solution to this would be that GRRM really speeds up his writing somehow and releases both of the next two books in a 6 year time period.

Anyone else wondering on how all this will play out?

Selina
August 6th, 2011, 02:37 PM
Well, the later books are bigger and contain more stuff then the first one, so I would suppose that they could get split into more than one season. That alone should give GRRM more time to finish the missing books. Besides the first three books only took round about two years each to complete so there is hope that he will finish the next one faster.

Additionally I'm not even sure that the series can run as long as it would take to tell the whole story. I sincerely hope so, but I remain doubtful. Should they reach the point where they run out of material though, they probably could do the same as other series and just create "tv original" content (with GRRM giving some pointers as to how he thinks it should play out). Has happend on several anime series and I'm sure it has also happened live action series.

As for the actors problem .... Really no idea how they can/will handle this. It's not much of a problem with the adults, but the child actors will age noticeably faster ...

chrono trigger
August 13th, 2011, 11:16 AM
i suspect the show may end up going down a different path to the books and make it's own conclusion.

VampyreWraith
August 13th, 2011, 02:25 PM
I think the producers know a little bit about how things are supposed to work out at the end of the series(at least, I remember reading something like that in an interview with GRRM).
I don't know if the child actors aging would affect the story much, they could still do the things they do in the book and be older. They probably just might not able to act like only so short amount of time passed, since I think that only about 2 1/2 or maybe 3yrs(at most) have passed so far since the beginning of AGoT to ADwD. Dance and Feast overlap so they have to combine those, but they should still be 2 seasons.

Skydiver
August 18th, 2011, 05:15 PM
i hate to say it but I don't think i see this series lasting for tons of years.

Yes, it's good. the books are great and i'm watching...but i'm thinking a season a book with a little crossover (I've read spoilers that say that some plot threads are moved up, others back for 'dramatic reasons')

things will be simplified, whole chapters will be turned into single scenes - especially ones that are pure introspection

worst case scenario, if the ratings and awards don't hold things will get really condensed and minor plot threads abandoned in favor of big ones

VampyreWraith
August 18th, 2011, 05:55 PM
I guess I lot in the books(4 & 5 especially) can be condensed and shifted around for the tv series.

I figured that the one plot involving Jeyne Westerling would end up in the second season, because I think that is when it does take place but since the characters involved in that part of the story don't have a pov in the books, it wasn't talked about until the third book when a pov character is informed of what happened. Besides if that wasn't included Robb wouldn't have that much to do.

Cold Fuzz
August 18th, 2011, 06:27 PM
Just finishing A Dance with Dragons late last night, I'm more and more convinced that GRRM will not be able to finish the entire series with 7 books. If the books are going in the direction I think he's taking them, I do think he'll need an 8th book to finish everything. The only way around this would be if the plot really starting moving forward big-time with all the POV characters in The Winds of Winter.

Having said that, we may end up seeing the series around for at least 3-4 years. Now originally A Feast for Crows and A Dance with Dragons were supposed to be one book. Maybe things will get compressed and the two books will be merged when it goes on screen?

Skydiver
August 18th, 2011, 06:31 PM
I agree with that plot

the spoilers talk about the love story, of a sort, being moved from book three to two....well Robb pretty much disappeared halfway through book two, if not earlier, and all we do is hear about what he's been up to.

so if for nothing else than to keep an actor employed and on contract and the viewer reminded that they exist, that'll have to be moved forward

there's also a scene in book three

I'm only a little bit into it but Davos' story, where he's rescued, that's a whole chapter that'll really be a single scene in the show, if not the rescue combined with later scenes

I am sure the production staff has sat down, with a massive board, and the various plots and chapters and broken them down into seasons

for example, when i read the prologue to book three


and they're talking about 3 blasts of the horns meaning the Others, i can sooo see that being the final scene of season two....the three blasts, teh oh fudge looks on peoples faces, teh line about it being the others, and a wide camera flight movement going over the mountains and showing the rallying enemies from beyond the wall gathering...dum, dum, dum fade to black on that 'oh frak' moment

DigiFluid
June 29th, 2012, 04:57 AM
So, who wants to reconsider their answer now that we know that they'll be adapting 'about half' of Storm of Swords for Season 3? One assumes that means that Season 4 will be the second half of that book, and then....?

The US hardcover of SoS was 976 pages, and that's getting two seasons. Feast for Crows and Dance with Dragons take place (mostly) simultaneously, and have a combined US hardcover pagecount of nearly double SoS--1793 pages. Four seasons for the two (which, I note, would now take us to an 8th season, which seems...difficult to fathom)? Cut out a lot of stuff frustrate the built-in ASoIaF fanbase?

And then what about the two books that haven't yet been published? How on Earth are they going to finish the story on the show without it running for like 15 seasons?

Brother Freyr
June 29th, 2012, 05:56 AM
GRRM's loving it. He can procrastinate a little longer.

DigiFluid
June 29th, 2012, 06:02 AM
Yeah, but HBO isn't going to want to deal with ever-mounting costs forever :p

Gen. Chris
June 29th, 2012, 06:07 AM
I was thinking three seasons for Feast and Dragons. 2 to cover the shared time and one for the rest of Dragons. Perhaps slightly longer seasons to make up for it. I can't imagine there being four seasons...Even though I will admit it is a ridiculous amount of stuff.

DigiFluid
June 29th, 2012, 06:11 AM
I can see a lot of Feast getting trimmed down, so maybe an odd-number season split isn't a bad idea at all. Honestly, there was a lot of the book that was really bloody boring -- you could tell it was never meant to be its own volume.

I think that once I finish Dragons I'm going to go 'find' a copy that combines the two books in proper chronological order to see how it all plays out like that, without having to do all this bloody 'hmm whenabouts is this happening?' pondering.

magictrick
June 29th, 2012, 07:55 AM
There is also the option of trimming both Feast of Crows and Dance with Dragons into one season each, but making each of these seasons longer. Maybe 12 or 13 episodes as opposed to 10.
I don't know how they feel about the content of Feast, as the book is long but not a lot actually happens. It might not be the most exciting to watch if it dragged on for more than one season.

Brother Freyr
June 29th, 2012, 08:59 AM
I think that once I finish Dragons I'm going to go 'find' a copy that combines the two books in proper chronological order to see how it all plays out like thatMight be a good idea for the tv series to do the same.

Skydiver
July 1st, 2012, 05:46 PM
I know it's doing good in the ratings and awards but it is a horribly expensive show to make. IMHO, if they're smart they're gonna smush some stuff and condense a bit. I honestly can't see them being able to maintain the expenses for 15 years or so.

Skydiver
July 1st, 2012, 05:47 PM
Might be a good idea for the tv series to do the same.


I agree. they'll lose viewers if they hit a 'meanwhile.....' stage

Brother Freyr
July 1st, 2012, 05:48 PM
I honestly can't see them being able to maintain the expenses for 15 years or so.

That would be magnificent. :D

Skydiver
July 1st, 2012, 07:22 PM
It would be totally unprecedented. Not to mention the big issue of actors aging more than their characters (Arya for example, she'd have to be recast at least twice)

I have a horrible feeling that the show may end like the books...unfinished and abandoned. Hope I'm wrong

Gen. Chris
July 1st, 2012, 09:21 PM
I worry as well.

With the amount of material in Feast for Crows and Dance with Dragons, they could go up to three seasons between the two books.

My thinking is that for those two, they should increase the seasons to around 15 episodes a season, and have 2 seasons. I know it will drive up the costs per season but at the same time, wouldn't it cost less in the long run to do more shoots while the actors are already there?

If they don't figure something out, the series will get out of control. I'd hate for this epic tale to not be finished.

Skydiver
July 2nd, 2012, 02:48 AM
I do THINK it'd be cheaper to increase either the episodes or maybe the length per episode....run it closer to 59 minutes instead of the 51 that some shows like Dexter tend to run.

I don't have the books memorized or anything, but I do think, like Lord of the Rings, there are some plot angles that could be condensed. Things that dragged out for chapters and chapters in the books that could be settled in one 60 second scene.

The Mighty 6 platoon
July 2nd, 2012, 08:45 AM
I worry as well.

With the amount of material in Feast for Crows and Dance with Dragons, they could go up to three seasons between the two books.

If the show doesn't want to fall apart when they get to adapting those, then they'll probably significantly cut a lot from those. To be blunt there is probably a season, maybe a season and a half of usable material. The books might be long, but those two are terrible (in fact it's at this point that GRRM clearly shows he has no idea which direction he's taking the series in).


My thinking is that for those two, they should increase the seasons to around 15 episodes a season, and have 2 seasons. I know it will drive up the costs per season but at the same time, wouldn't it cost less in the long run to do more shoots while the actors are already there?
They aren't going to increase the number of episodes, not only because of costs, but the producers have stated they don't have the time. It takes them months to film 10 episodes, they have to film in 3 countries, that's going up to 4 countries for the third season, it just isn't happening.

By the time they get to adapting the 4th and 5th book I expect them to seriously deviate. They have already demonstrated that in season 2, and I expect them to do so again, especially when they have to work with source material which is so poor at that point. It's also quite likely that the show will run out of material to adapt at some point, I highly doubt GRRM will ever finish writing the books, and even if does manage to get the next one out before he croaks, if it matches the downward trend in quality like his last two books, it will be dire. Now whatever GRMM does, HBO aren't going to wait for him to finish, they'll carry on, and I think that increasingly the show will make it up as it goes along and simply leave the books behind eventually.

This will actually probably benefit the series in many ways, by Dance with Dragons everything has dragged, there is very little in the way of forward plot movement, and characters seem to be wandering aimlessly. By speeding things up, such as having Danearys actually return to Westeros, instead of wandering around pining for Daario, they might actually make a decent conclusion to the story.

Skydiver
July 2nd, 2012, 04:16 PM
I do agree.

I have an extended friend, an old man, who ALWAYS had dozens of projects going on. Despite the fact that he's 85, he's always got tons of things 'on his to do list'....why???? cause the old goat thinks as long as he's got a ton of stuff to do then he can't die.

I read GRRM's LJ and while I do know there's a lot of stuff about the books he can't talk about and won't talk about, I also get the feeling that he's having fun dragging it out, enjoying the attention and the fame. He's having a blast being the center of attention, and I think he's going to milk it for all he can. And I'm not saying this to diss the man, just that he's having fun and really doesn't have a motivation to finish things up.

i do think he kinda got lost in the story. Didn't know what to do, meandered around, dragged things out and in and out and in. I'd be willing to bet that the production staff has a plan to condense and deviate and 'save the series' so to speak.

there's a lotta junk in those books, wandering and rambling that could certainly be tightened up.

Gen. Chris
July 2nd, 2012, 04:41 PM
I've always wondered, about the three locations...Do all the directors go, say, to Iceland, and they film the scenes for their episodes (which frees up that unit), then go to Croatia, film their scenes, freeing up that unit, and then Ireland, film all the scenes, freeing up that unit...

Or do they do it in a way where each location has to wait for the production of each episode. Cause that seems like it would be more complicated than the other way, at least for each location.

Skydiver
July 2nd, 2012, 05:05 PM
I would think they have unit A in Iceland, Unit b in Croatia, Unit C in Ireland, likely filming relatively simultanously with schedules being juggled if actors are required in multiple countries at once

Gen. Chris
July 2nd, 2012, 05:24 PM
Okay, it just seems like an awfully huge hassle for the director as well as the actors to film in the traditional way of one episode at a time...Know what I mean?

Skydiver
July 2nd, 2012, 06:53 PM
I don't think they do one episode at a time. they do like LOTR did...and llike a lot of TV shows do....film one location at a time, multiple scenes/episodes.

so, theoretically in iceland they could tape 3 scenes from eps 1, 5 scenes from eps 3, 2 scenes from eps 8...etc

I'm willing to bet those episodes are filmed far out of chronological order. Heck, even in studios they tape it 'all the briefing room scenes on monday, all the infirmary scenes on tuesday, all the gate room scenes on wednesday, location thursday'....etc.

Gen. Chris
July 2nd, 2012, 07:25 PM
Lol that's what I thought. Except this is a bit different from scenes in a studio :P

Three main locations (soon going to be four), numerous directors, dozens of actors....Yeah, complicated.

Skydiver
July 2nd, 2012, 07:28 PM
Very much so. Which is why it's so expensive and why they'll need to condense and compact. Because they can only justify the costs if the ratings and awards hold. As soon as those slip so will the budget.
Which is part of the huge gamble to start an unfinished work.

Gen. Chris
July 2nd, 2012, 08:23 PM
Very much so. Which is why it's so expensive and why they'll need to condense and compact. Because they can only justify the costs if the ratings and awards hold. As soon as those slip so will the budget.
Which is part of the huge gamble to start an unfinished work.

Too bad they couldn't have waited a couple years...But then they wouldn't have gotten all the amazing child actors.

Skydiver
July 3rd, 2012, 02:50 AM
It's POSSIBLE that GRRM is under some 'finish the danged books' contract....as in finish the story by such and such date or we reserve the right to finish it for you'

HBO is smart enough not to get themselves in a corner, so I'm sure they have some sort of out.

The Mighty 6 platoon
July 3rd, 2012, 05:38 AM
It's POSSIBLE that GRRM is under some 'finish the danged books' contract....as in finish the story by such and such date or we reserve the right to finish it for you'

HBO is smart enough not to get themselves in a corner, so I'm sure they have some sort of out.
I don't think he is. I think HBO have the rights to do the adaptation, I think GRRM can go as fast or slow as he wants with the books. But HBO can do what they like with the adaptation, they can if they want change everything. They consult with GRRM, but that's a courtesy, they don't have to if they don't want to, and they could very well ignore him completely if they want.

Hence I don't think HBO are too worried about been stuck in a corner. They'll just change things if necessary with their stuff.

As for budget I don't think we need to worry too much, the ratings countries to go up, and they have a lot of leeway to fluctuate. Rome which cost HBO much more, and got less viewers, was still profitable for HBO, and though they cancelled it, they then said they regretted doing that as they were actually making money. Now bearing in mind that GOT gets more than twice the ratings than Rome, and there isn't too much to worry about.

More importantly what HBO really care about are subscribers, and since most people are subscribing for GOT, it's a safe bet that HBO will keep it going for a good while yet.

Brother Freyr
July 3rd, 2012, 07:03 AM
I don't think he is. I think HBO have the rights to do the adaptation, I think GRRM can go as fast or slow as he wants with the books. But HBO can do what they like with the adaptationThis is essentially what GRRM said in an interview that I read. GRRM also said he'd given the producers an outline of where he intended to take the story, and how we wanted to end it. He said he hoped the series wouldn't catch up to his writing (yeah, right! dream on.) but that the producers had everything they needed to move forward without him.

The Mighty 6 platoon
July 3rd, 2012, 12:25 PM
This is essentially what GRRM said in an interview that I read. GRRM also said he'd given the producers an outline of where he intended to take the story, and how we wanted to end it. He said he hoped the series wouldn't catch up to his writing (yeah, right! dream on.) but that the producers had everything they needed to move forward without him.
Indeed and I think this is what will happen, they'll use that outline to end the series at some point. If anyone thinks otherwise (and to be honest I think that's very few people, people here for example are quite realistic about the pace and current quality of GRRM's writing) then they are pretty damn naive.

Gen. Chris
July 3rd, 2012, 02:03 PM
Indeed and I think this is what will happen, they'll use that outline to end the series at some point. If anyone thinks otherwise (and to be honest I think that's very few people, people here for example are quite realistic about the pace and current quality of GRRM's writing) then they are pretty damn naive.

Well, I'd LIKE to think the books will come out first...

Of course...I'm not naive...Lol

Skydiver
July 3rd, 2012, 04:10 PM
he may get the next book out in the next year or so but I don't see the one after that for at least 2-3 after that

I can honestly see HBO wrapping it up in 5-6 years and then the kerfluffle will be 'who ended it better, HBO or GRRM?' because it will likey be said that his last books are an adaption of their show

The Mighty 6 platoon
July 3rd, 2012, 06:36 PM
Well, I'd LIKE to think the books will come out first...

Of course...I'm not naive...Lol

Ok well there's a difference between what we would like to happen, and what we think will actually happen. :P

Skydiver
July 4th, 2012, 07:30 AM
I think it could actually be kinda funny to have the show finish first, then have GRRM either live up to or excel beyond what the tv writers do. I'm not in the fandom so no worries about surviving a fan war(cause you know there'll be one)

It'll be interesting if a visualization of a book eventually becomes a novelization of a show. Don't think it's ever happened. The closest was harry potter, but she had the books done well before the movies caught up