House of the Dragon Targaryen logo

HBO’s next series set in George R.R. Martin’s Westeros franchise is officially underway. According to Deadline, production has begun on House of the Dragon, a prequel series that’s set three centuries before Game of Thrones.

Now that cameras are rolling, HBO says that the series will debut sometime in 2022.

In October 2019, HBO greenlit 10 episodes for the series, and has steadily been casting various roles for it since last fall. The series is based on parts of Martin’s book Fire & Blood, and will follow a conflict known as the Dance of the Dragons as House Targaryen tears itself apart while its various factions try to figure out its line of succession. Paddy Considine will play King Viserys I, a chosen successor to Jaehaerys Targaryen at the Great Council at Harrenhal, and apparently won’t prove to be a good leader to hold the council together.

To coincide with the news, HBO released a picture of the first socially-distanced table read for the cast:

Game of Thrones ended back in 2019, and HBO isn’t willing to let the story end with it. Prior to the show’s conclusion, the network had a handful of shows in the works, of which House of the Dragon was chosen as Game of Thrones‘ successor. (A pilot for another one, The Long Night, set thousands of years prior to the series, was filmed, but ultimately passed on.)

Should House of the Dragon succeed, HBO has a number of other projects in development to fill the demand of content for its HBO Max streaming service: a series about Dunk & Egg, an animated series, and a trio of shows: 9 Voyages / Sea Snake, Flea Bottom, and 10,000 Ships.

But first, House of the Dragon will have to demonstrate that the legions of fans of Game of Thrones still want to return to Westeros, and if HBO will be able to capture the fervent obsession that came with it.