George R.R. Martin on why he won’t be writing for Game of Thrones season 5

At San Diego Comic Con, Entertainment Weekly‘s James Hibberd rounded up George R.R. Martin and the cast of Game of Thrones to talk about the show and what’s in store for the future.

George R.R. Martin reveals that he actually won’t be writing an episode at all for season 5, because, “I have this book that I have to finish!” He adds that he “figured [he]’d better write the book rather than the episode.” Season 5 will be the first year to have no episode penned by the author.

The video also includes Sophie Turner chatting about her character’s transformation into “Darth Sansa,” Kit Harington’s excitement over the Wall being “invaded” by a whole other part of the story with the arrival of Melisandre and company, and Maisie Williams teasing that Arya is “not someone to be messed with” in season 5.

Sue says: It’ll be strange to have no episode written by George, but I can’t say I’m not relieved he’s focusing on The Winds of Winter.

52 responses

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    1. While GRRM’s episode are usually some of the best every season, I’m definitely glad he is going to focus on the books. I’m still optimistic that it will be out by the time season 5 premieres.

      In a interview with Vulture, he also said he will be fulfilling prior commitments but is not scheduling any other trips this year. He also included that he will most likely not be doing a set visit this year.

      http://vult.re/1k18Hal

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    2. I could be reading way too much into things, but with this news it adds to my feeling we’ll hear TWOW news sooner rather than later.
      * He and Robin Hobb are doing an Authors conversation in August for their publisher. – The next Fitz book will have just been released for her and seems like a good time to announce his.
      * The boy that donated all of his allowance to a UK wolf sanctuary asked if it were still possible to get a small role in the book with a gruesome death. GRRM wrote back that he couldn’t do that but also make a large donation in the kids name. – Is it because the book is almost done and no new content is needed?
      * The interview with his editor seemed very optimistic a few months back.
      I’m probably going to be sorely disappointed with my conspiracy theory here, but a girls’ gotta dream, right? Right??

      PS – Loving WOTW! Feels new but familar like the good ‘ol days!

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    3. Maybe he finally realized the show won’t be doing a thousand seasons of AFFC and ADWD. Or maybe he just doesn’t want to write the future of his books.

      Anyway, I sincerely hope this and that quote from Vulture are a sign that he’s changing and starting to give a shit about writing the books.

      That would be nice.

      TWOW Summer 2016

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    4. Al Swearengen,

      This could be where that new guy Dave Hill comes in, actually. After all, GRRM would have decided this some time ago – perhaps around the time we learned about the new writer.

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    5. First comment on the new side, glad you guys left the fanside! 🙂

      It’s pity that George doesn’t write an episode, because, you know, he’s a good writer. He did TV show writing before book writing… but focusing on the book seems like a good idea!
      He said he needs time to write the book, not just time for the writing itself but going mentally into the characters and into the world. I guess the best way to do so is to take a big time block at once without any distractions. 🙂

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    6. Personally, I think he’s not writing any more episodes because he’s tired of the way D&D rewrite them, chop them up, and mix in their own scenes, so that you can’t be sure which scenes he wrote and which scenes D&D wrote. I can only imagine how frustrating having D&D-penned scenes attributed to you would be, or having your scenes which were moved to another episode attributed to D&D.

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    7. Stranger,

      I doubt it. This is par for the course. Showrunners do this on every show. Rewriting, editing, moving things around. D&D are no different, this is just how it works. I really don’t think GRRM would be so precious or thin-skinned about it. He knows television.

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    8. Both positive and negative. His episodes have been some of the best, but any extra work put into the books is good.

      I hope he still stays on as an executive producer.

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    9. It doesn’t matter if he doesn’t finish before the show ends. D&D are already taking their own route anyway it seems

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    10. Morgan,

      Martin’s publisher has all but ruled out TWOW being on shelves before season five. Given that the book-writer is only now giving ASOIAF a priority, I would be surprised if it was out before season six.

      I wonder what the next Mayonnaise Knot is going to be?

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    11. cosca,

      Bah. She has to say that, it is her job.

      Minimum six month lead time for final editing, printing, marketing, etc. makes it highly unlikely that we will see it before late late 2015 now. Still hoping for a miracle, tho. 🙂

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    12. This is good news! Or maybe I’m over-reacting on hearing “finish” and “winds of winter” in the same sentence by George

      OT (kinda, it was the same interview) any ideas on who’s POV the TWOW prologue is from now that we know Jeyne Westerling’s in it? I’m thinking either Blackfish or assorted Frey

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    13. Mormont,

      Edmure (if it isn’t done by the brotherhood) else it might just be Thoros of Myr. I don’t think the pov will die this time though as GRR Martin said he might not follow that rule this time.

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    14. No wonder John Bradley looked so uncomfortable throughout that interview, he was absolutely dripping!

      Shame not to be getting a George penned episode, but definitely for the best reason though

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    15. George was talking about 3 seasons for ADWD and AFFC, and now he finds out it will be barely one.

      Yeah, hes pissed. No doubt about it.

      So, the excuse now is that it will kill D&D to do more than 7 seasons, they miss their families and their wives will divorce them, and its so much work…..well how about gracefully leaving the show? You gave us four seasons, let someone else take over the show for the next 4 seasons, as 8 seasons will be perfect and well get Arianne, the Greyjoys, Aegon etc.

      What were getting now is not ASOIAF. I dont pity David and Dan who claim its so much work. Stop creating the show then, give it to someone else.

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    16. Kyrion:
      George was talking about 3 seasons for ADWD and AFFC, and now he finds out it will be barely one.

      Yeah, hes pissed. No doubt about it.

      So, the excuse now is that it will kill D&D to do more than 7 seasons, they miss their families and their wives will divorce them, and its so much work…..well how about gracefully leaving the show? You gave us four seasons, let someone else take over the show for the next 4 seasons, as 8 seasons will be perfect and well get Arianne, the Greyjoys, Aegon etc.

      What were getting now is not ASOIAF. I dont pity David and Dan who claim its so much work. Stop creating the show then, give it to someone else.

      Considering all due the renegotiations of the contracts after the 7th season, we’ll get most likely 7 seven good seasons or an unfinished story that ends after the 7th season.

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    17. Dude. We got the band back together.

      Yay! New site! Yay! Gurm writing! Boo no Arianne!…Yay new site!

      That’s really all I got right now. Waddup homies?

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    18. There might be drama behind the scenes, but from all the media I have been inhaling over the past 3 years, I don’t see a rift. Yes, he wishes it could be truer to his stories, but no, I don’t think he is upset with the show storyline. In the end, I think he is at peace with “the show being the show, and the books being the books.” It’s time for him to concentrate on the books.

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    19. Throughout the video I couldn’t help focusing on how Rory McCann is about a foot or so taller than anyone else 😀
      Anyway, his reluctance to admit his character’s demise gives me hope that there actually was a maester hiding in the bush.

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    20. Kyrion:
      George was talking about 3 seasons for ADWD and AFFC, and now he finds out it will be barely one.

      Yeah, hes pissed. No doubt about it.

      So, the excuse now is that it will kill D&D to do more than 7 seasons, they miss their families and their wives will divorce them, and its so much work…..well how about gracefully leaving the show? You gave us four seasons, let someone else take over the show for the next 4 seasons, as 8 seasons will be perfect and well get Arianne, the Greyjoys, Aegon etc.

      What were getting now is not ASOIAF. I dont pity David and Dan who claim its so much work. Stop creating the show then, give it to someone else.

      They can’t afford new contracts for an 8th season. Look at how the contracts skyrocketed for a show like Friends. An 8th season guarantees that most of the budget will be eaten up in casting unless HBO ponies up

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    21. You guys I feel like “The 4” should be smoking an A-Team esque cigar and saying “I love it when a plan comes together” so happy to see all the same familiar faces that I love to hate.

      GRRM is putting his nose to the grindstone. I love it. I love both entities separate but (sorta) equal, and I look forward to both, but I would be a liar if I didn’t say I wanted tWoW before the show passes it. Still a long shot, but holding out hope.

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    22. Ashara D,

      21 years actually.
      So her job is to answer questions about the books progress on her personal twitter. Guess the job has really changed since my day.

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    23. Mormont:
      So should we talk about how Show!Trystane is hot as hell

      Yes, we should definitely be talking about that. Kit Harrington now has competition for hottest guy in GoT.

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    24. cosca,

      LMAO at “job has changed since your day”! I snorted.

      Lady Dayne, I think Ms. Johnson is telling the truth as far as she knows. She copied Martin on these tweets, and so gave him a chance to confirm or deny. Basically she doesn’t know anything besides the fact it is not scheduled. In her agenda so to speak. And he’s not saying anything. It doesn’t mean THAT much. Ms. Johnson is not saying it is impossible either…

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    25. He told zap2it that it takes him a month to write an episode. I’d say that month is better spent on TWOW than on an episode which D and D, and Cogman and now Dave Hill could write just as adequately.

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    26. Strider:
      cosca,

      LMAO at “job has changed since your day”! I snorted.

      Lady Dayne, I think Ms. Johnson is telling the truth as far as she knows. She copied Martin on these tweets, and so gave him a chance to confirm or deny. Basically she doesn’t know anything besides the fact it is not scheduled. In her agenda so to speak. And he’s not saying anything. It doesn’t mean THAT much. Ms. Johnson isnot saying it is impossible either…

      GRRM doesn’t use Twitter. He has started many times that the only social media he users is his Not A Blog. So whoever she copied, it wasn’t him

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    27. Blucypresslily: GRRM doesn’t use Twitter. He has started many times that the only social media he users is his Not A Blog. So whoever she copied,it wasn’t him

      George is actually (finally) on Twitter, though he doesn’t Tweet much at all. You can find him at @GRRMspeaking

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    28. As much as I love his episodes, I’m very happy to hear George focusing on TWoW.

      I’m not adverse to the deviations from the books, but I’m certain it’s strange for him to adapt his own work with so many changes coming. To write a screenplay where his characters and their storylines are so different from his own, it might feel like he’s writing his own fanfiction. Ultimately, not the best use of his time

      I hope he’s still consulting the showrunners.

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    29. Ashara D:
      cosca,

      Bah. She has to say that, it is her job.

      Minimum six month lead time for final editing, printing, marketing, etc. makes it highly unlikely that we will see it before late late 2015 now. Still hoping for a miracle, tho.

      Minimum lead time of six months? ADWD begs to differ: delivered in May, published in July.

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