Nathalie Emmanuel Reassures Fans That the Final Season Won’t Be “Rushed”

EB1DDBE9-D357-4897-940C-0D0B11BF321BIn a recent interview, Nathalie Emmanuel put some fans’ fears for season 8 to rest. As much pressure as the Game of Thrones team is under to bring the epic cultural phenomenon to a close on a deadline, Emmanuel assured us that the final season will give us the ending Game of Thrones deserves, not just the one HBO needs.

Emmanuel discussed the pacing of the six episode final season with Metro:

“It definitely will not be rushed conclusion,” she said.

“They’ve taken the exact number of hours to tell the story they want to tell and it will be brilliant. [The showrunners] will never leave the fans unsatisfied, they won’t leave the fans left short, it will go over and above the fans expectations as they do every season.”

During the interview she also said the final script read through was “so emotional,” echoing HBO exec Francesca Orsi’s description from earlier this month.

42 responses

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    1. After the way they made most episodes feel “rushed” last season, I’m not even a little bit encouraged by her assurances.

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    2. it’s not like those actors see anything outside their own scenes lol. the only reason last season felt rushed to me was that all the other seasons had the same pacing in terms of how long it took characters to navigate the world. it was a tad jarring if not a big deal.

      i feel like with the length of time we have in between last season and the next, it wont feel as rushed simply for the fact that it should have similar pacing to last season.

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    3. Some people will consider it rushed no matter what and are convinced that D&D just want to be done with it. I can never get enough so “over too soon” is what I’ll feel and will wish they’d expanded on unnecessary elements of the entire story. That desire is different. They aren’t rushing as they’re simply focusing on the main story rather than trying to draaaaw it out like so many do these days to make as much money as possible. I still think D&D are just as big of fans of ASoIaF as most. Their names are on this series forever so I’m sure they don’t want it to just fizzle out at the end. If they thought they needed more time to finish it properly I think they’d have used more time.

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    4. GeekFurious,

      Whatever you thought of season seven’s pacing, by the end of it pretty much all the characters are set in place, all side-plots have been resolved (except Yara as a hostage,) the Wall is down and the White Walkers are through. I know that “pacing” is a very subjective thing, but as far as I’m concerned, six episodes may feel relatively leisurely, considering the circumstances, not rushed!

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    5. Yes, she is very, very beautiful, and her charakter Missandei also is very beautiful – a kind of rest between all the struggeling, wandering, suffering charakters around.

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    6. heh, my experience is that many fans (for nearly every franchise with which I have any experience) call good pacing “rushed” and practically revel in turgid pacing. So, I would not read too much into this: my bet is what she means is this is what general audiences, critics, etc., will think to be unrushed.

      At any rate, the pacing for the last season should be really brisk if it is done at the proper tempo. There should not be much setup: there should be quick reminders of things that have been setup in the past, and then a lot of payoffs. Again, think of Return of the King or the final Harry Potter film: after the very beginning, almost everything was a payoff, and what setup we got was basically a domino effect from a payoff elsewhere.

      When you think about it, there probably is not too much setup left. We still need the big “why” of the Walkers, and we might need the “why” of R’hllor. But pretty much all of the other big guns that need to be fired have been hung already (and often fired already).

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    7. I’m probably in the minority of fans who genuinely enjoyed the pace of season 7. As others have remarked in this thread, the only episodes I thought were rushed were 5 & 6. The rest of the season moved along very well. It still surprises me that people expect the show to possess excellent pacing when the books themselves skip from point A to B quite often.

      I’d rather have expedited pacing than a bunch of meandering that serves no purpose in the grand scheme of things.

      The players have been set up in great fashion so there really isn’t much need for any type of exposition of any sort (except if the showrunners choose to divulge upon the long night or whatever is to come for Westeros).

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    8. I found season seven’s pace to be terribly rushed also. And not only rushed but poorly plotted and incredibly sloppy. A season can be brisk but still well paced. Last season FELT like they were running the clock out in some episodes.

      But I believe that s7 in a lot of ways was the transitional season between s6 and s8 and therefore the final season will be better in terms of pacing because they’ve got a firm endgame in sight.

      A lot is on the line for HBO and D&D. I think they’re putting their all in this one.

      So I’m choosing to believe Nathalie here lol.

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    9. The plot-driven aspects of s7 — Jon/Dany/NK — were OK, though Jon and Dany’s relationship happened quicker compared to hers with Drogo or his with Ygritte. The biggest problem was with the Winterfell story because it was character driven and D&D decided to go with a suspense take. That requires nuance and ebb and flow that they just did not give that story, or the time to develop them. There were a few other character beats that needed more breathing room. I don’t know if they needed more episodes, but they definitely could’ve used 10-15 more minutes here and there.

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    10. Catspaw Assassin,

      lol…and that Tyrion Vineyard in CR in S8

      NinaD:
      The plot-driven aspects of s7 — Jon/Dany/NK — were OK, though Jon and Dany’s relationship happened quicker compared to hers with Drogo or his with Ygritte. The biggest problem was with the Winterfell story because it was character driven and D&D decided to go with a suspense take. That requires nuance and ebb and flow that they just did not give that story, or the time to develop them. There were a few other character beats that needed more breathing room. I don’t know if they needed more episodes, but they definitely could’ve used 10-15 more minutes here and there.

      </blockquote
      Also Danny relationship with Drogo was fast enough..in the first ep she married and in the second fell in love and stayed pregnant..That Littlefinger killed was lazy writing

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    11. Even watching the “Trial” of Littlefinger for the first time it was clear that there was a huge amount of back story missing.
      Sansa went from not knowing about Faceless men, to telling LF how skilled they were.
      Arya gave Sansa the dagger after the faces conversation. That was her way of saying I trust you, Sansa would have understood that.
      Arya comes into the trial with Needle and the dagger. If she had been on trial then no way Sansa would have allowed that!

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    12. I know this interview doesn’t say a great deal but I am hoping S7 was the set-up for an amazing S8 in the same way S5 set the path for S6 (probably the best season overall).

      The fact that they are taking nine months to film six episodes suggests to me that the final episodes will be epic in terms of scale at the very least. We know the show runners know the endings for all main characters from GRRM but I still wish he had written the finale myself.

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    13. Mia: found season seven’s pace to be terribly rushed also. And not only rushed but poorly plotted and incredibly sloppy. A season can be brisk but still well paced. Last season FELT like they were running the clock out in some episodes.

      This is pretty much how I feel, there were good things about S7 and it was not the weakest season (better than 5 and probably S1 in hindsight) but there were flaws which stood out. That said, it really felt like the bridge between an epic S6 (which had loads of big pay off moments) and the grand finale. It moved the characters into position for the great war and the resolution of rule in Westeros, the final six episodes should give us the pay off now.

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    14. Jon Snowed,

      But to give realistic expectations of the TV series.
      I expect stunning action sequences but not too much in depth character development.
      I think the characters have all been established now and the final series will concentrate on action rather than story telling.
      Don’t expect any new, deep, dark storylines to appear.

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    15. NinaD,

      What? She met Drogo in episode 1 and by episode 3 they were in love. Jon/Dany in Season 7.. with the whole frosty meeting, then cave scene, asking his opinion in episode 3, her seeing him interact with Drogon, and her pulling away her hand after realising she has fallen for him in episode 6… Far more interactions and plot/character development between them that Dany and Drogo in season 1.

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    16. Colin Armfield,

      They went for surprise over suspense with that. It was more about tricking the audience into thinking something different was going to happen, which ultimately fails. In contrast, think of the Red Wedding. It wasn’t a trick. When you go back, you think “How could I have not seen this coming?” Whereas with the LF trial, they purposefully went out of their way to hide it… because of course Arya and Sansa and Mr. I See Everything would’ve easily set up LF.
      They could’ve built the suspense by showing the audience the set up instead of going for the surprise and putting us in LF’s perspective. That also would’ve felt less rushed because we’re actually seeing things happen instead of being left in the dark with vague interactions between Arya and Sansa.

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    17. No, Season 7 didn’t feel rushed at all.

      Dany’s invasion falling apart in the space of two episodes.
      The sacking of Highgarden taking place off-screen, apparently with consummate ease.
      The insulting ways Benjen and Meera left the show.
      Bran suddenly being an automaton.
      Cersei’s sudden pregnancy.
      Tyrion and Jaime resolving all their problems in 2 minutes flat – the same amount of time they dedicated to Davos trying to bribe some guards.
      Jon and Dany supposedly falling madly in love in the space of 4 or 5 episodes, comprising around 10 shared scenes, most of which were spent talking about zombies, war and throne rights. #greatestlovestoryofalltime
      All the contrived Sansa/Arya nonsense, especially the “Ta da!!! We suddenly know everything. And we learnt it all off-screen” conclusion.
      All that Beyond the Wall time-bending nonsense.
      All the missing dialogue, detail and character focus…

      Tyrion: “Last time I was here, I killed my father with a crossbow”
      Davos: “Last time I was here, you killed my son with wildfire”
      —- End Transmission —-
      How does that make you feel?

      Every time they overlooked details or made short shrift of a moment with dramatic potential, it was like – “There’s no time!”

      I still hold out slim hope that some of the seemingly rushed elements and missing details were by design and will have some pay-off next season.

      But people keep insisting that there’ll be no time for any more drama in the final season – it’ll just be war, Dany & Jon and more war – and if that turns out to be the case then it’d make Season 7 feel like even more of a missed opportunity.

      Anyway, I don’t think any of the actors or even the producers are in a position to determine whether it feels rushed, since they don’t approach the show from the same perspective as the viewers.

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    18. I feel the rushed argument can be boiled down to the time question. They need to do a better job expressing how much time has passed in between episodes and scenes. For example, we went from Jon and Dany staring each other down and only coming to a slight agreement to making googly eyes to each other in a cave with Dany suddenly taking advice from Jon all by the next episode. Obviously, this is supposed to have been weeks or even months later…but we shouldn’t have to be guessing if something is weeks or months later. In my opinion, that’s what makes it feel “rushed”, even if it’s not. They’ve never been good at expressing how much time has passed though, and I’m guessing things won’t be any different in season 8 in that regard.

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    19. Ramsay’s 20th Good Man:
      No, Season 7 didn’t feel rushed at all.

      Dany’s invasion falling apart in the space of two episodes.
      The sacking of Highgarden taking place off-screen, apparently with consummate ease.
      The insulting ways Benjen and Meera left the show.
      Bran suddenly being an automaton.
      Cersei’s sudden pregnancy.
      Tyrion and Jaime resolving all their problems in 2 minutes flat – the same amount of time they dedicated to Davos trying to bribe some guards.
      Jon and Dany supposedly falling madly in love in the space of 4 or 5 episodes, comprising around 10 shared scenes, most of which were spent talking about zombies, war and throne rights. #greatestlovestoryofalltime
      All the contrived Sansa/Arya nonsense, especially the “Ta da!!! We suddenly know everything. And we learnt it all off-screen” conclusion.
      All that Beyond the Wall time-bending nonsense.
      All the missing dialogue, detail and character focus…

      Tyrion: “Last time I was here, I killed my father with a crossbow”
      Davos: “Last time I was here, you killed my son with wildfire”
      —- End Transmission —-
      How does that make you feel?

      Every time they overlooked details or made short shrift of a moment with dramatic potential, it was like – “There’s no time!”

      I still hold out slim hope that some of the seemingly rushed elements and missing details were by design and will have some pay-off next season.

      But people keep insisting that there’ll be no time for any more drama in the final season – it’ll just be war, Dany & Jon and more war – and if that turns out to be the case then it’d make Season 7 feel like even more of a missed opportunity.

      Anyway, I don’t think any of the actors or even the producers are in a position to determine whether it feels rushed, since they don’t approach the show from the same perspective as the viewers.

      Most of the actors on the show are fans of it so yes, the value of their opinion should be weighed just like anyone on a message board or behind a television screen. They may suffer from a higher degree or bias considering they work on the show, but their opinions should still be taken into consideration nonetheless. And only they know the true capacity of the effort they put into the show so it’s natural for them to leave with more fondness.

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    20. No one in the cast is going to say otherwise and they have no idea what the final product will be. So whatever Nathalie has to say is irrelevant.

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    21. It is amazing though when you rewatch the first 6 seasons and consider it’s pacing compared to season 7 and potentially 8. In retrospect, although there was various plots early on that dragged on and on, I prefer that to the “rushed” feeling of season 7. But I am not sure that this had an impact of the quality of the material we were seeing. I think it has more to do with my personal preference of seeing as much GOT on TV as I can get.

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    22. Colin Armfield:
      Even watching the “Trial” of Littlefinger for the first time it was clear that there was a huge amount of back story missing.
      Sansa went from not knowing about Faceless men, to telling LF how skilled they were.
      Arya gave Sansa the dagger after the faces conversation. That was her way of saying I trust you, Sansa would have understood that.
      Arya comes into the trial with Needle and the dagger. If she had been on trial then no way Sansa would have allowed that!

      I just took that as, she made a beeline to Bran and he or Arya gave her the info, while they all talked about what they knew, Sansa on all but KL throne room, Bran the throne room and the finer part of LF’s game, Arya on Harrenhall, etc.

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    23. IMO, the fact that so many people have different interpretations of the same thing goes to show how poorly handled the WF plotline was for season 7. The payoff in episode 7 just wasn’t there for me at all. It was probably one of those things where it unfolded better on paper than it did on tv, otherwise, imo, it was a rare misfire from D&D. I was much more disappointed in that storyline than the wight hunt.

      I was also disappointed in the way Bronn and Jaime “escaped” the loot train battle down river at the beginning of “Eastwatch”. It was a complete cop out.

      Having said that, for every bad scene there were at least 2 good ones, so I still enjoyed season 7. Just not as much as seasons 3, 4, and 6, and maybe not even as much as seasons 1 and 2. Still, any GoT is good GoT.

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    24. Mr Derp: Having said that, for every bad scene there were at least 2 good ones, so I still enjoyed season 7.

      Agreed. Regardless of the eye-rolling associated with the WF, post-Loot-Train and wight mission scenes, there was Thoros saving the Hound’s ass then getting mortally wounded by taking on a damn wight polar bear! That scene, followed by Thoros’ last conversation with Jorah regarding past battle memories, more than made up for the headscratching moments.

      The final scenes for Aemon, Hodor and Thoros (in S5, S6 and S7, respectively) will always resonate strongly. As long as I have those, I’ll accept a Ragnarok, kraken jamboree, NK-Cersei monarchy, Drogon-Ser Pounce dictatorship or seven kingdom dance-off to end the series.

      Speaking of great scenes, I wonder how S7’s great scenes will integrate into the “top 101 Greatest GoT scenes” as sheperded by WotW last year before S7 aired?

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    25. Mr Derp,

      I was also a bit disappointed with Bronn and Jamie’s escape at the beginning of Eastwatch. I wasn’t at all annoyed by the fact that Bronn somehow managed to save Jamie, even with all of Jamie’s armor on, as many people were sticklers about that- just that they could’ve done so much more with the situation! I was really hyping up in my head, after all that happened at the end of episode 4, that Tyrion would be the one to “save” Jamie. Since he saw all that unfolded at the end, I was almost certain that he’d have some Dothraki jump in after Jamie to save him and bring him back.

      I thought the idea of Jamie as a captive gave a lot of room for different things to play out. I’m guessing D&D must have looked into this possibility, and figured it didn’t work with where they wanted the characters to go, but I for one really wanted to see things play out for Jamie as a POW, even if he got released the next episode to deliver terms to Cersei or something.

      Aside from that, I guess I did enjoy the quaint scenery of the still water looking over the battlefield for a couple of moments before Jamie and Bronn break through the surface. It was a well done shot aside from the missed opportunities.

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    26. Hodors Bastard: seven kingdom dance-off to end the series.

      …and I think you may have just come up with the prequel to end all prequels:

      A Dance-off of Dragons!

      Yea, I know. I’ll show myself out.

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    27. Winterfell Littlefinger story … just an 8 second scene of Sansa telling Bran “We need to talk…” would have satisfied me. It’s my understanding there was a similar scene filmed that was cut. Perhaps D&D thought the audience would have concluded Bran would have told Sansa that Ayra was safe. But he’s greenseer not a psychic!

      Hands down the worst part of S7 to me was Jaimie and Bronn floating down river in their heavy armor. Swords and gold hand intact.

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    28. Mr Derp: Yea, I know. I’ll show myself out.

      Lol. Many Sullied, myself included, have shown themselves out a while ago. Unfortunately, GRRM has locked the ‘ho’-doors and won’t let us back in! 🙂

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    29. Pigeon:
      The most beautiful woman in Westeros. ❤

      IKR? Everyone else is aging and looking more careworn and melancholy, and Missandei grows more radiant. Naturally I expect she won’t survive the war 🙁

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    30. Whilst I don’t pay too much attention to actor hype, it’s fair to say she has read the scripts and presumably been around on set for at least some of the five months of filming which has taken place so should have a good appreciation of what’s coming.

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