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As we prepare for the bittersweet arrival of the final season of Game of Thrones, co-executive produer George R.R. Martin and showrunner Jane Goldman are developing the pilot for the latest installment in the Westeros universe. Rumored to be titled The Long Night, the Thrones prequel will take place thousands of years before our beloved Jon Snow and Daenerys Targaryen. In addition to the cast members announced earlier this year, more regulars have reportedly been added to the series.
According to Deadline, Marquis Rodriguez (pictured above), John Simm, Richard McCabe, John Heffernan, and Dixie Egerickx will be joining the ensemble of talent. Superhero fans will likely recognize Rodriquez from his role in Netflix's Luke Cage and Iron Fist, where he played the role of Darryl.
In addition to Martin and Goldman's roles as co-executive producers, GoT producers Vince Gerardis and Daniel Zelman are also tied to the project, among others. Thrones creators and executive producers David Benioff and D.B. Weiss will not be bringing their talents to the prequel, although Martin of course created the entire Thrones verse with his A Song of Ice and Fire novel series.
The new actors join Naomi Watts, Naomi Ackie, Toby Regbo, Ivanno Jeremiah, George Henley, Jamie Campbell Bower, Sheila Atim, Denise Gough, and Alex Sharp.
S.J. Clarkson of The Defenders will reportedly direct the pilot, and explained the prequel's deviation from the GoT plot in an interview with Entertainment Weekly. "Westeros is a very different place," she explained. "There’s no King’s Landing. There’s no Iron Throne. There are no Targaryens—Valyria has hardly begun to rise yet with its dragons and the great empire that it built. We’re dealing with a different and older world and hopefully that will be part of the fun of the series."
In terms of what information HBO has provided, the network has yet to disclose any revealing information. Based on the official logline though, it will uncover some of the legends and histories behind Game of Thrones, which for many made the show so appealing.
"Taking place thousands of years before the events of Game of Thrones, the series chronicles the world’s descent from the golden Age of Heroes into its darkest hour," the official synopsis reads. "And only one thing is for sure: from the horrifying secrets of Westeros’ history to the true origin of the white walkers, the mysteries of the East to the Starks of legend…it’s not the story we think we know."