George RR Martin signs deal for four Game of Thrones spin off series
Game of Thrones author George R. R. Martin has signed a new TV production deal to develop four offshoot series from the hit fantasy franchise.
Show creators and executive producers D. B. Weiss and David Benioff are currently preparing to premiere the seventh season of the show in June, and work on the final eighth season will begin later this year (17), ahead of a planned 2018 release.
However, fans have now been given more to look forward to as officials at U.S. network HBO have reached a deal with Martin to "explore different time periods" in the "vast and rich universe" created in his book series A Song of Ice and Fire in four related shows.
Specific details about the projects, as well as production timelines, have yet to be revealed, but Martin will pen the series with Godzilla's Max Borenstein, Kick-Ass screenwriter Jane Goldman, Mystic River's Brian Helgeland, and Carly Wray, who worked on Mad Men.
Weiss and Benioff will not be involved in the writing process, but will oversee the series as executive producers, alongside Martin, reports Deadline.com.
It's good news for fans, who have been patiently waiting for Martin to finish writing the sixth instalment of his A Song of Ice and Fire saga, following the 2011 release of the last book in the franchise, A Dance with Dragons.
He had been hoping to have the sequel, The Winds of Winter, complete in time for 2016, to coincide with the broadcast of the sixth season of the Game of Thrones TV adaptation, but he failed to hit his deadline.
Instead, Weiss and Benioff had to base their plotlines for the TV series on the book ideas Martin outlined for them in order to move forward with the project.