Belfast Telegraph

Game of Thrones spin-offs 'are being developed'

By Rebecca Black

The final series of the global hit drama, Game of Thrones, may have been announced, but it won't be the end of the fantasy world which was brought to life via some of Northern Ireland's most stunning scenery.

Set on the fictional continents of Westeros and Essos, featuring actors such as Kit Harrington, the series follows the trials and tribulations of a number of powerful families who battle and scheme as they compete to sit on the Iron Throne of the Seven Kingdoms.

The eighth and final series of the show has been announced, but now four spin-offs from the HBO series are reportedly in the planning stages, with a number of writers believed to be taking part.

Game of Thrones author George R R Martin is said to be on board and "personally involved" with two of the projects.

HBO has confirmed the ideas include a prequel or sequel.

The Independent has reported that the spin-offs will "explore different time periods of George R R Martin's vast and rich universe", suggesting they take place before or after the events of Game of Thrones, as opposed to concurrently.

Series 7 is set to premiere on Sky Atlantic on July 16 and includes seven eagerly awaited episodes. The first teaser trailer for the new series was released on March 30. The coming series promises a "brutal, bloody and wintry return to Westeros".

Filming for series eight, the final series, is expected to begin in September. It is understood to be planned to comprise six episodes.

Game of Thrones is filmed mainly in Northern Ireland at locations including the Paint Hall Studios in Titanic Quarter, Belfast, Castleward in Co Down, the Mourne Mountains and the north coast, including the Dark Hedges, as well as Croatia, Iceland and Spain.

It has become a significant employer, drawing on production staff from Northern Ireland as well as several local actors including the likes of Conleth Hill, Ian McElhinney, Richard Dormer, Kristian Nairns, Callum Wharry and the late JJ Murphy.

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