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It looks like the gods are smiling down upon us, because in a rare glimmer of good news from #GameofThrones, it is (tentatively) confirmed that the impending writers' strike will NOT affect the jewel in the #HBO crown.
To recap: The Writers Guild of America was due to enter new contracts on March 24, but due to outrage over substandard pay, they have been arguing with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers and have proposed a strike for May 2. In a ghostly reminder of the 2007–2008 writers' strike, Hollywood is prepared to grind to a halt as TV shows and movies alike would effectively down tools on production.
Taking to Twitter, EW's regular Westeros correspondent James Hibberd confirmed that the hotly anticipated final season of the David Benioff and D.B. Weiss's masterpiece will remain unaffected:
Will season 8 be late?
If the eighth season of HBO's snowy/sunny show is delayed, it would certainly cause fan outrage and more than a few writers to be stabbed with the pointy end by Arya's Needle. While Hibberd seems pretty sure that events won't be affected, can we really be so sure? Speaking at SXSW, the showrunners broke the final six episodes down into the following writing duties:
Episode 1: Dave Hill
Episode 2: Bryan Cogman
Episodes 3–6: David Benioff and Dan Weiss
All four are members of the WGA, while Cogman in particular has shown his pro-stance for striking:
Thank. You. https://t.co/y5upedkTER
— Bryan Cogman (@b_cogman) April 21, 2017
Thankfully, the show is notoriously far ahead of itself, and back in 2016, Benioff and Weiss said they could write the final episode that day if they had to. However, even if all scripts are completed by May 2, the strike would still keep them off set. We saw this effect 2009's Star Trek when J.J. Abrams said he was left unhappy with the finished product due to an inability to change even the smallest of lines. With Game of Thrones being such an involved and evolving process, that is an idea that just won't work. That being said, hopefully, we will be able to watch Jon, Daenerys, and the dragons bow out in style on schedule in 2018.
With filming on Season 7 having wrapped and a July 16 air date locked down, we can at least set sail to the land of incest and torture without fear that the impending WGA strike will ruin the latest run of our blood-soaked bounty.
In the 2007–2008 strike, shows like 30 Rock, The Big Bang Theory, and Breaking Bad were forced to slash their episode numbers, but with Game of Thrones rumored to only have six episodes in its final series anyway, it is not like they can reduce their run any further. Even the Song of Ice and Fire was affected last time and the strike left series author #GeorgeRRMartin blaming HBO for not picking up the show sooner.
With the last strike lasting for 100 days, we have already seen how the long-term effects can be devastating. Surely we won't see a repeat of such a cataclysmic event and it is likely that the AMPTP is keen to resolve any strike action ASAP? With 96 percent of WGA members voting for strike action, other big shows like The Walking Dead are on tenterhooks as to their upcoming fate. At least for the time being, we remain optimistic that the Iron Throne will remain exactly where it is and ready for someone to eventually sit on it in 2018.