Winter is coming, but when will it end?
The fourth season of HBO's "Game of Thrones" premieres on April 6, continuing after the events of the climactic Red Wedding that saw many of the fantasy show's fan-favorite heroes killed off in gruesome fashion. But that's hardly the end of the road for the series; in fact, according to creators David Benioff and D.B. Weiss, we're only at the halfway point.
Speaking with Vanity Fair, Benioff and Weiss revealed their plans to end "Game of Thrones" after seven or eight seasons. "It doesn't just keep on going because it can," said Weiss. "I think the desire to milk more out of it is what would eventually kill it, if we gave into that."
The "Game of Thrones" show runners also have an ending in mind, thanks to their conversations with George R.R. Martin, the author of the "A Song of Ice and Fire" novels the HBO series takes its cues from.
"Last year we went out to Santa Fe for a week to sit down with him [Martin] and just talk through where things are going, because we don't know if we are going to catch up and where exactly that would be," said Benioff, referring to the fact that Martin still has two novels in the "Ice and Fire" series left to complete; the author is known for his bold storytelling, but not exactly his swift pace.
"If you know the ending, then you can lay the groundwork for it," Benioff continued. "And so we want to know how everything ends. We want to be able to set things up. So we just sat down with him and literally went through every character."
Of course, for fans of the novels, the idea of the show revealing the ending of the saga before Martin is finished telling the story on his own terms, isn't exactly pleasant. Then again, nothing in the world of Westeros is exactly pleasant. If it's any consolation, Martin hopes and believes he can finish his books before the TV series catches up with him.
"I can give them the broad strokes of what I intend to write, but the details aren't there yet," he said. "I'm hopeful that I can not let them catch up with me."
Do you think Martin will finish his books before "Game of Thrones" ends, or will the HBO series outpace the novels?