Game of Thrones Season 8 marks the climactic conclusion to the fantasy series fans have been following for years now. The production is deeply mired in secrecy, with details on the plot and its release coming few and far between. Back in November, HBO finally narrowed the release date down to April of 2019, but we still did not have a specific date until now.
The final season of Game of Thrones consists of just six episodes. However, each one is reportedly about 90 minutes long, meaning fans will essentially get six movies to wrap the story up. This means that, assuming there are no breaks in the final season, we will see the series finale sometime in May.
Of course, that will not be the end of Westeros as we know it. Fans can still look forward to the Game of Thrones prequel series, which films its pilot next month. The show is set thousands of years before the original series, and already has a break-out cast including Naomi Watts.
Like the original, the show's story comes from novelist George R.R. Martin, though the script was written by screenwriter Jane Goldman, who will serve as the showrunner as well if it goes to series. Martin is also co-executive producing an upcoming HBO series adaptation of Who Fears Death, a fantasy novel by Nnedi Okorafor.
HBO is clearly steering into its success with fantasy adaptations, although it is also working to increase its relevance among younger audiences. On Friday, the network teased the announcement of the Game of Thrones premiere date in a fake text message conversation between HBO's social media strategist and a person mysteriously referred to as "Boss."
I’m asking the important questions. pic.twitter.com/dYDiI11d1c— HBO (@HBO) January 11, 2019
"When's the premiere of GoT," the Twitter handle supposedly asked.
"You can find out Sunday before true detective," HBO said.
"Can you tell me now?"
"What happened to us?" the handle jokingly asks.
The screenshot ended with both parties sending an un-punctuated "What" and the dreaded "Read" notification underneath. Fans loved the bit, though many replied asking for a trailer as well as a release date.
Game of Thrones has a lot of threads to wrap up in its final season. The show will obviously need to take us through the war with the White Walkers, in which just about every major character will be fighting. We will also need to see how Jon Snow (Kit Harington) and Daenerys' (Emilia Clarke) relationship progresses, and whether or not they learn that they are related.
In addition, there is the question of who will wind up on the Iron Throne in the end — if there even is one when the dust settles. Of course, that question is tied directly to the fate of Queen Cersei Lannister (Lena Heady) and where she stands with her twin brother, Jaime (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau).
Game of Thrones Season 8 premieres on Sunday, April 14 on HBO.