Game of Thrones: The End is Near

David Benioff DB Weiss Game of ThronesThe Game of Thrones showrunners discuss how the fantasy drama is approaching its epic conclusion, with about 10 to 15 hours left of story to tell beyond season six.

In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, David Benioff and D.B. Weiss confirmed that their ambitious adaptation of George R.R. Martin’s fantasy saga A Song of Ice and Fire is approaching its finale.

When asked about how Game of Thrones compared to other successful, long-running shows like Mad Men, they told THR:

“We’re not walking away. We’re approaching the finish line. From the outset, our hope was to tell a complete story — beginning, middle and end. We are writing the final act now, and the last thing we want to do is stay on stage after the play is over. “

They went on about the challenges of adapting the novels while keeping up with a grueling schedule of shooting one season per year. It was clear that they were going to catch up with the books at one point and moving forward, they would have to make some changes in order to show a proper conclusion to the story. They discussed their plans of telling the tale of seven kingdoms in seven seasons:

“…In the beginning, we hoped that if the show worked, we’d get seven seasons to tell the tale. Seven kingdoms, seven gods, seven books — seven felt like a lucky number. The actual messiness of storytelling might not be quite that numerologically elegant, but we’re looking at somewhere between 70 and 75 hours before the credits roll for the last time.

The show has diverged from the books quite dramatically by this point, but it’s still George’s world: The characters he’s dreamt up in the world he created. At this point, given the fact that we’re outpacing the novels, we all see the upside in the divergence: book readers won’t be spoiled by what’s to come on the show, and the show audience won’t have to worry about spoilers from the unpublished books. And we’re very happy that the show has led so many people to discover George’s amazing books.”

Benioff and Weiss continued by comparing Game of Thrones with other fantasy series such as Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter, and saying that the appeal of Thrones is in its unpredictability, in the possibility for even major characters to die even if they were on the side of the light. Game of Thrones defies such fantasy tropes and that’s what makes it so engaging and unique.

Game of Thrones season six is currently airing every Sunday on HBO.