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House of the Dragon Showrunner Says They're 'Done' with Time Jumps & Recasting

Ryan Condal also dismissed criticism that the show is too dark, claiming scenes looked "phenomenal" when submitted to HBO.
  • Olivia Cooke and Emma D'Arcy in House of the Dragon. (Photo: HBO)
    Olivia Cooke and Emma D'Arcy in House of the Dragon. (Photo: HBO)

    House of the Dragon is done with time jumps and recasting. 

    Following Sunday's Season 1 finale of the Game of Thrones spinoff, showrunner Ryan Condal told Deadline that the series would move forward in real time. "I will say, as a reward to our wonderful audience for following us through all the time jumps and recasts, they are done," said Condal. "We tell the story in real time from here forward."

    The first five episodes of House of the Dragon saw young performers Milly Alcock and Emily Carey play Rhaenyra Targaryen and Alicent Hightower respectively, though they were replaced by Emma D'Arcy and Olivia Cooke in Episode 6 after a 10-year time jump. Condal confirmed that the current cast would stay in their roles until the show's conclusion.

    "The actors are playing these characters until the end. We’re not recasting anybody. We’re not making any huge jumps forward in time," he said. "We are now in the Dance of the Dragons, and we’re gonna tell that story."

    Condal also addressed complaints that the show was "too dark", claiming the episodes looked "phenomenal" when they were submitted to HBO. "It is a bit of a rite of passage on this show... You make this perfect file in a perfect environment and on great equipment that’s perfectly calibrated by professionals. And then you release it into the wild, and it goes to different distributors who compress the file differently," he said. 

    "You’re also releasing it to tens of millions of different television sets that are all different technology, calibrated differently and set up differently in different viewing environments. It’s almost impossible to account for all those variables when you’re making the television show," Condal continued. "...I heard the note and we’re aware. But I will tell you that it looked phenomenal when we posted it and released it. And it looked great on my television, which has been professionally calibrated."

    House of Dragon Season 1 is streaming on HBO Max.

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    Jade Budowski is a freelance writer with a knack for ruining punchlines and harboring dad-aged celebrity crushes. She was previously a reporter/producer at Decider and is a member of the Television Critics Association. Follow her on Twitter: @jadebudowski.

    TOPICS: House of the Dragon, HBO, Ryan Condal