Money must grow on Weirwood trees for HBO!
According to James Andrew Miller‘s new book, Tinderbox: HBO’s Ruthless Pursuit of New Frontiers, the network spent more than $30 million on the pilot for a prequel series starring Naomi Watts which was unfortunately not picked up to go to series.
The unnamed fantasy prequel, which was set thousands of years before the events of Game of Thrones, planned to have Jane Goldman as showrunner and S.J. Clarkson as director. But after seeing a clip of the pilot, former WarnerMedia chairman Bob Greenblatt didn’t see the project working out.
“They had spent over $30 million on a Game of Thrones prequel pilot when I got there,” Greenblatt says in Miller’s book. “And when I saw a cut of it in a few months after I arrived, I said to [HBO chief content officer] Casey [Bloys], ‘This just doesn’t work and I don’t think it delivers on the premise of the original series.’ And he didn’t disagree, which actually was a relief.”
“So, we unfortunately decided to pull the plug on it,” he continues. “There was enormous pressure to get it right and I don’t think it would have worked.”