The House of the Dragon isn’t in danger of falling anytime soon. After the Game of Thrones prequel wowed audiences with its fiery premiere on Aug. 21, 2022, HBO wasted no time in renewing House of the Dragon for a second season. The network officially picked up Season 2 on Aug. 26, less than a week after the show’s first episode aired. And now with House of the Dragon’s Season 1 finale leaving viewers needing more, here’s what to know about HOTD Season 2, including its predicted release date, cast, and more updates.
The extremely early renewal was not really a surprise, since the HOTD premiere made history as HBO’s largest premiere audience ever, with 10 million people tuning in and another 10 million streaming it after four days. (FYI, the Game of Thrones finale raked in 19.3 million viewers, so those numbers are pretty amazing.)
But although a second season is in the bag, you’ll have to sit tight on your throne before it hits HBO screens. Fans already knew it would take a while for the show to return — and while it’s been a long wait, it sounds like it’s almost over now.
The premise of the prequel is based on author George R.R. Martin’s 2018 book Fire & Blood, set 200 years prior to Game of Thrones. The series dives into the drama in House Targaryen when the white-haired dragon-riders were at their most powerful. But although they ruled Westeros, their internal battles threatened to tear the family apart.
With so much anticipation and talk around the second season, here’s what to expect.
Season 2 Has A Release Window
Production on such a massive show takes a bit longer than normal, as fans well know. But thankfully, we do have a good idea of when the new season will land. HBO boss Casey Bloys revealed that Season 2 will arrive in “early summer” of 2024.
The Posters Promise Fire And Blood
HBO released the official first look at Season 2 on Dec. 1: a pair of posters featuring former friends turned bitter enemies Rhaenyra and Alicent. Fittingly, Rhaeyra’s poster teases her vengeance through fire, while Alicent’s focuses on blood.
There Will Be Fewer Episodes
The first bit of real information about Season 2 arrived on March 28, when Deadline reported the new run of episodes would be a bit shorter than Season 1. Unlike the first season’s 10 episodes, Season 2 will consist of only eight episodes. The report also claimed that a Season 3 renewal sounds very likely.
New Faces Are Joining The Cast
If you’ve read the book, you’ll know there are more than a few dramatic downfalls that lead to the main characters perishing. Hopefully, the series isn’t going in that direction yet. You’ll likely still see the lead cast members Matt Smith as Daemon Targaryen, Emma D’Arcy as Princess Rhaenyra, and Olivia Cooke as Alicent Hightower in Season 2.
Also expected to return are Eve Best as Rhaenys Targaryen, Rhys Ifans as Otto Hightower, Sonoya Mizuno as Mysaria, and well as the younger generation of Targaryen and Velaryon cousins (minus one, RIP): Ewan Mitchell as Aemond Targaryen, Tom Glynn-Carney as Aegon Targaryen, Phia Saban as Helaena Targaryen, Bethany Antonia as Baela Targaryen, Phoebe Campbell as Rhaena Targaryen, and Harry Collett as Jacaerys Velaryon.
Some new additions for the season include Gayle Rankin as Alys Rivers, Simon Russell Beale as Ser Simon Strong, Freddie Fox as Ser Gwayne Hightower, and Abubakar Salim as Alyn of Hull.
The Story Could Go Anywhere
The storyline of Season 2 depends on how many more seasons the show is expected to run for. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the series is currently proposed to run for about three or four seasons, but that could change.
Spoiler alert: The following includes spoilers from House of the Dragon’s Season 1 finale, as well as Fire & Blood, which could contain spoilers for the House of the Dragon seasons ahead. Season 2 is expected to follow the civil war that breaks out after King Viserys’ death, as half-siblings Rhaenyra and Aegon II fight for the throne. It’s unclear just how deep into Rhaenyra and Alicent’s bitter feud will go, but their legendary conflict will definitely be a central element in Season 2, considering the latter’s son killed the former’s son in the Season 1 finale. Accident or not, Rhaenyra’s going to be out for blood.
Hopefully, HBO will provide HOTD cast and filming updates as Season 2 production moves forward. Keep your eyes peeled, because the dragons are only just starting to take flight.
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