Winter is coming on Sunday!
Years of anticipation will culminate on Sunday evening when the first episode of HBO's adaptation of George R. R. Martin's Game of Thrones airs in the United States. The casting has been nearly perfect, the marketing push has been innovative, and all of the trailers and teasers have brought me to a near fever pitch of excitement. Review copies of the first few episodes have gone out to a few outlets and critical response has generally been positive, but it's also possible to evaluate the impact of the show quantitatively.
For example, we know that the 10 episode season will cover the events of the first 694 pages of Martin's A Song of Fire and Ice series. But did you know that the budget of the show is estimated to be about $50 or $60 million or that it's HBO's highest priced series in international markets, beating out The Sopranos by almost 50 percent?
Here are some more factoids about the show and the books as compiled by The Hollywood Reporter:
$2.5 million-plus: The amount episodes are fetching overseas.
3,188: Number of pages in the U.S. hardbacks of Books 1-4. (A Storm of Swords ran longest at 973 pages.)
583: The crew at its biggest.
294: Number of weeks between the publishing of Books 4 and 5. (Crows was published Nov. 8, 2005; Dragons will be released July 12, 2011.)[Yeah, right. I'll believe that when I see it. Damn you, Martin! *shakes fist*]
250: Approximate number of extras used on the biggest day of production
170: Total production days.
162: Total number of speaking roles in the series.
130: Number of helmets created for the series.
5: Number of topless women in the pilot.
4: Number of beheadings in the pilot.
3: Number of beheadings before the opening credits.
3: Number of times "winter is coming" mentioned in the pilot.
2: Number of sex scenes in the pilot.
All of that adds up to what I hope is an amazing production that lives up to the sex and swords of the novels. HBO hasn't officially announced that it will pick up production of the second season, which would dramatize the events of Martin's second book A Clash of Kings, but all indications point to good ratings both domestic and abroad.
I just hope that the show survives until we can see the events of A Storm of Swords. What happens in that book is just crazy. The production is going to need a whole lot more extras and some green-burning fire.
Look for The Escapist staff giving their impressions of the pilot on Monday morning.
Source: Hollywood Reporter