Winter is finally here! The Game of Thrones fandom went into frenzy weeks before the premiere of season 8 (the last season) of the show. The first episode of the season shattered records all over the world. In the U.K fans got up at 3 am to watch the show as it aired, to avoid spoilers the next day on the internet.
Game of Thrones had always topped the charts when it came to the most expensive T.V of all time, with the budget for each episode ranged up to $12 million. Season 8 knocked the budget of all previous seasons’ right out of the ballpark.
It seems the Westeros economy is flourishing: the final season of Game of Thrones season 8 is the most expensive in its history – and has the potential to break TV records.
The seventh season of the HBO fantasy saga cost an eye-watering $12 million (£7.5 million) per episode, but that sum seems insignificant in comparison to the shows final season, whose first episode recently.
Variety reports that the eighth season has cost more than $15 million (£11.2 million) per episode, the biggest per-episode budget ever allocated to a TV show.
Despite its massive budget, the show will only have six episodes in its last season – down from eight or ten in previous years – however, the show’s team have hinted that episodes will not be of average length, rather fans should expect a feature-length epic. HBO clearly wanted Game of Thrones to go out with a bang!
At a fan convention last July, Game of Thrones sound designer Paula Fairfield confirmed the buzz surrounding the length of the episodes and said that the grand finale of GOT would be 85 minutes long.
So, what makes GOT so expensive? Is it because of the stunning sets, the breathtaking location or the digital animations? A lot of the show’s record-breaking budget goes towards the stars’ salaries of the cast (more specifically) and the crew.
Last year, a report in the Express alleged five of the leading cast members – Emilia Clarke (Daenerys), Kit Harington (Jon Snow), Peter Dinklage (Tyrion Lannister), Lena Headey (Cersei Lannister), and Nikolaj Coster-Waldau (Jaime Lannister) – would receive $2 million each for the seventh season. Now, for the last and final season, the stars of the show will most likely be earning much more than just mere $2 million per episode.
HBO has tried to keep everything regarding Game of Thrones season 8 under wraps to avoid leaks. The network even went as far as to tape multiple endings of the finale to ensure no word got out from the sets.
Ever wondered which episode of the previous seasons has been the most expensive in GOT history? The episode called “Battle of the Bastards,” the next-to-last in the sixth season was previously most costly Game of Thrones episode.
Rather than dividing the money equally for each episode that season, HBO pulled funds from the nine other episodes to increase the budget for “Battle of the Bastards.”