Game Of Thrones Prequel House Of The Dragon Premiere Set For August

HBO is bringing the fire-breathing dragons, white-haired royals, and mind-bending fantastical politics from the "Game of Thrones" universe back to the small screen in August. Warner Media has announced that "House of the Dragon," a spin-off of its blockbuster TV series, will premiere on August 21, with HBO Max serving as the exclusive streaming destination. The show is based on George R.R. Martin's novel called "Fire & Blood" and depicts the House Targaryen's throne tussle some 200 years before events covered by "Game of Thrones." The streaming giant has also released fresh character images and descriptions from its upcoming series that will unfold across 10 episodes in its first season.

The company has kept details about the plot under wraps, but if the source material is anything to go by, House Targaryen will again take the center stage. The story begins with the legendary Aegon I Targaryen, creator of the famous Iron Throne, and recounts the tale of his successors across multiple generations as they engage in a bloody war over claims to kingship. The conflict is better known as Dance of the Dragons, which is dominated by a civil war between Rhaenyra Targaryen — played by Emma D'Arcy — and her brother. Paddy Constine enacts the role of King Viserys Targaryen, who is described as a generally decent lad shouldering his grandfather's legacy.

Targaryens, dragons, and juicy streaming fiction

Matt Smith plays Prince Daemon Targaryen, brother of Viserys and the next in line to the throne. Touted to be an unmatched warrior and someone made notable by dragon blood, Smith's character sounds like a true Targaryen — and with that distinction, a real harbinger of fiery royal conflict. The rest of the cast includes Olivia Cooke as Alicent Hightower, Steve Toussaint as Lord Corlys Velaryon (The Sea Snake), and Eve Best in the role of Princess Rhaenys Targaryen. As one would expect from a show of this scale, "House of the Dragon" has a generous supporting cast to go with it.

The show is highly anticipated and will debut a month ahead of another hotly anticipated property, "The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power." Last month, Martin wrote on his blog that he has seen unfinished scenes from "House of the Dragon," and he sounded pretty happy with it. "I have seen rough cuts of a few of them, and I'm loving them," he wrote. Martin, who is credited as a co-creator and executive producer, praised the holy trifecta of acting, directing, and writing that delivered the show. A second season hasn't been officially confirmed, but will likely be announced soon after the series' streaming debut.