Thrones reigns fourth sea­son

The Gold Coast Bulletin - Play Magazine - - TELEVISION -

EPIC me­dieval-fan­tasy drama se­ries Game of Thrones will re­turn for a fourth sea­son, US ca­ble chan­nel HBO has con­firmed.

The crit­i­cally ac­claimed show – which chron­i­cles the myr­iad power strug­gles in the fic­tional con­ti­nents of Wes­teros and Es­sos – re­turned for its third sea­son in Aus­tralia on April 1.

HBO spokesman Quentin Schaf­fer told AFP the se­ries would likely be­gin film­ing later this year, which would put it on course for a re­lease date in 2014.

‘‘We are pick­ing it up for 10 episodes. It will likely be back in pro­duc­tion this sum­mer,’’ Schaf­fer says.

Based on A Song of Ice and Fire, the se­ries of fan­tasy nov­els by Ge­orge RR Martin, Game of Thrones has be­come one of the most talked-about se­ries on US tele­vi­sion since its de­but in 2011.

The first episode of the third sea­son broad­cast in the US on Sun­day at­tracted 4.4 mil­lion view­ers, mak­ing it the most-watched episode in the se­ries’ short his­tory. In Aus­tralia that episode picked up more than 200,000 view­ers on Mon­day on pay TV chan­nel Show­case.

The show has also be­come the most pi­rated tele­vi­sion se­ries in the world. Ac­cord­ing to web­site Tor­ren­tfreak, the fi­nal episode of the sec­ond se­ries in 2012 was il­le­gally down­loaded by some 4.3 mil­lion peo­ple.

‘‘I prob­a­bly shouldn’t be say­ing this, but it is a com­pli­ment of sorts,’’ says HBO di­rec­tor of pro­gram­ming Michael Lom­bardo.

‘‘The de­mand is there. And it cer­tainly didn’t neg­a­tively im­pact the DVD sales. (Piracy is) some­thing that comes along with hav­ing a wildly suc­cess­ful show on a sub­scrip­tion net­work.’’

Game of Thrones: Se­ries 3: Mon­days, 4.20pm, Show­case.

Kit Har­ring­ton as Jon Snow

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