The showrunners of HBO’s Game of Thrones are rather impressed by the IMAX conversion of their hit series. Executive producers David Benioff and Dan Weiss went on camera to praise the result of the theater company’s conversion process after seeing their labor of love on the super-sized screen for the first time last week.
“I’m still kind of in shock,” Weiss said in the above exclusive clip after watching a private preview screening. “It’s a completely different viewing experience, one that’s so immersive and so superior.”
IMAX put two Thrones episodes through its proprietary DMR conversion process for a special screening event that begins Thursday night. Technicians extracted an unprecedented degree of visual and audio detail from the show’s original source material. As Benioff and Weiss point out below, by the time each Thrones episode is complete, they’ve labored over every detail for a year and seen each episode hundreds of times—so it’s not easy to show them any element that they haven’t seen many times before.
The showrunners also praised the work of their Emmy-nominated composer Ramin Djawadi, whose soundtrack is likewise further detailed by the cinema’s immersive audio presentation. “Ramin’s fingerprints are all over this show,” Benioff said, and Weiss added, “If you have a 25-foot mammoth attacking a 700-foot wall, you better have the music that can shoulder that image.”
Game of Thrones starts its week-long IMAX run at 10 p.m. on Thursday night. The screening includes two episodes from the fourth season (“The Watchers on the Wall” and the season finale “The Children”). The episodes will be followed by the much-anticipated season five trailer.
“The communal experience of being surrounded by other people who are gasping at the same moments is the way it’s really meant to be seen,” Benioff noted. “To feel like you’re there is just something you don’t get while watching on television.”
Pre-sales of the event have been quite strong, with some theaters already selling out some screenings. Fan interest crashed IMAX’s website on three separate occasions. “I know everybody calls Thrones a television show, but it looks like a movie,” said IMAX Entertainment CEO Greg Foster. “It’s unbelievably cinematic. It blew us away.”