Like winter, a full Game of Thrones season 8 trailer has been a long time coming — and our long watch still has no end in sight.
But we might be lucky to be getting one at all.
Such is their desire to have audiences go into the final six episodes knowing as little as possible, the HBO hit’s Emmy-winning writer-producers David Benioff and Dan Weiss admit they sometimes wish trailers weren’t a thing.
“[David Lynch] was saying he wished there were no trailers,” Benioff told EW when asked about the fantasy drama’s final season trailer timing. “And it’s true, you could just go into a movie and see something completely fresh.”
“I wish there were no trailers,” Weiss said. “I just want somebody to say, ‘Trust me, go see this.'”
I noted that GoT is now big enough that the duo could arguably get away with that for season 8.
“We won’t though,” Weiss reassures. “Because then we went and saw Ready Player One with our kids and they played the Westworld trailer and it looked great. And we’re like, ‘Ah, we should do that.'”
So we are getting a trailer, despite some misgivings.
But why is the trailer taking so long? Production on the final season started in 2017 and wrapped last August, so a lack of footage (even factoring the need for special effects) shouldn’t be an issue.
Here’s one possibility, which is purely speculative on my part: Unlike almost all other shows and movies, the hype around Game of Thrones is so huge that HBO doesn’t need to release a trailer many months in advance to build awareness and anticipation. And given the showrunners’ reluctance to release more advance footage than is necessary, it seems probable that we might only get one full trailer before the show returns in April (perhaps a main trailer, then a second with just a bit of extra footage the week before premiere, along with a couple 30-second ad spots — or something to that extent).
So if you’re HBO, you wouldn’t want to drop your big trailer bomb too soon; you’d want footage that’s fresh and exciting to drive tune-in for the April 14 premiere — not too far in advance, yet still far out ahead to ramp up buzz (and to give the news media and talk shows something to play when they do pre-premiere pieces on the show).
We have seen a brief clip from the new season (of Sansa meeting Daenerys) and a moody promotional ad that reunites Jon, Sansa and Arya, both of which you can watch at the link below.