Home Television Exclusive: George R. R. Martin Misses “Game of Thrones” Prequel Premiere After...

The one person missing from tonight’s “House of the Dragon” premiere was author George R. R. Martin. At the screening of the “Game of Thrones” prequel at the Academy Museum, HBO chief Casey Bloys announced that Martin, 73, contracted COVID at Comic Con in San Diego over the weekend.

There was a gasp in the audience but everyone was assured that Martin was okay and would recover. Martin had spent too much time being adored by fans up close and in person.

Meanwhile, all focus was on the “Game of Thrones” prequel which was met with thunderous applause and enthusiastic comments when the screening was done. The entire cast was on hand including Matt Smith, who told our Leah Sydney that playing Prince Daemon Targaryen isn’t dissimilar to playing Prince Philip in “The Crown.” Smith said, “It’s not that different, I still wear a wig and I bow.” (The show takes place 200 years before the events we saw at Westeros.)

“House of the Dragon” debuts August 21st on HBO Max as a series, and should be a blockbuster. My big question from 3,000 miles away was about the music since the “GoT” theme and the rest of the score became its own character in the first series. I am assured it’s similar and “excellent.”

There is no question that this is a big deal for Warner Discovery, new owner of HBO. Among the guests was David Zaslav, who now owns and runs the entertainment empire, and Chris Licht, president of CNN under Zaslav.

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