Game of Thrones fans were robbed of a battle between 50 Direwolves and the Night King's dragon. There have been a lot of gripes about the final season of the hit HBO series, but we're only starting to learn more about what could have been. The Direwolf battle was supposed to go down during the Long Night episode, which means many fans might not have been able to see the fight anyway. Director Miguel Sapochnik has already defended his use of the darkness in that episode.
Now, Miguel Sapochnik is probably going to have a lot more fans to answer to after admitting to leaving the huge Direwolf battle out of the final Game of Thrones season. The Direwolves were a fan-favorite aspect of the show and Ghost kind of got a raw deal from Jon Snow, although it all worked out for the better in the end. Sapochnik had this to say about the decision to cut the Direwolf battle.
"There were many things that happened, that people would have been so happy to have happen. Attack of Direwolves and crazy stuff. At some point you're like, '50 Direwolves attacking an undead dragon does not make a good movie.'"
Speaking of Ghost, Miguel Sapochnik did not mention where the rest of the Direwolves would have come from. Whatever the case may be, it sounds like it would have been a pretty hard thing to set up in an episode that already had a lot going on. It might have been for the best for Sapochnik's sanity when all is said and done. However, showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss were fighting for bigger and better. Sapochnik explains.
"Dave and Dan were heading towards the finish line and they were unrelenting in what they expected of us. Then their mantra to us is 'It's going to kill us, but it's going to be great.' And we were like, 'No, no, it's actually going to kill us if we don't stop. They were completely ruthless when it came to that kind of thing of, 'No, we want this, we want this.' And at the same time, there were moments of realization that we physically can't do some of these things and other things we can."
Game of Thrones season 8 left a lot of fans scratching their heads and more than a few were pretty angry with the way it all went down. A fan petition to have the entire season rewritten and reshot gained well over 1.6 million signatures, which says quite a bit. The show had been criticized ever since George R.R. Martin's source material dried up, but season 8 saw a lot of fans go over the edge with anger and resentment.
Game of Thrones is over now and there was no way they were going to be able to live up to the hype when all is said and done. But, a battle consisting of 50 Direwolves and the Night King's dragon would have been a pretty nice consolation prize. At least we could go back to check the battle out during repeat viewings. You can check out the rest of the interview with Miguel Sapochnik over at the Indie Wire Podcast.