HBO has reportedly canceled the Game of Thrones prequel starring Noami Watts, but make no mistake, the network still has big plans for the franchise. As previously reported, this particular spin-off would have been set thousands of years before the original series in an era referred to as the golden "Age of Heroes."

While featuring mostly all-new characters, the series would have supposedly explored the origin of the White Walkers and the mysteries of the East, further expanding the mythology of Westeros. According to reports, HBO wasn't happy with the pilot developed for the Watts-led spin-off, making the decision to axe the show now rather than order some retooling for a reshoot. Still, other planned prequels in the works should ensure the franchise will ultimately live on in one way or another.

As of this writing, HBO is nearing a deal to develop another Game of Thrones Prequel pilot from author George R. R. Martin and Ryan J. Condal. This particular spin-off wouldn't be set quite as far back in the past compared to the original series, focusing on the reign of the Targaryen kings in the years before the start of GoT. Other prequel shows could also be on the way, as it has previously been reported HBO was looking to develop up to five successor series for the hit show.

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At this time, one of the five has been canceled while the second idea is close to a deal, so with so many possibilities on the table, chances are we'll see at least one of these spin-offs eventually make its way to air. Perhaps we'll never find out how the White Walkers came to be, but there's clearly still plenty of Westeros that has been left unexplored.

News of the prequel getting axed have been generating some mixed reactions from Game of Thrones fans online. Some of those who were disappointed with the final season of the main series might feel leery about continuing the franchise with a prequel, suggesting the magic is gone and it's now best to just leave it be. In contrast to that, others are hopeful that a new story set in Westeros under a new creative vision could revitalize the franchise. Even if many viewers weren't happy with the way GoT ended, watching new episodes each season made for a very fun experience for many years. With any luck, the new show(s) will be able to recapture that same feeling.

Oddly enough, this is not the only cancellation relating to Game of Thrones that's dominating today's headlines. It has also just been revealed GoT showrunners David Benioff and D. B. Weiss will not be moving forward with their planned Star Wars movie trilogy after all, which has similarly brought about a wave of mixed reactions from filmgoers. Previously, it had been reported the duo had signed up to write and produce a new trilogy for the franchise with an all-new creative direction. According to Benioff and Weiss, the decision came down to scheduling, as they apparently won't have time to develop something like Star Wars, instead focusing on their new partnership with Netflix.

For better or for worse, Benioff and Weiss won't be involved in any of the planned Game of Thrones spin-offs either. It's also worth noting capturing lightning in a bottle twice is nearly impossible, but with multiple prequels still on the way, let's hope at least one turns out to be a winner. The news of the Naomi Watts-led prequel getting axed comes to us from The Hollywood Reporter.

Jeremy Dick at TVweb
Jeremy Dick