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May Day

ape
It's May, it's May, hurray.

What's more, I actually met a deadline. I turned in the first draft of my script for episode eight of A GAME OF THRONES to David and Dan on the day it was due. Today, as it happens.

It's too long and too expensive, but that's true of every first draft teleplay and screenplay that I ever wrote. I've titled it "The Pointy End," though I don't know if that will endure. Last I heard, it hadn't been decided whether we'd be using episode titles or not.

One monkey off my back. At least until it's time for rewrites, and the second draft.

Other monkeys are still frolicking up there, including Kong. He was a king in his world, but we'll teach him fear...

Comments

( 48 comments — Leave a comment )
aghrivaine
May. 1st, 2010 09:31 pm (UTC)
It's long since past due that there was significant monkey-related news, so that at least is cause to celebrate!
justynv
May. 1st, 2010 09:34 pm (UTC)
King Kong
Well, good job on the draft, George. I seriously can not wait for the series. Just in time with Lost wrapping. I am absolutely buying HBO and telling them I do so for Game. That would be killer if it went all 7(?) seasons.

Who knows, even if it doesn't, I would think there's a good chance another station might nab it and finish it- maybe showtime or something? A guy can hope, right?

And tame that damn, dirty ape already!!!
latriplette
May. 1st, 2010 09:45 pm (UTC)
after a while..
There is a very nice song by the indi/garage group "The Kills" called "MOnkey 23", part of their first album "Keep on your mean side" which nicely talks about having monkeys on on's back.. Nice to be able to get rid of at least one of them..
I really enjoyed your interview at DragonPage; I actually agree with what you say about impatience being at lest in part age related. I am of the internet, "on.demand", "entitlement" generation: in fact, I actually was an impatiant and angry fan of you who on this very blog of yours called for an uprisal of mountains and seas..
But I believe that there is a way, in aging, in life (I hate how rethorical all of this sounds, but, this is it..) in which we are called back to our matterly world, where, if fortunate, we learn to understand how the core, the "heart of every thing", to use Natsume Soseki's words, lays not in the intent, not in a demand, not in the pure will. Is more of an acquired taste, which has to be assumed, and consumed, and waited for. Because it is the only way anything would worth something..
Then, nothing but thanks; I really hope you succeed in being rememvered for an outstanding, if not perfect, work. In my eyes you already have..
escarboucle
May. 1st, 2010 09:45 pm (UTC)
Woah, what, you met a deadline? Awesome XD Honestly, I don't know if I could ever do that XD

As for your screenplay, isn't it natural that it'd be too long and too expensive? I mean, it's natural to get excited over this, right?

Anyway, good news are good! I can't wait to see this on screen. Episode 8, if I remember right, uh? XD Still a long way to go before I can finally watch it~~
aulus_poliutos
May. 1st, 2010 10:00 pm (UTC)
Congrats on finishing the script monkey.

Kong - that's a nice image. Maybe Dany can tweak its fur a bit. (I've started to call mine Cthulhu because of all those plot tentacles.) :)
mizkit
May. 1st, 2010 10:01 pm (UTC)
Bahahaha. "The Pointy End". *is dying for this show* :)
surgeonufo
May. 1st, 2010 10:07 pm (UTC)
I don't know whether or not this has been addressed already, but will there be as much "creative license" taken with Song as there's been with Legend of the Seeker -- as in, an almost completely unrecognizable plot, mutilating the characters, etc. I understand some stuff has to end up getting dropped, but will there be unnecessary additions, also?
grrm
May. 1st, 2010 11:01 pm (UTC)
So far the only character added who was not in the books is Ros, the Red-Headed Whore, who has a scene with Tyrion in the pilot.

I gather she may be back in later episodes as well.

But hey, I liked Ros, the Red-Headed Whore. Especially after I met Esme Bianco, who plays her.

Maybe I'll add her to the books...
thedragonweaver
May. 2nd, 2010 03:55 am (UTC)
How can you *not* like someone entitled "The Red-Headed Whore"?

Almost as good as "The Angry Barmaid."
nycfalcon
May. 2nd, 2010 11:33 pm (UTC)
...or "Whore With a Crabby Attitude" even.
9fires
May. 3rd, 2010 03:05 am (UTC)
... or 'Whore with a Heart of Cold' or 'Poxy Whore'
lord_varys
May. 2nd, 2010 08:13 am (UTC)
Really?
Do you already know in which brothel she is supposed to work? I gather if she was one of Chataya's girls we likely should have met her in the books as she was there since the beginning of the series. But you never actually showed us who was working in all of Littlefinger's brothels, so I really can see her having some of the breasts Ned was supposed to fondle back in AGoT ;-).
tdquasar
May. 2nd, 2010 12:25 pm (UTC)
I'm afraid we better be prepared that the "almost completely unrecognizable plot, mutilating the characters, etc." will come out in the end.

I've been watching almost all the HBO adaptations lately and their goal is never to repeat what was written in the original books, they somehow want to give back the same feeling, but with a different story/plot etc.

Now, the only question is if the fans of the books will like this new "version" or not. We will see.

grrm
May. 2nd, 2010 06:58 pm (UTC)
I really don't think the "almost unrecognizable plot" thing is anything you need fear on this project.

The first season, at least, will hew quite close to the books, from what I have seen.

Admittedly, it will grow harder to remain faithful in later seasons, if the series is renewed. As the books progress and the original characters scatter, more and more secondary and tertiary characters become involved, more and more settings are seen, and the "butterfly effect" comes into play... whereas what seems like a small and innocous change in season one or two turns out to have major consequences in season five, when the minor character who was changed/ cut in season one is supposed to push to the fore and play a significant role.

No one is saying it will be easy. But the intent is there.

But hey, David and Dan knew the job was dangerous when they took it.
mattamus
May. 3rd, 2010 12:24 am (UTC)
I don't know if you have had a chance to see The Wire on HBO, but that show was masterful at handling an enormous cast of characters throughout the seasons. Main characters became minor characters, and vice versa. However, I don't know how they handled the contracts when filming each season.
xraytheenforcer
May. 1st, 2010 10:12 pm (UTC)
congratulations on the anti-monkey brigade.
midnight_birth
May. 1st, 2010 10:17 pm (UTC)
Good for you! :D Meeting dead-lines is so satisfying, isn't it? (I know it is for me, since I do it rarely.) Can't wait for the show!!
jerec84
May. 1st, 2010 10:27 pm (UTC)
I really hope that episode title sticks.
nerdcorehiphop
May. 1st, 2010 11:43 pm (UTC)
<3 good puns.
not_yer_bitch
May. 1st, 2010 10:45 pm (UTC)
hoooooorrray!!!! go go GRRM!!! ^_^
I too am happy to hear that you are making progress!!! XD

I and my kids will make some chili con queso to celebrate!!! btw, do you have Parris' recipe for us to use? We rather want that!! ^_^ (thanks phipps!!!!) ^_^
werthead
May. 1st, 2010 11:00 pm (UTC)
Is it really too long and too expensive, or is that 20-year-old CBS notes coming back to haunt you?

Good news, and let's hope to have that monkey biplaned off the Empire State soon :-)
grrm
May. 2nd, 2010 02:20 am (UTC)
Since an hour long show on HBO can actually run an hour, instead of 46 minutes as on the CBS shows I worked on in the 80s and 90s, the draft is only a little long.

It probably is too expensive, though. Too many characters, too many settings, too many SFX shots. What meathead wrote this novel, anyway?
megmca
May. 2nd, 2010 08:10 am (UTC)
You should explain to them how much less expensive this is than your original idea that involved a massive sea battle with burning ships ramming each other and a bridge of boats.... wait, have they read the second book yet?
werthead
May. 2nd, 2010 12:34 pm (UTC)
Is the Battle of the Green Fork in your episode then? I was thinking it would be interesting to see how the TV series was going to handle that with Tywin's hundreds-strong cavalry charge and Tyrion and his wildmen cutting their way through a bunch of northmen.

I wonder if Dan and Dave have let the CGI team know about the Blackwater yet, if we get a second season? "So boys, what do you think about blowing up a river and incinerating thousands of people with using our whole CGI budget for the season?" "We can do it as long as you don't let George write the episode. It will be too long and expensive then." ;-)
trebla1972
May. 2nd, 2010 03:52 pm (UTC)
I believe the major battle scenes would be Cersei's coup of Kings Landing and the Dothraki slaughter of the Lambmen. George mentioned those plot lines as well as the Nightwatch finding the Otho and Jafer Flowers when we chatted with him in Chicago.

"The Pointy End" would make sense considering what Arya has to do to escape the carnage.
lt111
May. 1st, 2010 11:06 pm (UTC)
KONG
On the day that Kong is fully humbled, you should treat yourself to chilled monkey brains and a banana!
bug_totem
May. 1st, 2010 11:13 pm (UTC)
Let the God give you strength. And speed :)
tehseal
May. 2nd, 2010 05:10 pm (UTC)
And hope that the God of Many Faces doesn't decide he needs another... donation. :(
dscotton
May. 1st, 2010 11:22 pm (UTC)
I like having episode titles - they make it easier to discuss the show with other die hard fans. If someone knows what I'm talking about when I mention "Chain of Command" or "Surprise / Innocence" then I know we have some common ground. :)
vandor
May. 2nd, 2010 03:14 pm (UTC)
Meh
Episode titles are great for the diehard fanboys, but sometimes it actually makes it harder for diehard fans to communicate with fans who aren't as interested.

For example I'm a huge Band of Brothers fan so I'll make a reference the episode "Bastogne" and I'll get a blank face and have to be like "...the snow episode... about the medic"

Either way, we can always be nerds and call this episode by that title no matter what they finally call it if anything at all.
blaineo3887
May. 2nd, 2010 12:29 am (UTC)
Hahahaha! I got a good chuckle out of that Kong line at the end! Any chance you'll be doing a post about what you've been reading lately? It's been a while. :)
stevewood
May. 2nd, 2010 03:35 am (UTC)
You need to take care of those monkeys quick...they uh aren't very sanitary.
epiphanist1248
May. 2nd, 2010 04:24 am (UTC)
"O frabjous day! Callooh! Callay!"
pitaenigma
May. 2nd, 2010 07:36 am (UTC)
Monkeys on your back
Please don't use that saying any more. I was only beginning to forgive you for ruining it for me with "The Monkey Treatment" when my mom decided to start using it. It's even worse when someone knows about it.
....
I hope these monkeys are the good kind.
Also, how awesome would a film adaptation of The Monkey Treatment be? I mean, I don't really have an SFX budget for the monkey, but I could totally see myself making a student film of it. With permission, of course...
Now you've started me obsessing about that story again.
gumbee1
May. 2nd, 2010 08:30 am (UTC)
I am so excited, George. I re-read the series yearly in anticipation of the show and "A Dance." I say take your time and do it right. I don't have a tv and only watch boxing and "the daily show" on family and friend's tvs. I get my news on line and radio(npr). I will be buying a tv soon, though, and will be getting hbo as well. Boxing and "A game of thrones", i think i am in heaven!!! All this excitement but I cant get my mind off our crazy neighbors. What is going on in arizona! Aghhhh! Any ways I can't wait! Keep it up!
siamkor
May. 2nd, 2010 10:33 am (UTC)
Kong...
About Kong, you could have him grab Cersei and climb the Tower of the Hand. That would distract him a bit.

Then you could burn the Tower with wildfire. :D
spiralled
May. 2nd, 2010 07:19 pm (UTC)
Re: Kong...
Oh, I like this.
eran5005
May. 2nd, 2010 12:05 pm (UTC)
Speaking about the HBO production
I guess now would a more appropriate to re-ask my question about the Syrio Forel character - is there someone? If there is, who is it?

Kudos on meeting the deadline, and hopefully the guys at HBO won't be too cheap to make the production in the quality it deserves.
lady_of_payne
May. 2nd, 2010 12:57 pm (UTC)
Intresting how much will final version Change? I thought very much
taser8
May. 2nd, 2010 06:21 pm (UTC)
Dealines and writing
Mr. Martin, I certainly wouldn't want to cast any kind of "why aren't you writing ADwD" aspersions, but in all seriousness I am curious about how you're approaching the balance between writing (hopefully!) the full run of the show and getting the rest of the series written before the tv show catches up? It seems like getting ASoIaF, the books, finished before the show catches up would be a challenging endeavor even if there weren't any distractions - and I suspect all of us agree that we love the idea of you writing the show, for accuracy and authenticity's sake!
Whatever comes, I am excited to see and read all of it!
hippoiathanatoi
May. 2nd, 2010 10:44 pm (UTC)
Re: Dealines and writing
Apologies if I'm misunderstanding, but the "full run of the show" makes it sound to me as if you believe GRRM is writing every episode. He's just writing one episode per season, at least according to current plans.
taser8
May. 3rd, 2010 09:00 pm (UTC)
Re: Dealines and writing
Ah. That would be different then, wouldn't it? Neeeever mind...
gdshaffer
May. 3rd, 2010 05:07 am (UTC)
I had to go and create a LJ account just to comment on how awesome an episode title "The Pointy End" is. It comes off as whimsical at first glance but has much darker implications for Arya in particular, and will have fans of the books smiling in anticipation of what they know is coming while people experiencing the story for the first time will recall the conversation between Arya and Jon and will tingle in anticipation of its implications. Fantastic!
sam_crecelius
May. 3rd, 2010 06:39 pm (UTC)
Screen adaptation
This post actually gives me a chance to ask a question I've been wondering about:

With any major work of literature being adapted to film/television, there are bound to be alterations/cuts. Have you given much thought, in terms of SoIaF, about that? Specifically, are there any particular bits that you look and, and think 'that probably won't make the series'? Either because of time/budget constraints, or because it doesn't translate well from the page to the screen? Not looking for any inside info here, just your own personal opinion.
loco73
May. 4th, 2010 11:47 pm (UTC)
Hip, Hip, Hoooray!!!!!
Well done sir! I get pissed drunk in your honour! May you have many happy, healthy and productive days ahead! Be well always!
sephen
May. 5th, 2010 04:09 am (UTC)
Thank you for updating your billboard sir - I am very happy to have another chance to get the 2009 calendar and hey this is a good excuse for me to order that signed copy of TUF VOYAGING I've been promising myself I'd get! I just got paid for this construction contract I'm on so now I can afford it!
laughingfalcon
May. 6th, 2010 08:48 pm (UTC)
Good Job!
Well done! I rather hope they do keep the title from Jon's first lesson with Arya. Although 8 episodes in I expect it will be when Arya remembers that lesson. Mmm, I can't wait to see your epic work come to life in a new media! <3
viva_knitwear
Jun. 2nd, 2010 08:13 pm (UTC)
firstly, you're a hero for meeting the deadline and cannot wait to see the episode.
secondly, you're now my arch nemesis because you got to meet esme bianco/ros and i didn't so i'm afraid i have no choice but to challenge you to a duel. how does laptops at dawn sound?
( 48 comments — Leave a comment )

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