Nearly 10 million people tuned in to the premiere of House of the Dragon, the Games of Thrones prequel series, on Sunday night, making it the biggest audience for any new original HBO series ever.
Even though many fans were left disappointed with the series finale of Game of Thrones, they still flocked to social media to post about the new series. On Sunday, House of the Dragon trended on Twitter for 14 hours and was No. 1 on Google Trends, HBO said in a news release. And of course, more people will continue to catch the show in coming days via HBO Max.
House of the Dragon had a lot to prove because each episode costs between $15 million and $20 million to make, according to CNBC. And with HBO Max cutting shows and movies from its streaming platform the past few weeks to prepare for its merge with Discovery+ next summer, a lot is riding on the success of the show. HBO ordered House of the Dragon as a series a few months after the Game of Thrones finale in May 2019 and writing began in early 2020.
House of the Dragon takes place 200 years before Game of Thrones did and follows the beginning of the end of House Targaryen. It will show what led up to the Targaryen war of succession, also known as the Dance of the Dragons, events that were hinted at in Game of Thrones as characters discussed their world's history.
“It was wonderful to see millions of Game of Thrones fans return with us to Westeros last night," Casey Bloys, chief content officer of HBO and HBO Max, said in a news release. "House of the Dragon features an incredibly talented cast and crew who poured their heart and soul into the production, and we’re ecstatic with viewers’ positive response. We look forward to sharing with audiences what else [George R.R. Martin and showrunners Ryan Condal and Miguel Sapochnik] have in store for them this season.”