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Game of Thrones prequel House of the Dragon gets a summer premiere date

Emma D’Arcy as Princess Rhaenyra Targaryen and Matt Smith is Prince Daemon Targaryen in House of the Dragon
(Image credit: HBO)

Prepare for fire and blood, because HBO's Game of Thrones prequel House of the Dragon has set a release date. Appropriately, the Targaryen family saga will start unfurling during the burning hot month of August. 

While most fans were disappointed by the Game of Thrones ending, House of the Dragon could win them back.

HBO revealed the U.S. date — Sunday, August 21 — via new poster art on Twitter (opens in new tab) that depicts a molten dragon egg cracking open. In the U.K., House of the Dragon will premiere on August 22 on Sky Atlantic and streaming service NOW.

Interestingly, the show will premiere just 12 days before Prime Video's highly-anticipated Lord of the Rings series, the Rings of Power.

The release date for House of the Dragon was revealed with this poster of a glowing egg.

(Image credit: HBO)

House of the Dragon is set some 200 years before the events of Game of Thrones. Based on Martin's novel Fire & Blood, the story chronicles the ancestors of Daenerys Targaryen. Specifically, the series will focus on the build-up to a brutal part of Targaryen history: the family civil war known as the Dance of Dragons.

Emma D’Arcy stars as Princess Rhaenyra Targaryen, who seeks to succeed her father King Viserys I (Paddy Considine) to the Iron Throne. Matt Smith is Prince Daemon Targaryen, her uncle and the male heir presumptive. 

Also in the political thick of it is Queen Alicent Hightower, Viserys I's second wife who wants the throne for her own son. As a girl, she was known as the "most comely girl in court." Her father, Ser Otto Hightower (Rhys Ifans) served as Viserys' Hand of the King.

Olivia Cooke as Alicent Hightower and Rhys Ifans as Otto Hightower in House of the Dragon

(Image credit: HBO)

The family intrigue also includes Princess Rhaenys Velaryon (Eve Best), passed over to succed her grandfather King Jaehaerys. She's married to Lord Corlys Velaryon (Steve Toussaint), known ominously as the Sea Snake. 

And nobody should count out the schemes of the Lannisters, Lord Jason Lannister (Jefferson Hall) and twin Tyland.

House of the Dragon is the first completed spinoff of the massively popular Game of Thrones. HBO developed and shot another pilot, reportedly set during the Long Night, but ended up scrapping it. 

Showrunners Ryan Condal and Miguel Sapochnik have previously talked about how their show will follow in the footsteps the flagship. "I think we were very respectful of what the original show is,” Sapochnik told The Hollywood Reporter (opens in new tab). “It wasn’t broken, so we’re not trying to reinvent the wheel. House of the Dragon has its own tone that will evolve and emerge over the course of the show."

House of the Dragon's premiere in August means that a good chunk of season 1's 10 episodes will air concurrently with The Rings of Power. This fall looks to be one for the (fantasy) books.

Read next: George RR Martin is a fan of House of the Dragon, but will it connect with fans?

Kelly Woo
Senior Writer

Kelly is a senior writer covering streaming media for Tom’s Guide, so basically, she watches TV for a living. Previously, she was a freelance entertainment writer for Yahoo, Vulture, TV Guide and other outlets. When she’s not watching TV and movies for work, she’s watching them for fun, seeing live music, writing songs, knitting and gardening.