Wondering how Game of Thrones will end? So were we! For a Boston University TV course, students wrote six full scripts for season 8, cast awesome New York and Boston actors, then live-streamed a staged reading worldwide in April 2018. HBO sent us the Iron Throne! Fans cheered, cried, and called us brutal for making heartbreaking, character-driven decisions about who lives and who dies. Our season 8 episodes have drawn more than 3.6 million views! Now you can binge-watch our vision for the final season, read the annotated scripts, and go behind the scenes with our inclusive writers, director, cast, and showrunner. Welcome to Game of Thrones: The Virtual Final Season. For updates, sign up at bit.ly/GoT_VFS.
Our production is the culmination of a Boston University Department of Film & Television course about HBO’s mega-hit TV series. A veteran TV writer/producer created the course and led nine talented BU TV writers through a writers room experience. In less than 12 weeks, they created their vision for a final Game of Thrones season. They broke and wrote six complete scripts for a six-episode season arc, then cast compelling actors for a staged reading. Our cast members are featured in the introductions for each episode.
The outstanding BUTV10 production team executed an impressive live two-day show. We invite you to watch all six episodes of the staged reading on our site; they’re available free of charge. Each episode runs about an hour.
You can also read all six spec scripts on our site. (All six annotated scripts are available now. The web versions look great on desktop computers. If you’d like to read the annotations on your phone or tablet, you may want to download the PDF versions and open them in the free Adobe Acrobat Reader app.) The writers went to great lengths to create satisfying, logical outcomes that complement the novels and the show. Each script is annotated to share insight and context from the show’s seven seasons and George R. R. Martin’s novels, short stories, and reference books.
That was fantastic. …Mind, I think (and definitely hope) it was much more brutal than D&D will be. Bravo! – LL
RIP Liam Bowes 1991-2020
We’re devastated to report that Liam Bowes passed away suddenly November 19, 2020. He was 29. Liam was a talented actor, musician, and writer. He shared his gifts with our 2018 Game of Thrones: Virtual Final Season production playing a main lead – Jon Snow. At the time, Jon Snow was one of the most popular and recognizable characters in the world. We knew casting the role for our production would be challenging.
Fortunately, Liam answered our casting notice. We were stunned by Liam’s audition, and we knew immediately we had found our King in the North. His portrayal showcased Liam’s empathy, and he offered another compelling version of this iconic character. Liam became the first actor ever to interpret R+L=J. He shouldered this responsibility marvelously. We are grateful he joined our cast and happy to have his performance preserved.
Liam will be missed by his family, castmates, bandmates, friends, and fans. His family asks that you consider making a donation in Liam’s memory to the National Alliance of Mental Health at nami.org or to NAMI of Massachusetts, 529 Main St. #1M17, Boston MA 02019. For details, go to mcnamara-sparrell.com/obituary/Liam-Bowes.
Director Marissa Dianas and her terrific crew tackled two days of live television in three-hour blocks with no do-overs. She coordinated four cameras and called the shots with 14 actors. Marissa didn’t just deliver – she crushed it. And we knew she would.
Marissa was the director for all of the Boston University men’s and women’s basketball broadcasts. So, Marissa mapped our Game of Thrones staged reading like an action-packed sporting event. She captured important moments among our actors. She put viewers in the middle of the action. She and her stellar BUTV10 production team helped bring our season to life.
Our event launched a brand-new Boston University arts space (formerly the Art Institute of Boston) at 700 Beacon Street near Fenway Park. We projected the live performances from the upstairs theater to the 100-seat gallery viewing area. The Iron Throne – thanks, HBO! – anchored our exhibition, which also featured:
- dramatic wall coverings featuring Winterfell, a weirwood tree, and the Night’s Watch oath, courtesy of the Loews Boston Hotel;
- intricate Game of Thrones 3-D pop-up cards, courtesy of Lovepop;
- a hand-sculpted Game of Thrones cake, courtesy of Oakleaf Cakes; and
- stunning limited-edition poster art, courtesy of Nikittysan.
Here’s a short behind-the-scenes look with several of our writers courtesy of Efrain Hernandez (@EfrainIsFrank):