Anyone remotely interested in Game of Thrones knows that the TV series and book series upon which it is based have come to an impasse. Fans are entering Game of Thrones Season 6 at a point where the fantasy drama has caught up with the novels upon which it is based. And it has already been confirmed that the 6th book, The Winds of Winter, won't arrive until after the latest new episodes debut. Many are wondering if the HBO series will end before George R.R. Martin brings his tale to its rousing conclusion. While we don't even know when the master behind this mystical realm will unleash his latest tome, the author hints that he won't be done with his story until at least 2020. And the way he's going now, that seems like a very earnest number.

Yes, according to George R.R. Martin, the Game of Thrones TV show will have to run 10 Seasons to finish with the Ice and Fire books. The author likes to take his sweet time bringing each new tome to retailers. And there was a huge five-year gap between the third and fourth books. There was an even larger six-year gap between book four and the last book to land in fans' hands. Game of Thrones debuted on HBO the same year book five was released. And that brought the books even more attention. Now, five seasons of the show have passed, we're coming up on Game of Thrones Season 6, and there is no new book to speak of yet.

The Ice and Fire series will end with book 7. If book 6 arrives in 2016, that gives George R.R. Martin roughly four years to get the final book completed if he intends to truly have it ready by 2020. Many are worried that the writer will pass away before he even finishes his tale. The man was asked if this climax of a novel would arrive before the Game of Thrones series finale. And he gives his answer on A Dream of Spring on his personal Livejournal. Let's just say it's not exactly encouraging. He simply states the following.

"If the show runs ten seasons, maybe."

More recently, George R.R. Martin made it clear that his books contain an upcoming twist that the HBO series can't touch, as it involves characters the show has already killed off. The plots of the book and TV drama are going to differ vastly. And perhaps even more so now that the show runners don't have any preexisting text to rely upon. Though, the author is giving his input when needed to make sure there is some continuity between the two. There's also the fact that Game of Thrones, as a visual medium, will be delivering certain spoilers that some book fans don't want to know before they read these final two installments.

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The big problem with this scenario is that HBO has stated in the past that Game of Thrones will likely end with Season 8 in 2018. That hasn't been confirmed by the pay cable network. But there has been talk that a movie could wrap things up. Will fans wait patiently for the end to come on the big screen in 2020? The president of HBO doesn't think so. He wants HBO subscribers to get the finale on the small screen, because that's what they're paying for, and feels that a movie would be a big cheat. The most likely scenario is that this small screen trip to Westeros will end before the books get a chance to tell the real end of this tale. What do you think? Disappointing? Game of Thrones Season 6 debuts all-new episodes starting April 24, only on HBO.

B. Alan Orange at Movieweb
B. Alan Orange