In what is a relatively common practice, HBO did not reveal the episode order in the Season 2 renewal announcement last summer. I hear the initial plan was for another 10-episode arc, which eventually changed, leading to some script rewrites. Given the leadership change at HBO’s parent company, some pointed at Warner Bros. Discovery leadership’s focus on cost-cutting. An HBO spokesperson, who confirmed to Deadline that Season 2 will contain 8 episodes, stressed that the episode count trim was story-driven.
It has been reported that House of the Dragon’s creative team had envisioned the series running for three or four seasons. I hear executive producer-showrunner Ryan Condal, working with author/executive producer George R.R. Martin, took a step back as Season 2 was being put together to take a big-picture view of the series, which follows Martin’s Fire & Blood, and figure out the overall narrative flow, including how to break up the stories season-to-season and what battles to include and when.
As part of that, I hear Season 3 has been mapped out and might be greenlighted, with HBO seriously considering committing to moving ahead with scripts, casting and a production plan as the network too is trying to think long-term instead of season-to-season.
With a portion of the plot originally intended for Season 2, including a major battle, moving to Season 3, I hear it is now more likely that the series would run for four seasons, but that has not been determined as Condal and Martin continue to go back-and-forth on the number of seasons (three or four) that would be optimal to tell the full story, sources said.