We don’t know how to respond to ‘Game of Thrones’ showrunners’ next project

David Benioff and D. B. Weiss accept an Outstanding Drama Series for 'Game of Thrones' at the 2016 Emmy Awards.
Image: Buckner/Variety/REX/Shutterstock

What’s a logical followup to Game of Thrones? Loads of spinoffs, but series creators David Benioff and D.B. Weiss have more on their plate. The showrunners will write and executive produce Confederate, a series in which the slaveholding South won the Civil War and slavery still exists in the United States.

Yup, you read that right.

We have discussed CONFEDERATE for years, originally as a concept for a feature film, Benioff and Weiss said in an HBO press release. But our experience on Thrones has convinced us that no one provides a bigger, better storytelling canvas than HBO. There wont be dragons or White Walkers in this series, but we are creating a world, and we couldnt imagine better partners in world-building than [Nichelle Tramble Spellman and Malcolm Spellman], who have impressed us for a long time with their wit, their imagination and their Scrabble-playing skills.

According to the press release, Confederate “chronicles the events leading to the Third American Civil War.”

The series takes place in an alternate timeline, where the southern states have successfully seceded from the Union, giving rise to a nation in which slavery remains legal and has evolved into a modern institution. The story follows a broad swath of characters on both sides of the Mason-Dixon Demilitarized Zone freedom fighters, slave hunters, politicians, abolitionists, journalists, the executives of a slave-holding conglomerate and the families of people in their thrall.

As the brilliant Game of Thrones winds down to its final season, we are thrilled to be able to continue our relationship with Dan and David, knowing that any subject they take on will result in a unique and ambitious series, said Casey Bloys, president of HBO Programming. Their intelligent, wry and visually stunning approach to storytelling has a way of engaging an audience and taking them on an unforgettable journey.”

We know little about the show besides this release, which also names Game of Thrones producers Carolyn Strauss and Bernadette Caulfield to the creative team. Even so, the immediate response on Twitter was … not favorable.

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