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Naomi Watts to star in Game of Thrones spin-off

Naomi Watts in Eastern Promises

Story by Jack Foley

TWO-time Oscar nominee Naomi Watts is the first name confirmed to star in the as-yet untitled Game of Thrones spin-off for HBO.

Co-created by Jane Goldman and author George R.R. Martin, the drama will be set thousands of years before the events of the main series.

The story will reportedly follow the world’s descent from the golden Age of Heroes into its darkest hour.

A logline from HBO teased the plot without divulging any specifics: “Only one thing is for sure: From the horrifying secrets of Westeros’ history to the true origin of The White Walkers, the mysteries of the East to the Starks of legend — it’s not the story we think we know.”

Watts will play a charismatic socialite hiding a dark secret – although her character’s name is not being revealed.

Watts has earned two lead actress Oscar nominations (for 21 Grams and The Impossible) and is also widely known for her roles in Mulholland Drive, King Kong and Birdman.

This won’t be her first foray into TV either, with her credits include Showtime’s Twin Peaks revival and Netflix’s Gypsy, the latter of which she also executive produced.

The actress most recently starred in Ophelia and will next appear in Once Upon a Time in Staten Island, The Wolf Hour, Boss Level and Luce.

The pilot is based on a story from Goldman and Martin, with the teleplay credited to Goldman. Goldman, whose previous works include the Kingsman films and Kick-Ass, will also serve as showrunner.

Current Game of Thrones producer Vince Gerardis will also serve as one of the spin-off’s executive producers.

The Goldman-Martin prequel is the first of several potential Game of Thrones spin-offs that will be set in the world of Westeros – but others have yet to move to script stage.

In May 2017, a number of writers were set to work on what Martin himself has described as ‘successor shows’. These writers included Goldman, Max Borenstein (Kong: Skull Island), Brian Helgeland (Legend), Carly Wray (Westworld) and Game of Thrones veteran Bryan Cogman.

Game of Thrones creators and showrunners David Benioff and Dan Weiss are not involved in the successor show effort, focusing instead on the forthcoming final season of Game of Thrones, which is due to hit screens in the early half of 2019.