War looms large in first, full Game of Thrones season 8 trailer

The night is dark and full of terrors, but HBO’s first trailer for Game of Thrones certainly makes the encroaching darkness entertaining.

Following a series of Game of Thrones promotional videos and images released in recent weeks, HBO dropped the first, full-length trailer for the show’s eighth and final season just over a month before the season premiere. The trailer offers approximately two minutes of footage from the upcoming season, and it packs a lot into that running time.

Along with giving fans a glimpse of what many of the show’s key characters will be up to during the season — including the whereabouts of a certain pair of dragons — the trailer also offers a few hints as to the unexpected allegiances forced upon various characters by the forces aligned against them. The trailer concludes with a shot of the assembled armies gathered to await the arrival of The Night King and his undead legions.

At the end of season 7, Daenerys Targaryen (Emilia Clarke), her dragons, and her massive army were en route to Westeros, and Cersei Lannister (Lena Headey) had assumed the Iron Throne after the death of her children. Meanwhile, The Night King’s army crept south, carving its way through nearly everything that opposed their deadly march.

The final season of Game of Thrones brings back the surviving characters from prior seasons in a final battle against The Night King, with the fate of Westeros — and likely, the world — hanging in the balance.

Game of Thrones creators and executive producers David Benioff and D.B. Weiss resume their roles behind the camera for season 8, with Carolyn Strauss, Frank Doelger, and Bernadette Caulfield also serving as executive producers.

The final, climactic battle of the series is reported to be one of the largest battle scenes ever filmed for television — and right up there among the biggest big-screen battles, too — and took nearly 11 weeks to film. Filmmaker Miguel Sapochnik, who directed the popular Battle of the Bastards episode of Game of Thrones, directed the series’ final battle, which will reportedly be fought in and around Winterfell, the place where the entire saga began. The battle is also expected to assemble the largest group of key characters in one scene that the show has offered since its earliest episodes.

Game of Thrones season 8 will premiere April 14 on HBO.

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