Yes, there's been much discussion about the impending end of Game of Thrones. Your favorite TV shows can't last forever, after all (unless your favorite show is Law & Order: SVU, because that baby will clearly stay alive and kickin' for years to come).
But today brings the news that although the GoT creators have discussed two more seasons, ending after season eight, that might not mean as much time in Westeros as you expect.
Showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss tell Variety in a new interview that they think the final two seasons will be much, much shorter than the ten-episode stories we're used to.
"I think we're down to our final 13 episodes after this season. We're heading into the final lap," Benioff says. "That's the guess, though nothing is yet set in stone, but that's what we're looking at."
Before you round up an army of White Walkers to storm the writers' offices, know this: the entire reason they're thinking of making the seasons much shorter is so they can spend more time (and likely money) on the existing installments.
"It's crossing out of a television schedule into more of a mid-range movie schedule," Weiss says.
Last year, the showrunners spoke of their desire to wind down the series in a satisfying way. "We could go another four years," Benioff said—before dropping the real news. "But the one thing that really got us excited when we pitched this to HBO was that this isn't just a regular series. It's a real story with a beginning, a middle, and an end.
He continued, "We know what the end is, and we're barreling towards it. So the idea that we're going to try and stretch it out by an extra couple years just because we're all having a good time doing it and people are making money off it just feels like it would be a betrayal."
Game of Thrones season six premieres on Sunday, April 24 at 9 p.m. on HBO.