The United Kingdom’s decision to leave the European Union may be destabilizing the markets, devaluing the pound and giving many people general apocalyptic feelings, but there’s at least one thing that will probably remain unaffected by Brexit: Game of Thrones.
While some pondered in the first light of the post-Brexit vote day that the results could have an affect on the show’s production, HBO on Friday released a statement affirming production should go on undisturbed.
“We do not anticipate that the result of the EU Referendum will have any material effect on HBO producing Game of Thrones,” the network said.
One reason for this is that the show has not received money from the European Regional Development Fund money that will be affected by the vote for several seasons.
Moreover, the tax incentives it does receive from Northern Ireland Screen, for example will not be affected by the vote.
“This statement is to confirm that Northern Ireland Screens production funding comes from the Northern Ireland Executive through Invest NI and does not use monies provided from European funded programmes,” NI Screen said in a statement posted today. “We look forward to business as usual.”
It’s also worth noting that Game of Thrones, which airs its Season 6 finale on Sunday,very well could be out of production by the time the U.K. officially splits from the EU. Some timeline estimates have the process taking around two years, per Article 50 of the EU rulebook, but possibly more should they vote to extend that period.
Game of Thrones, meanwhile, is already in the process of casting Season 7, which should go into production this summer and run through the end of the year. If Season 8 follows the same timeline and is indeed the final season as rumored, the show could have its bags packed long before the official split.
The same, of course, can not be said for many other U.K. productions.After the results, which saw 52% of the voters decide to leave the EU, Michael Ryan, the chairman of the Independent Film and Television Alliance, told Variety that the results had the possibility to be “devastating” for U.K.’s film and TV industries.
The decision to exit the European Union is a major blow to the U.K. film and TV industry, he said in a statement via the publication. Producing films and television programs is a very expensive and very risky business and certainty about the rules affecting the business is a must.
Many of the UK’s most prominent film and TV stars were vocal heading into the Brexit vote, backing the effort to stay within the EU. Sir Patrick Stewart, Benedict Cumberbatch and Keira Knightley were among the about 280 figures who signed a letter drafted by Britain Stronger in Europe, calling for citizens to vote against the referendum.
“From the smallest gallery to the biggest blockbuster, many of us have worked on projects that would never have happened without vital EU funding or by collaborating across borders,” the letter read in part. “Britain is not just stronger in Europe, it is more imaginative and more creative, and our global creative success would be severely weakened by walking away.”
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