Pre-winter is coming?

HBO has ordered a pilot for a Game of Thrones prequel from writer/producer Jane Goldman (Kingsman: The Secret Service, Kick-Ass) for a story by Goldman and series author George R.R. Martin that would take place thousands of years before the events in Westeros that have enthralled audiences for seven seasons so far (and readers for much longer).

So the good news is that Jon Snow (Kit Harington) isn't dead for even a minute in this one. But he's not alive yet, either.

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HBO is describing the story as chronicling "the world's descent from the golden Age of Heroes into its darkest hour. And 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."

With the original series scheduled to wrap up in 2019, the network had actively been looking into as many as five potential spinoffs, but Goldman's is the first pilot to be announced.

HBO said Goldman will also serve as showrunner.