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May 13, 2019

Did the biggest Game of Thrones related twist of the year just happen outside of the show itself?

It might have if a wild claim from one of the show's former stars is true. Actor Ian McElhinney, who played Barristan Selmy, claimed at a recent convention that author George R.R. Martin has actually completed the next two books in the series already.

"George has already written books 6 and 7, and as far as he’s concerned there only are seven books," McElhinney said, Collider reports. "But he struck an agreement with David [Benioff] and Dan [Weiss], the showrunners on the series, that he would not publish the final two books until the series has completed."

He goes on to insist that in "another month or two," we might get the final two books in the series.

This is a jaw-dropping statement for a number of reasons, the most obvious being the idea that Martin is finally done with the long-awaited The Winds of Winter, which book fans have been eagerly anticipating for almost eight years now. But while it's not hard to believe Martin could soon be finished with this sixth book, the idea that he's also fully done with the seventh book already is something few fans have thought possible.

There have also never been any reports of Martin agreeing to hold off on publishing his books until the series is over, a deal that sure doesn't sound like something he'd agree to. For that reason, it's definitely possible McElhinney has his facts wrong and that he just got book fans' hopes way up, preparing them for the kind of inevitable disappointment they have experienced on a consistent basis for nearly an entire decade.

Update: Martin has now shot down McElhinney's claim on his blog, saying the idea "makes not a whit of sense." Brendan Morrow

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