As long as a Targaryen sits on the Iron Throne — and is played by an Equity UK actor — HBO will have some “Game of Thrones”-related programming on its schedule. Or so it would appear.

Indeed, the network has continued shooting Season 2 of its hit series “The House of the Dragon” amid the labor strikes by two of Hollywood’s unions. Why? Because the scripts for the “Game of Thrones” prequel were completed before the Writers Guild of America began its strike on May 2. And the actors on the TV series are part of a British actors union, not the on-strike actors’ union SAG-AFTRA.

The clarifications came by way of “A Song of Ice and Fire” author George R.R. Martin, who shared the updates about the TV adaptation in a recent entry on his “Not a Blog” blog. He also got candid about his outlook on the “long and bitter” labor strikes currently disrupting the film and TV industries.

“One of the few shows [s]till shooting is HOUSE OF THE DRAGON, as you may have read. That’s true,” he wrote Saturday. “I am told the second season is half done. ALL of the scripts had been finished months before the WGA strike began. No writing has been done since, to the best of my knowledge.”

The sprawling series is also mostly shot in London, with some sets in Wales, Spain and other locales, he said, which is part of the reason filming has continued.

“The actors are members of the British union, Equity, not SAG-AFTRA, and though Equity strongly supports their American cousins (they have a big rally planned to show that support), British law forbids them from staging a sympathy strike. If they walk, they have no protection against being fired for breach of contract, or even sued,” Martin wrote, adding that he was shocked to hear that.

“One of the two major UK political parties, Labour, has its roots in the trade union movement,” he wrote. “How in the world could they have allowed such anti-labor regulations to be enacted? Seems to me that Labour Party really needs to do a better job of protecting the right to strike.”

The Emmy winner also said that his “overall deal” with HBO was suspended June 1, but that he still has “plenty to do.”

“These strikes are not really about name writers or producers or showrunners, most of whom are fine; we’re striking for the entry-level writers, the story editors, the students hoping to break in, the actor who has four lines, the guy working his first staff job who dreams of creating his own show one day, as I did back in the 80s.”

HBO previously announced that production on Season 2 had kicked off at the U.K.’s Leavesden Studios in April with members of the “original family as well as new talents on both sides of the camera.”

The new season is set to premiere sometime next year. The production hasn’t been interrupted by either strike because scripts were done long before the writers’ walkout started, a person familiar with the production but not authorized to speak about it told The Times. And, as Variety reported earlier this month, production on “House of the Dragon” was not affected by the SAG-AFTRA strike because it is an Equity UK contract production.

The British labor union has declared its “unwavering solidarity” with SAG-AFTRA and its members, stating earlier this month that it would support them “by all lawful means.” However, due to existing laws in the U.K., the union directed SAG-AFTRA members currently working under an Equity UK collective bargaining agreement to continue to report to work as usual.

Representatives for HBO’s parent company, Warner Bros. Discovery, declined to comment when reached Monday by The Times.

Meanwhile, SAG-AFTRA has been granting waivers, or exemptions, to a select group of independent films and TV shows that are not affiliated with the major studios and streaming giants. The waivers, granted to projects unaffiliated with members of the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers, give SAG-AFTRA members the ability to work without violating the strike or crossing picket lines. The exempted projects must follow guidelines that the guild has proposed in bargaining with the studios, and the deal is good until the union and AMPTP — which includes Netflix, Warner Bros. Discovery, NBC/Universal, Paramount and Amazon — agree on and ratify a new contract.

Martin, who joined the WGA in 1986 and has been through several strikes with the union, said that the studios are not even talking with the WGA and that negotiations have been shut down since May when the writers’ strike started. Deadline reported last week that the studio would hold out until October before coming back to the bargaining table with the WGA.

“[T]his year’s strike is the most important of my lifetime. An unnamed producer was quoted last week saying the AMPTP strategy was to stand fast until the writers started losing their homes and apartments, which gives you a hint of what we’re facing,” he wrote. “But we ARE facing it. I have never seen such unity in the Guilds; the strike authorization votes for both SAG and WGA were as close to unanimous as we are ever likely to see.

“No one can be certain where we go from here, but I have a bad feeling that this strike will be long and bitter. It may get as bad as the infamous 1985 strike, though I hope not,” he said.

The 74-year-old also shared an update about his progress on the long-delayed “The Winds of Winter,” the seventh novel in his protracted “Ice and Fire” book series, assuring fans that he has made “steady progress.”

“Not as fast as I would like, certainly not as fast as you would like… but progress nonetheless,” Martin wrote. “It keeps me out of trouble.”

He also said that the second season of his AMC crime drama “Dark Winds” also wrapped before either strike began and will drop on July 30. However, actors and writers will not be participating in any promotion, and the New York and L.A. premieres have both been canceled, he added.

Times staff writer Jonah Valdez contributed to this report.

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