No surprise here, HBO has officially renewed "Game of Thrones" for a fourth season.
The Emmy and Golden Globe-winning series launched its ten-episode third season this past Sunday to record high numbers.
The average gross audience of an episode last season was 11.6 million viewers, that number is expected to rise this season.
The fourth season is expected to adapt the second half of "A Storm of Swords," the third book in George R. R. Martin's "A Song of Ice and Fire" book series on which the show is based.
Due to the elaborate production's need to prepare earlier than many other shows, it was already revealed a few weeks ago that pre-production was already well underway on the fourth season.
Meanwhile, HBO programming President Michael Lombardo has given a very mature and reasonable response this week when EW brought up the topic of all the piracy surrounding 'Thrones'.
"I probably shouldn't be saying this, but it is a compliment of sorts. The demand is there. And it certainly didn't negatively impact the DVD sales. [Piracy is] something that comes along with having a wildly successful show on a subscription network."
HBO's policy remains anti-piracy - "We obviously are a subscription service so as a general proposition so we try to stop piracy when we see it happen, particularly on a systematic basis when people are selling pirated versions." However, the casual individual-user downloading will probably be alright - "No, we haven't sent out the Game of Thrones police.”
Amusingly, a concern he has is the quality - "One of my worries is about the copies [downloaders are] seeing. The production values of this show are so incredible. So I'm hoping that in the purloined different generation of cuts that the show is holding up."
So if you have to download, make sure it's a 720p or 1080p copy.
Source: HBO & EW