The series is essentially a direct prequel to House of the Dragon itself, following the sea adventures of young Corlys Velaryon (played by Steve Toussaint as an adult), nicknamed "The Sea Snake", on his famous nine voyages of exploration to lands beyond Westeros.
His journeys will take him and his crew to the very edges of the known world, from the polar wastes of the Shivering Sea in the north, to the far east of the Jade Sea, becoming the first man from the Seven Kingdoms to directly voyage beyond Qarth to the Golden Empire of Yi Ti itself. Young Corlys will acquire so many exotic riches from his voyages to the east that by his own hand he will make himself the richest man in Westeros. This wealth will make him a key figure in royal politics, and set the stage for the rivalries and machinations faced by adult Corlys in House of the Dragon.
On March 18, 2021, Deadline first reported a new wave of prequel pitches was being considered by HBO, among which was a "young Corlys Velaryon" series. The report also said that Bruno Heller, known for his work on HBO's Rome, was attached as potential showrunner.
On March 9, 2022, George R.R. Martin himself gave an update that the project is proceeding well:
- "Bruno Heller, the creator and showrunner of ROME, is writing his pilot script for the Corlys Velaryon series. That one started out as NINE VOYAGES, but now we’re calling it THE SEA SNAKE, since we wanted to avoid having two shows with numbers in the title [the other being Ten Thousand Ships]."
This confirms that the project has advanced from the "pitch" phase to the pilot script phase, though it remains to be seen whether HBO will order a pilot to be filmed based on it. This also confirms that it was originally known as Nine Voyages but that the official working title is now The Sea Snake.
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