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'Game of Thrones' creators new 'Confederate' is controversial

Social-media reaction to the planned alternate-history show in which slavery lives on is not exactly "Thrones"-level enthusiastic.

DB Weiss, David Benioff

David Benoiff and D.B. Weiss won't begin work on "Confederate" until "Game of Thrones" is finished.

Art Streiber / HBO

"Game of Thrones" showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss are moving from one HBO fantasy world to another.

When "Thrones" ends, the two will write and executive-produce "Confederate," a series about an alternate-history timeline where the American South's secession was successful.

"As the brilliant 'Game of Thrones' winds down to its final season, we are thrilled to be able to continue our relationship with Dan and David, knowing that any subject they take on will result in a unique and ambitious series," said HBO programming president Casey Bloys on Wednesday. "Their intelligent, wry and visually stunning approach to storytelling has a way of engaging an audience and taking them on an unforgettable journey."

In the show, slavery remains legal in the Confederate States of America.

 "The story follows a broad swath of characters on both sides of the Mason-Dixon Demilitarized Zone  —  freedom fighters, slave hunters, politicians, abolitionists, journalists, the executives of a slave-holding conglomerate and the families of people in their thrall," HBO said in a press release.

"We have discussed 'Confederate' for years, originally as a concept for a feature film," Benioff and Weiss said in the release. "But our experience on 'Thrones' has convinced us that no one provides a bigger, better storytelling canvas than HBO. There won't be dragons or White Walkers in this series, but we are creating a world, and we couldn't imagine better partners in world-building than (producers) Nichelle and Malcolm (Spellman), who have impressed us for a long time with their wit, their imagination and their Scrabble-playing skills."

Reaction on social media was wary.

Amazon's "Man in the High Castle," based on the novel by Philip K. Dick, also has an alternative-history premise, where World War II was won by the Axis Powers and Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan rule the United States. That similarity didn't go unnoticed.

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