Sapochnik, who is British-Argentine, called “working within the [Game of] Thrones universe” an “honor and a privilege” and wished co-creator Ryan Condal success moving forward without him. Sapochnik will remain an executive producer of the series.
“I am so proud of what we accomplished with season one and overjoyed by the enthusiastic reaction of our viewers,” Sapochnik said in a statement. “It was incredibly tough to decide to move on, but I know that it is the right choice for me, personally and professionally.”
Stepping down from House of the Dragon, however, doesn’t mean Sapochnik’s relationship is over with HBO. In fact, he has signed a first-look deal with the network to develop new projects.
In a statement, HBO representatives said Sapochnik had “done amazing work” on the first season of House of the Dragon and credited him for “establishing its signature look and feel.”
“This series simply could not have come together the way it did without him,” the network said. “While we would have loved to have Miguel continue in the same role, we are thrilled to have his ongoing collaboration in this new creative capacity.”
Fans of House of Dragon will get to see more of Sapochnik’s work this season. Along with directing the first episode, he also directed episodes six and seven, which will debut on September 25 and October 2.
Outside of the Game of Thrones franchise, Miguel Sapochnik has directed episodes of House, Masters of Sex, and True Detective, and the films Repo Men and Finch, the latter being a post-apocalyptic sci-fi drama starring two-time Oscar winner Tom Hanks (Forrest Gump) and a robot.