VARIETY – The last time we saw Daenerys Targaryen at the end of Season 5 of “Game of Thrones,” things didn’t look good for the Queen of Meereen: she was being overtaken by a horde of Dothraki. Now, on the cusp of the April 24 premiere of the HBO masterpiece’s sixth season, Emilia Clarke offers a few cryptic hints about what’s in store.
What’s in store for Daenerys this season?
Oh, a lot’s happened this next season! Every season’s really difficult as to the anticipation of what’s going to come out. I say this every season, but I mean it more than ever this time, this is the biggest thing. I’m going to be surprised if people’s televisions don’t explode, like actually explode or computers have to be pushed aside. It’s huge, it’s ridiculously huge. I remember reading the scripts and being like, “So, everything we’ve ever managed to do in one entire season, we’re like doubling and putting into Season 6?” It’s astonishing. It’s really, truly astonishing how much work has been done out of one season. It’s the biggest, baddest season so far, for sure.
How did it feel going into this season where there are no more books to follow? Did it feel different for you as an actor?
I think everyone was like, “What’s going to happen?” We’ve all known and now we don’t know what’s going to go on. From day one [showrunners Dan Weiss and David Benioff] make everyone feel confident. They keep things from us in a good way. I can be like, “Guys, let’s go for a drink.” Three drinks in, I’ll be like, “So, does Daenerys die or does she win?” They don’t want to tell me. They’ll joke about it but they won’t ever tell you. There’s a beautiful thing about them really kind of making sure that the actor’s getting what they need and not knowing too much.
Coming into this season, there was even more of that. It’s kind of exciting. The whole cast gets sent the scripts ahead of filming, so let’s say we start filming in June. At the end of May, we’ll all get the script. We’re all texting each other saying, “Oh my God.” There’s a big moment when you get your script. This season was epic with that one. Everyone was much more like, “What is going to happen?” It just means that there’s even more fairy dust in the air.
I think they’ve done pretty well so far with the books, so I’m confident that the people, the fans aren’t going to be disappointed, that much is certain.
What’s your relationship with them on set?
They are one of the few continuous presences on set. They are literally there every day. Every day that they can be there, they are there for someone, for one character or another. They are on set making sure that you’re okay, making sure that everything is cool, cracking jokes, keeping the environment relaxed and fun… because they keep killing everyone. In the current script you’re reading, you make friends and they die. Then you make friends, and they die.
Dan and Dave are my closest mates on set. I totally consider them my friends. They are always trying to set me up with someone. It’s the funniest thing. I’m always like, “Can we talk about the characters?” And they’re like, “We’ve got this new guy for you. We think he’d be really good for you.” It’s just magic, working with them. They’re so full of life and funny. You see it in the writing. You have to be incredibly intelligent to be that funny.
I think there’s just that secret rule at “Game of Thrones” that’s the No Asshole Rule. I don’t know how they’ve done it, but there aren’t any assholes who work on our show. There just aren’t any in any department, in any cast. You have to be this nice, cool, funny, intelligent person to work on the show. I think they set the precedent because it happens from the top down. They set the tone for everyone, even if you wanted to be an asshole. You just couldn’t. It wouldn’t be allowed.
ETONLINE – Emilia Clarke is appealing for more male nudity on Game of Thrones.
ET’s Leanne Aguilera caught up with the 29-year-old actress on Sunday (April 10) at the season 6 premiere of the HBO hit in Hollywood, California, where she responded to some fans’ complaint that male and female nudity isn’t as balanced on the fantasy series as it should be.
Fear not Game of Thrones fans — Clarke hears you, and is looking to change it.
“Damn straight,” she acknowledged when asked if she hopes the outcry is going to spark a change for future seasons. “Khal Drogo (Jason Momoa) hasn’t been around for a while, so yes.”
Clarke recently joked about seeing her on-screen husband’s “fabulous” private parts in the May issue of Glamour magazine. “I saw his member,” she hilariously quipped. “But it was covered in a fluffy pink sock. Showing it would make people feel bad. It’s too fabulous.”
GLAMOUR: What kind of kid were you?
EMILIA CLARKE: I was the drama kid. I wanted to be in the popular crowd, desperately, and I never was. I was hanging on to their coattails like, “Be my friend!”
GLAMOUR: Your mother is a vice president at a management consultancy. What did you learn from her?
EC: My dad worked away a lot, on tour, so my mom would pick my brother and me up from school. She’d be on a conference call on loudspeaker while hanging out with us, so I’d be listening and saying things like, “I don’t think John knows what he’s talking about.” I absorbed a business mentality. In terms of feminist issues, my mom never told me, like, “It’s gonna be tough. You’ve got boobs.” But I saw that there was no difference between my mom and my dad in terms of what they were capable of because of their genders.
GLAMOUR: You went to acting school. Can great acting be taught?
EC: They taught me to invest myself, feel vulnerable, commit to a character. But it was an uphill struggle. I never got cast as Juliet. There were some rarefied beauties my year; they were blond, knew Shakespeare, had all the right things. With me, they’d be like, “Can you play the Jewish grandmother?” “Uh-huh! Sure!”
GLAMOUR: You’ve joked that after you told your dad you wanted to become an actress, he said the only line you’d ever need to learn would be “Do you want fries with that?”
EC: He gets so upset with me [for joking about that]: “Milly, stop saying that I’ve said these terrible things.”
GLAMOUR: But there is an element of genuine worry in that: Jesus, that’s a tough job.
EC: If I had kids and they asked, Do you want [me] to be an actor? I would say, If there’s anything else that you can imagine doing, do that—’cause there’s so much heartache and failure and sh-ttiness that doesn’t get on the front of the magazine.
GLAMOUR: Before you landed Game of Thrones, you worked as a telemarketer to make your rent. Were you good at it?
EC: I was upselling for charities: “Thank you for giving five pounds a month; have you considered giving six-pounds-fifty?” Soul-destroying. People responded by saying things like, “You evil person. I’ve just lost someone close to me.” I did four shifts and walked out.
GLAMOUR US – Over the past five seasons of Game of Thrones, we’ve come to know Emilia Clarke by her ferocious ambition, her flame-breathing dragon babies, and her many colorful names: Daenerys Targaryen, Khaleesi of the Dothraki, Mother of Dragons. A portrait of unstoppable womanly power, Khaleesi can pivot from deep maternal sweetness to enemy-obliterating fieriness in seconds. “I love that so many women watch the show,” Clarke tells Glamour in her May cover interview. “If you look at Game of Thrones on face value—blood, tits, dragons, swearwords—you’re like, Oh, this must be for guys. But if you take that away, the story lines are fascinating depictions of the struggle for power. And women are in on that conversation!”
So what’s it like to encounter those many female—and male—fans? “This gorgeous girl once said to me, ‘Watching Khaleesi makes me feel like I can be a strong woman,” Clarke shares. “I remember being like, ‘That’s proper.’ That is a wonderful thing. Then there are times with certain dudes where I’m like, ‘You’ve seen my tits. OK, sure, you can have a selfie.’ Awkward!”
We all know that Game of Thrones certainly is not shy of showing nudity. But we had to ask: In a show that’s filled with women’s breasts, butts, even the occasional vagina, why did we never see Khaleesi’s husband Khal Drogo’s dong?
“Oh, I did,” Clarke shared. “I saw his member, but it was covered in a pink fluffy sock. Showing it would make people feel bad. It’s too fabulous. No, I don’t know why. But I’d like to bring your memory back to Mr. Michiel Huisman [Khaleesi’s love interest in seasons four and five] and I copulating for the first time, which began with me saying, ‘Take off your clothes,’ and then you got to see his perfect bottom.”
But what about another criticism that’s been pointed at the show. Khaleesi was raped in season one by her husband, but a lot of people came away from that arc with the unsettling impression that almost immediately after the rape she falls in love with and dedicates herself to her rapist.
“Well, Daenerys and Khal Drogo’s arranged marriage, and the customary rape that followed—ask George R.R. Martin why he did that, ’cause that’s on him,” Clarke answered. “But I thought the consensual sex she has thereafter was genius. She is physically saying, ‘You can’t rape me again. I’m going to be in control and show you something you’ve never seen before.’ At the heart of it, we’re telling a story; you need that part of the story to feel empathy for Daenerys. You see her attacked by her brother, raped by her husband, and then going, ‘F–k all of you, I’m gonna rule the world.’ That’s where we are now.” (source)
ESQUIRE – Years ago, when I was a grad student, I worked at an ice cream shop in Oxford called George & Davis’. Students from Teddies, one of the local private schools just up the road, used to come in all the time. One of them was Emilia Clarke.
She’s twenty-eight now, one of the stars of Game of Thrones, the mother not just of dragons but of John Connor in the latest Terminator movie, and Esquire’s Sexiest Woman Alive. It’s Sunday lunchtime. I was supposed to be taking my kids to Legoland. But I’m not—I’m going to interview Emilia.
My taxi pulls up at a house in Hampstead, an inner London suburb. Academics and writers used to live there. Now only bankers and lawyers and movie stars can afford it—you hear a lot of American accents on the street. Emilia’s house is part of a beautiful Georgian “terrace” (English for a section of row houses) with long front lawns, pretty pastel-colored stucco walls, big windows you can step out of. It’s just across the road from Hampstead Heath: eight hundred acres of hills, hedgerows, and countryside in the middle of London.
The weather is classic English summer’s day. It rained the night before, it will rain later that evening, but at lunchtime there’s a kind of chilly truce and the overcast sky has a certain brightness to it. Emilia comes out of the house to meet me—the buzzer isn’t working, and she shouts instructions apologetically from the doorstep as I fumble with the garden gate. She’s wearing dark jeans and low cowboy boots and a cloud-soft and cloud-colored cashmere top.
“I’m sorry if I’m shouting,” she tells me. “I was at a Metallica concert last night.”
Be sure to check in the gallery, the beautiful outtakes from the Esquire related photoshoot! Emilia looks SPLENDID! She’s just so so gorgeous! Scans from the issue will be added as soon as I get my hands on it. Enjoy these for now:
Emilia spoke with the Los Angeles Time about her Emmy’s nomination:
I was, hilariously, I was at the doctor’s waiting to go in [when I found out I was nominated]. It was a very embarrassing moment. There’s a lovely British girl waiting in the doctor’s office, and you’ve got the best news ever, and you’re very excited and a bit loud on the phone. All you want to do is just scream and shout, and you have all these people glaring at you thinking, ‘What is that woman on?’ So, yeah, I had to try and contain my excitement for that moment. But it was pretty brilliant nonetheless.