Emilia Clarke is making waves away from the GoT set
A TV show featuring the story of Daenerys Targaryen, a young queen coming into her power, propelled Emilia Clarke to global success. Here the British actress known for her easy and fun-loving personality in real life reveals how playing this strong charac
Emilia Clarke as Daenerys Targaryen has enraptured fans around the world with her delicate beauty, powerful aura and capacity for mass destruction as “mother of dragons”, in the show Game of Thrones.
Emilia is now on set filming Season Eight as seen on her Instagram account in recent weeks. The HBO series is rumoured to only be released worldwide in 2019. Though plot specifics are being closely guarded, Emilia is willing to wager that fans will be satisfied with the level of blood, lust, and treachery.
In the meantime, the 31-year-old Emilia has been expanding her repertoire with major roles in Terminator: Genisys and tear-jerker Me Before You. This month, she stars in the new Star Wars prequel film alongside Alden Ehrenreich who plays the young Han Solo.
In the past you’ve mentioned that your time on Game of Thrones has paralleled a deep personal evolution. Can you elaborate?
Success forces you to change. After playing Daenerys for the first couple of seasons and making a name for myself in show business, I was still plagued by self-doubt and anxiety. Coming to terms with yourself and knowing what you want – that’s not easy for anyone, and especially not if you happen to be very
sensitive. But it was during those difficult times and low moments that I started to figure out my life and evolve into the woman I am today. And I want to keep learning and never stop working on myself so that I can be more open and engaged in whatever I do. Why do you think Daenerys has proven to be such an intense source of fascination for audiences? Daenerys is a strong and powerful woman. She’s a leader and fighter and survivor. One of the most compelling aspects to her is that she combines the strength of a man with the sensitivity of a woman. She also sets herself apart from the other main characters because her ultimate goal is pure and noble – she wants to rule over a world where all people are equal. Do you see her as a role model? She’s a great example for young women. Daenerys possesses a level of selfconfidence that is empowering to young women. Her journey throughout the series is that of a girl with low selfesteem who transforms herself into a powerful and resilient young woman. I think she’s a brilliant role model and I’ve personally gained a lot of confidence and determination simply from playing that kind of character and learning from her experience.
Is it at times staggering for you to realise that you’re part of arguably the greatest series in the history of television?
It’s scary to even think about it. I’ve been very lucky and I certainly never imagined while working at a terrible call-centre that one day I would be getting part in a massive TV series
like Game of Thrones. I would have been thrilled just with a small role and I never expected that I would become one of the major characters. This has meant so much to me and I’m immensely grateful.
Did you always have the feeling that you would be successful?
I believed that if I worked hard good things would happen. I’ve been blessed with a strong work ethic that I get from my mother especially. She started out as a secretary and now she’s the vice president of marketing for a global consulting firm. My mother worked very hard to get to where she is and I’ve always had that same kind of drive and determination. But I also know that a lot of luck is required to get a role in a play or film no matter how much talent you have. My parents were worried at first when I told them around 17 or 18 that I wanted to pursue acting as my profession because they knew that the odds are stacked against you. But once they know how determined I was, they were very supportive.
Has it become more and more difficult to walk around London unrecognised?
It’s not as easy as it used to be, but I can still move pretty freely in public, which is very important to me. I have it so much easier than Peter Dinklage, who is immediately recognised as Tyrion Lannister even if he is wearing a swimsuit and walking along the beach. Or Kit Harington as Jon Snow.
What are your goals once Game of Thrones comes to an end?
I want to continue working in theatre because that helps me improve and I love performing in front of an audience. I would also like to do a musical at some point because I enjoy singing. I’m probably going to make my fair share of good and bad choices but fate and luck are all part of the game. I’m going to simply trust my instincts and see where that takes me.