Game of Thrones star Nathalie Emmanuel has revealed that her cast mate Emilia Clarke “had my back” when she experienced a sexist incident on set.
Emmanuel, who played Missandei on the zeitgeist-grabbing HBO show, said that she and Clarke, who portrayed Daenerys Targaryen, “always looked out for each other.”
“For example, in my first season, my costume was pretty revealing, and there was an incident with a supporting actor who made a comment about it on set – I mean, typical – and Emilia straight away had my back,” Emmanuel told Vogue. “It got handled.”
Emmanuel also revealed that she and Clarke bonded as soon as she joined the cast in season three. “Emilia and I got on like a house on fire from the beginning,” she said. “When I joined the cast, she had already been shooting Game of Thrones for a few years, and she was definitely ready to have some female energy around her.”
Emmanuel went on to speak candidly about the violent death which befell Missandei during the show’s final season. Her demise proved unpopular among fans, especially as Emmanuel was one of very few actors of color working on the show.
“It definitely caused me to reflect a lot more – about race and diversity more generally,” she said. “At the end of the day, if there’s ever a show on the level of Game of Thrones again, representation has to be part of the conversation from the beginning. That way, there’s no single person who has to represent every other person of color. It’s a conversation I used to have a lot with Jacob [Anderson], who played Grey Worm, the only other major non-white character in the series. We were always really conscious of how much our being part of Game of Thrones mattered to people.”
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