In Game of Thrones, Emilia Clarke terrified and captivated audiences in the role of Daenerys Targaryen, the hero, turned anti-hero turned full-fledged villain by the time the show ended. In a recent interview with Vogue, Nathalie Emmanuel, who joined the show during later seasons as Daenerys' sidekick Missandei, revealed how Clarke brought that frightening 'Mother of Dragons' vibe to bear on set to defend Emmanuel against improper remarks by a costar regarding her costume.
"Emilia and I got on like a house on fire from the beginning. 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. She and I always looked out for each other. If you're the only girls on a male-dominated set, it bonds you in a certain way. For example, in my first season, my costume was pretty revealing, and there was an incident with an extra who made a comment about it on set - I mean, typical - and Emilia straightaway had my back. It got handled."
The strong bonding between the cast of Game of Thrones has been on display for years during press junkets for each new season of the show, and Clarke's warm and helpful nature offscreen has long been celebrated among fans. In fact, the popularity of the actress is what made it all the more difficult for fans to get behind her character's descent into full-blown supervillanery in the final two episodes of the series.
For Nathalie Emmanuel, having Clarke to stick up for her made things easier on set, but having the role of a linguistic expert came with its own set of problems.
"Once I landed the role, I got completely thrown in at the deep end - especially when it came to languages. Missandei is obviously this great linguist, and I became really committed to learning Valyrian - high Valyrian and low Valyrian, which are as different as Latin and Italian. David [J Peterson], who created the languages for the TV series, is an absolute genius. Sometimes when I was being really obsessive, [show creators] Dan [Weiss] and David [Benioff] would be like, "Nathalie, there is literally only one person on earth who knows this language and whether you're pronouncing that correctly." And I'd be like, "I know, but I'm still going to get it right."
Now that Game of Thrones is at an end, despite the many online petitions launched by fans demanding the showrunners do over the final season of the show and fix many of what they deem to be mistakes in storytelling, Emmanuel has moved on to other projects. She will next be seen opposite Kevin Hart and John Travolta in Quibi's upcoming action-comedy series Die Hart, which will premiere its first three installments on Monday, July 20, with new chapters debuting every weekday until Wednesday, July 29, for a total of ten episodes so far. Vogue was the first to deliver these quotes from Nathalie Emmanuel.