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Emilia Clarke Discusses Feeling Pressured to Do Nude Scenes for Game of Thrones

3 minute read

Emilia Clarke has previously spoken out about what it was like to film nude scenes as Daenerys Targaryen on Game of Thrones. She even defended the show in 2017 when it drew criticism for featuring a high volume of sex scenes.

But during a recent appearance on Dax Shepard’s “Armchair Expert” podcast, Clarke spoke about how her views on on-screen nudity have evolved, explaining that she’s felt pressured to shoot naked on post-Game of Thrones projects.

“I’m a lot savvier with what I’m comfortable with, and what I am okay with doing,” she said. “I’ve had fights on set before where I’m like, ‘No, the sheet stays up,’ and they’re like, ‘You don’t wanna disappoint your Game of Thrones fans.’ And I’m like, ‘F—k you.'”

Clarke also said that part of the reason she agreed to the “f—k ton of nudity” in season 1 of Game of Thrones was because of her lack of acting experience.

“I’m floating through this first season. I have no idea what I’m doing; I have no idea what any of this is,” she said. “I’ve never been on a film set like this before — I’d been on a film set twice before then — and I’m now on a film set completely naked with all of these people, and I don’t know what I’m meant to do, and I don’t know what’s expected of me, and I don’t know what you want, and I don’t know what I want. Regardless of there being nudity or not, I would have spent that first season thinking I’m not worthy of requiring anything; I’m not worthy of needing anything at all.”

She also credited co-star Jason Momoa, who played Daenerys’ husband Khal Drogo, for “taking care of me in an environment where I didn’t know I needed to be taken care of.”

“Jason had experience — he was an experienced actor who had done a bunch of stuff before coming on to [Game of Thrones],” Clarke said. “He was like, ‘Sweetie, this is how it’s meant to be and this is how it’s not meant to be and I’m going to make sure that that’s the f—king case.'”

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Write to Megan McCluskey at megan.mccluskey@time.com