Emilia Clarke On Filming GAME OF THRONES While Dealing With Chronic Condition: "I Thought I Was Going To Die"

Emilia Clarke On Filming GAME OF THRONES While Dealing With Chronic Condition: "I Thought I Was Going To Die"

Emilia Clarke has opened up about her scary on-set experience while filming the early seasons of HBO's Game of Thrones after suffering a debilitating brain injury...

By MarkCassidy - Jun 12, 2024 06:06 AM EST
Filed Under: Game of Thrones

Game of Thrones alum Emilia Clarke has previously spoken about the life-altering medical emergencies she experienced during her time playing Daenerys Targaryen on the hit HBO series, but the Secret Invasion star has now elaborated on what a truly harrowing experience she had while shooting the early seasons.

Clarke suffered two brain aneurysms in 2011 and 2013, and was worried that her injuries would impact her ability to work on the show.

“When you have a brain injury, because it alters your sense of self on such a dramatic level, all of the insecurities you have going into the workplace quadruple overnight,” Clarke said in an interview with Big Issue. “The first fear we all had was: ‘Oh my God, am I going to get fired? Am I going to get fired because they think I’m not capable of completing the job?'”

Clarke wasn't fired (obviously), but there was a constant fear that she could suffer from another aneurysm while filming due to the stress and intense work. “Well, if I’m going to die, I better die on live TV,” she added.

“Having a chronic condition that diminishes your confidence in this one thing you feel is your reason to live is so debilitating and so lonely," she went on. "One of the biggest things I felt with a brain injury was profoundly alone. That is what we’re trying to overcome. It has given me a superpower.”

The final season of Game of Thrones proved to be highly divisive for a number of reasons, but the development that arguably came in for the most backlash was the fate of Clarke's character.

Pushed to breaking point by the deaths of two of her dragons and loyal friends Missandei of Naath and Jorah Mormont, Dany gave in to the madness that's long plagued her family and burned King's Landing to the ground in order to exact her revenge on Cersei Lannister.

When the Queen of Dragons sentenced Tyrion to death for freeing his brother Jamie, Jon Snow realized that she'd become a tyrant and reluctantly ended her life.

Although Dany's ultimate "heel turn" was foreshadowed in the earlier seasons to some extent, many fans refused to accept her demise, and it sounds like Clarke wasn't too happy about her character's death, either.

"I still think Daenerys did nothing wrong. It's not fair that Jon gets to live," she joked when asked about her character's demise during a 2022 interview. “I want Daenerys with him. With Jon. They could go to family therapy and fix their issues. Daenerys is a very hopeful character, she has a lot of hopes, and I wished that she was able to achieve that."

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