Emilia Clarke credits her "Game of Thrones" co-star Jason Momoa for helping her navigate the discomfort of on-screen nudity and potentially-gratuitous sex scenes.
Clarke was 23 when she first began working on the HBO series, "and I have no idea what I'm doing ... I'd been on a film set twice before then, and now I'm on a film set completely naked with all of these people," she said on Armchair Expert, recalling season 1 of the series. Her character's first sex scene is more like a rape; subsequent episodes showcase less unsettling, but still quite graphic, sex scenes with Khal Drogo, played by Jason Momoa.
While working on the more disturbing scenes, "he was crying more than I was!" Clarke said of Momoa. "He took care of me in an environment, I didn't know I need to be taken care of ... He was so kind and considerate and cared about me as a human being."
Clarke says Momoa set the standard for acceptable on-set behavior, advocating for her before she felt capable of standing up for herself. Between takes or after scenes would wrap, she remembers him repeatedly calling over to the crew, "Could we get her a f--king robe? Could we get her a goddamn robe? She's shivering!"
That first season "was definitely hard. Which is why the scenes, when I got to do them with Jason, were wonderful, because he was like, 'No, sweetie, this isn't okay.'"
Now a decade older, Clarke says she's learned how to push back against filmmakers who insist on nude scenes that go beyond what makes sense for a role. Some have attempted to sway her by saying, "'You don't want to disappoint your 'Game of Thrones' fans.' And I'm like, 'f--k you,'" Clarke said.
Momoa's role on the HBO series didn't extend beyond season 1 (save for a few references in season 2), and "Aquaman" has made him a bonafide movie star.
In fact, both Momoa and Clarke have mostly focused on films since finishing up their time on "Game of Thrones." Clarke stars in "Last Christmas," in theaters now, and Momoa will star alongside Timothee Chalamet, Zendaya, Oscar Isaac and more famous faces in the upcoming sci-fi epic "Dune."
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