It may seem like Hollywood has been making great strides when it comes to protecting women from on-the-job sexual exploitation, but to hear Emilia Clarke talk about it, there’s still a long, long way to go.
The actress, who played Daenerys Targaryen on HBO’s iconicÂ Game of Thrones, recently opened up about her experiences filming the show’s infamous nude scenes.
Speaking with actor Dax Shepherd on his podcast “Armchair Expert,” Clarke spoke about how the sex scenes have impacted her careerâ€”specifically, how often she’s been pressured to deliver nudity on set.
As she relayed to Shepherd:
â€œIâ€™ve had fights on set before where Iâ€™m like, â€˜No, the sheet stays upâ€™, and theyâ€™re like, â€˜You donâ€™t wanna disappoint your “Game of Thrones” fansâ€™. And Iâ€™m like, â€˜Fu*k you’.”
Clarke also talked about being so excited about the gig onÂ Game of Thrones that she accepted the role without having known that nudity was required.
“…obviously I took the job. And then they sent me the pilot, they sent me the scripts, and I was reading them and it was like, ‘Oh, there’s the catch! Ooh okay, alright then’.”
The experience was particularly jarring because Clarke was fresh out of drama school and a relative newcomer to the film and television world.
“I’d been on a film set twice before then and now I’m on a film set completely naked with all these people.”
Clarke went on to say that it took quite a bit of work to become more comfortable with the nudity required for her job, and that it was costar Jason Momoa who was pivotal in teaching her to advocate for herself.
“It 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 is not okay’ and I was like, ‘Oh’.”
On Twitter, fans of Clarke andÂ Game of ThronesÂ were definitely shocked to hear her stories.
Real game of thrones fans love her just the same without nude scenes— SHE RA SEASON 4 SPOILERS (@PrincessSaphic) November 20, 2019
This is disgusting I want names WHO said these things to her
emilia clarke sweetie iâ€™m so sorry you deserve so much better— ð’…ð’–ð’‚ misses seb (@msmarvcl) November 20, 2019
They better leave my Queen alone pic.twitter.com/wW5b6rnrCO— Christopher Green III â‡ï¸ (@BoLIDE_CG) November 20, 2019
We need more male nudity in films. It is tacky that so few male actors go all the way in their films.— OrvilleLloydDouglas (@OrvilleLloyd) November 20, 2019
Emilia's great and anyone who's mistreated her deserves to have their balls stapled together https://t.co/A6MUEE4RKF— Wesley (@BoxerlessBossk) November 19, 2019
Clarke also spoke of Momoa standing up for her on set, shouting to the crew between takes, “Could we get her a fuc*ing robe? Could we get her a goddamn robe? Sheâ€™s shivering!”
And she credited Momoa with helping her develop the confidence to perform her later nude scenes on her own terms.
Of her final Game of Thrones nude scene, she told Shepherd:
â€œI was like â€˜Iâ€™m owning this, this is mine, theyâ€™ve asked me to do it, and you know what, Iâ€™m fuc*ing game’.â€
And folks online were definitely here for Momoa’s advocacy for his fellow actor.
In which Jason Momoa manages to become even *more* attractive.— Jay Howard (@jayphoward) November 20, 2019
Good on him. She was lucky she had him as a co-star in that first season. The rest of the execs however needed to do better. Doesnâ€™t matter that times have changed now, and what was acceptable then is not acceptable now. People should still treat women as human beings!! https://t.co/2owN7dqhm3— Peach Mango (@thePeachMango) November 19, 2019
From what Emilia Clarke says here, sounds like someone was taking advantage of her inexperience.— Batman (@Batmancanseeyou) November 19, 2019
Jason Momoa is still an awesome dude. pic.twitter.com/xL8VXMqJ0P
I'd like to know who it was that was pressuring Emilia to do nude scenes she hadn't agreed to in advance and wasn't comfortable with.— Lucifer means Lightbringer (@thedragonLML) November 19, 2019
Props to Jason Momoa for encouraging her, an inexperienced young actress, to stand up for herself.
Hollywood is grosshttps://t.co/tJxShy85Ti
Clarke’s latest work, the holiday-themed romcomÂ Last Christmas, directed byÂ BridesmaidsÂ helmer Paul Feig, is in theaters nowâ€”and nudity free, thank you very much.