Here’s the actress who inspired Khaleesi from ‘Game of Thrones’

Emilia Clarke is our queen. Literally—we bow down to her as both a human in real life, and Daenerys Targaryen every Sunday on Game of Thrones. It’s the role Emilia has become most known for, and she totally owns it. Though she didn’t quite fit the casting specs at first, that didn’t stop her from auditioning.

“The role of the Khaleesi is tall and willowy and blonde,” Emilia said at The Wrap’s Power Women Breakfast. “I’m short and round and brown. I somehow stumbled into that room and for whatever reason, they—maybe naively—decided to give me the role.”

At first, the actress followed the “fake it ‘til you make it” rule. The rest is history. Emilia went on to describe how she learned from her character along the way.

“I was trying to draw lots of comparisons with as many strong women as I could. I was very lucky, because there was such a journey within the first season,” she explained. “Through each different epic turn of events throughout that first season, I was able to kind of harness each strength that happened throughout that. And realize the steeliness that I could inhabit as an actor myself.”

For Emilia, it was important to take notes from an actress who had portrayed a similar role. For her, that actress was Cate Blanchett.

“Cate Blanchett in Elizabeth, that was something I watched a lot in preparation for Season One,” she revealed. “Within that movie, you get to see such a strong arc. And the fact that it’s rooted in reality was empowering, to say the least. To know that I was able to replicate a real, strong female leader.”

Yes, yes, yes! We love seeing strong women empowering each other. Whether Emilia realizes it or not, there are already girls watching and mimicking her own powerful acting presence and confidence. She’s already proven a great role model for the next generation of young actresses. Thus, the cycle of awesomeness continues.


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(Featured image via HBO)

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