'Game of Thrones': Emilia Clarke Turned Down a Major Role Due to Nude Scene Reaction

Game of Thrones star Emilia Clarke said she turned down the role of Anastasia Steele in Fifty Shades of Grey because she was tired of being asked about her nude scenes in the HBO show.

In an interview with fellow actresses for The Hollywood Reporter, Clarke was asked about why she turned down Fifty Shades. While she would have loved to work with director Sam Taylor-Johnson, she did not want to get typecast as an actress willing to always do nude scenes.

"I love her, and I thought her vision was beautiful," Clarke said. "But the last time that I was naked on camera on [Game of Thrones] was a long time ago, and yet it is the only question that I ever get asked because I am a woman. And it's annoying as hell and I'm sick and tired of it because I did it for the character — I didn't do it so some guy could check out my tits, for God's sake."

Clarke continued, "So, that coming up, I was like, 'I can't.' I did a minimal amount and I'm pigeonholed for life, so me saying yes to that, where the entire thing is about sensuality and sex and being naked and all of that stuff, I was just like, 'No way am I going to voluntarily walk into that situation and then never be able to look someone in the eye and be like, 'No, you can't keep asking me this question.'"

Anastasia Steele was played by Dakota Johnson in Fifty Shades of Grey.

Clarke appeared nude in early scenes during the first episode of Game of Thrones, and occasionally throughout the rest of the series. She played Daenerys Targaryen in the series, which just concluded on Sunday after eight seasons. The role earned Clarke three Emmy nominations.

The last sex scenes Clarke filmed for the series were with Kit Harington, who played Jon Snow. Clarke said those scenes were awkward to film, and not just because they would later learn Dany was Jon's aunt. The two have a close friendly relationship, built up after working together so long.

"I'll tell him, 'Kit, stop being a d–... stop being so grumpy.' Like I would with my brother," Clarke told Vanity Fair.

"If you've known someone for six years, and they're best friends with your girlfriend, and you're best friends with them, there is something unnatural and strange about doing a love scene," Harington added. "We'll end up kissing and then we're just pissing ourselves with laughter because it's so ridiculous."

After Game of Thrones ended though, the big focus was on Dany's character change in the last two episodes. Even Clarke said she was surprised to see Dany quickly go from the Breaker of Chains to killer of innocents.

"What, what, what, WHAT!?" Clarke told Entertainment Weekly of reading those last scripts. "Because it comes out of f—king nowhere. I'm flabbergasted. Absolutely never saw that coming."


Clarke's next movie, Last Christmas, opens on Nov. 8.

Photo credit: David M. Benett/Dave Benett/Getty Images for The MS Society