‘Game of Thrones’ Star Emilia Clarke: Playing Daenerys ‘Taught Me About Lady Balls’

“She wielded such power, calmness and such poise,” Clarke says of the Mother of Dragons

Emilia Clarke

Emilia Clarke looks back fondly at her eight seasons on HBO’s epic fantasy series, “Game of Thrones,” and realizes that playing Daenerys taught her something vital about herself: “She taught me about lady balls,” the four-time Emmy nominee said.

No question about it, Daenerys became a formidable conqueror and ruler by the time the show ended earlier this year, and Clarke is the first to acknowledge that.

“She taught me what it feels like to be in a room and be heard. She wielded such power, calmness and such poise,” Clarke said in a new interview with The Daily Telegraph.

“She had a fierce intensity and made some incredibly tough choices. In Season 3, she had to start busting some balls, and as a 25-year-old standing in front of 500 extras, 150 crew members, six cameras, a drone, dragons and fire, I had to bring it.”

She added, “I felt like if I can do that, then the red carpet doesn’t feel so scary to me at all. So there’s a certain kind of self-belief that rubs off on you as a person.”

Yes, playing the Mother of Dragons, Protector of the Seven Kingdoms, the Khaleesi of the Great Grass Sea, or whatever you want to call her, is a tough act to follow, but Clarke doesn’t worry herself about those little things.

“I don’t feel pressure to follow up the show because it’s unfollowable. I’m not going to go off and be like ‘Oh well, dragons are my thing…’ I can’t be a crazy woman demanding dragons forever! ‘These aren’t as good as my last dragons!’ Can you imagine?,” she laughed.

But as good luck would have it, her follow-up project is a dramedy about a continuously unlucky woman in “Last Christmas,” written by Emma Thompson and her husband Greg Wise, and directed Paul Feig.

“It was pitched to me like, ‘Emma Thompson has written a movie.’ And I was like, ‘I don’t even need to read it. Yes, I’m in, I’m 100 per cent in,’” Clarke recalled. “I think she is the greatest human and with the double combo of Paul Feig directing, it was an absolute no-brainer. Worst-case scenario, we were at least going to have a wonderful time.”

“Last Christmas” opens in theaters on Nov. 8.