To whet your appetite before the season eight premiere tomorrow, Sophie Turner and Nathalie Emmanuel look back on their long Game of Thrones journeys and tease the roles Sansa Stark and Missandei of Naath respectively will play in this final season.
Harper’s Bazaar published a beautiful feature with Nathalie Emmanuel, where the actress looks back on how she began on the show: “I had told my agent a few times: ‘I need to be in that show!’ But until [a casting call came out for a ‘non-white female aged 18 to 23′ to play a small part called Missandei], the likelihood of them casting someone who looks like me felt pretty slim. But when I saw the breakdown I thought, ‘That’s me!’”
“When it came to character work it was kind of difficult,” she says of her first days. “Because, in the books, Missandei is only nine years old. She is described as a very quiet, very still person. Kind of timid. But I didn’t really want that for her. I thought: ‘She has survived so much, so much horror, but underneath there’s this impenetrable strength.’ So at first, I created a person who was very contained. Then I got to play with the subtleties of her coming out of that, and having more freedom to think and feel.”
Missandei has come a long way from her reserved ways in season three, developing on her own and alongside Grey Worm, but her loyalty to Daenerys has been a constant. Will this hold in season eight? “I think it is very safe to say,” Emmanuel teases, “that the war is here for Daenerys, and Missandei marches right beside her, all the way.”
Head to Harper’s Bazaar for the original interview, including a wonderful video portion. She discusses the role of women in Game of Thrones, the wrap party, and more.
“Sansa this season is very much enjoying becoming a leader in her own right and the leader of Winterfell,” Sophie Turner tells James Hibberd at Entertainment Weekly, “and this year there are certain challenges of people who come into her life that threaten that. She has to go behind a few backs and risks tearing apart her family.”
“Her relationship with Jon is struggling because he’s so clearly in love with Daenerys and believes in her completely,” she elaborates. “Sansa thinks she’s power-hungry and not the rightful queen. There’s a huge amount of fighting between Sansa and Jon.”
Tiresome conflicts aside, Turner talks about her good friend and cast mate (and soon maid of honor) Maisie Williams, with whom she doesn’t plan on parting ways any time soon despite the end of Thrones: “We’ve more been talking about what can we do together. We’ll probably end up writing scripts and producing things together. I don’t think we’ll never work together again. The saddest part is I don’t get to be Sansa, she doesn’t get to be Arya, and we don’t get to interact on that level — which is sad because their relationship is a big part of who Maisie and I are. That’s going to be the saddest thing. I won’t see Maisie in her costume anymore, I won’t see Kit in his costume anymore. I won’t be able to be in my costume. We won’t get to play these characters.”
I think we will all miss that too, alongside with… everything else!