House of the Dragon star Emma D’Arcy says their character felt ‘truthful’ to their own non-binary identity.
The eagerly anticipated Game of Thrones prequel will see fans transported back to Westeros for the first time since the acclaimed HBO series came to an end in 2019.
Set 200 years before the original series, House of the Dragon centres on the brutal civil war between Targaryen claimants to the infamous Iron Throne.
It stars former Doctor Who star Matt Smith, as well as actors Olivia Cooke and Rhys Ifans, with Emma portraying Rhaenyra Targaryen in the fantasy epic.
Reflecting on their character in a new interview, Emma, says the character of the tough, dragon-riding daughter of the king felt ‘truthful’ to their own identity.
Emma, who is non-binary, told the Hollywood Reporter that the character ‘has an ongoing battle with what it means to be a woman and is a fundamental outsider.’
The warrior is ‘terrified of getting locked into motherhood and is aware of how her position would be different if she were male,’ they went on.
‘I’m a nonbinary person.
‘I’ve always found myself both pulled and repelled by masculine and feminine identity and I think that plays out truthfully here.’
Rhaenyra is the first-born child and therefore, traditionally, the natural successor to the Iron Throne.
However, being a woman, the men in costumes aren’t exactly rushing her to power.
Fans got their first proper glimpse at the fantasy series last week as the full-length trailer finally dropped following a teaser which arrived in October last year.
In the trailer, a voice-over from The Crown star Matt, who plays Daemon Targaryen, says: ‘The dream, it was clearer than a memory.
‘When I heard the sound of thundering hooves, splintering shields and ringing swords, and I placed my heir upon the iron throne, and all the dragons roared as one.’
The gender politics and sexism are instantly thrown into the spotlight, as one man argues: ‘No queen has ever sat the Iron Throne.’
Another warns that Rhaenyra’s succession will be ‘challenged,’ adding: ‘Knives will come out.’
House of the Dragon airs on Monday, August 22 on Sky Atlantic and streaming service NOW.