Actor Lena Headey has criticised Game of Thrones directors for deleting a heartbreaking “great” scene that could have changed Cersei Lannister’s totally Machiavellian image.
Before you go further, be warned the rest of this story contains plot spoilers.
Appearing at German Comic Con this month, Headey revealed she had filmed a hugely emotional miscarriage scene that crushed Cersei, who had already lost three children in Game of Thrones.
“We shot a scene that never made it into season seven, which was where I lose the baby,” Headey, 45, said.
“And it was a really traumatic, great moment for Cersei and it never made it in and I kind of loved doing that because I thought it would have served her differently.”
In season seven, Cersei claimed to be pregnant again with the baby of her brother Jaime Lannister (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau).
Up to her death, it was never quite made clear if the queen of King’s Landing was manipulating Jaime – who was fatally drawn back to her side – and if she had lost the baby or was still pregnant.
She was still drinking goblets of wine but appeared to have a slight baby bump.
In season eight, Cersei also intimated to Euron Greyjoy (Pilou Asbaek) that they were expecting a child, which made fans think she might be plotting something big.
While her screen pregnancy ended prematurely, British actor Headey had two successful real-life pregnancies during the filming of Game of Thrones.
When season one was shooting in 2010, she was expecting her son Wylie, with then husband, hairdresser Peter Paul Loughran.
Producers used a body double and dressed Headey in long, flowing dresses and robes.
“We just hid the pregnancy,” she told Vulture in 2013.
“But even after that, I’m not a naturally pregnant person, so I was having all these hideous post-pregnancy hormonal moments, mentally, and that’s a completely other thing – I was not happy.
“But that helped for playing Cersei.”
Filming season six in 2015 she was pregnant again, with daughter Teddy to now-husband, filmmaker Dan Cadan. The pair wed in 2018 after knowing each other since childhood, according to The New York Times.
As well as spilling on the deleted miscarriage scene, Headey – who is on the PR trail for her film The Flood, with Game of Thrones co-star Iain Glenn – also said this week she was “gutted” by Cersei’s fate.
She and Jaime died in each other’s arms, crushed under rubble below the Red Keep as Daenerys Targaryen and her last dragon destroyed King’s Landing.
“I will say I wanted a better death,” she told The Guardian of her feelings about the speedy, vaguely cheesy demise.
“Obviously you dream of your death. You could go in any way on that show. So I was kind of gutted.
“But I just think they couldn’t have pleased everyone. No matter what they did, I think there was going to be some big comedown from the climb.”
She added that as a viewer “I’ve got a few of my own gripes but hadn’t yet had the chance to sit down ‘drunkly'” with show runners David Benioff and DB Weiss.
Another who wanted things to play out differently?
“I wanted to kill everyone,” Sapochnik said.
“I wanted to kill Jorah in the horse charge at the beginning. I was up for killing absolutely everyone. I wanted it to be ruthless, so that in the first 10 minutes, you say, ‘All bets are off; anyone could die.’
“And David [Benioff] and Dan [DB Weiss] didn’t want to. There was a lot of back and forth on that.”