Filed Under: Game of Thrones, Online
By Bill Burke
Source: Boston Herald
Actress thrilled to play ‘Game of Thrones‘ queen
Lena Headey realized she had struck a nerve with viewers of HBO’s “Game of Thrones” (tonight at 9) when her friends started telling her how much they loathed her character.
“I don’t know if it’s cool to have your mates call and say, ‘I want to push her out the window,’?” Headey said and then laughed from her adopted home of Los Angeles. “They hate her, but hopefully people will dislike her but realize there’s something going on.”
Headey plays Queen Cersei Lannister, – a willful, manipulative woman obsessed with increasing her power.
“She seems very hateful, very black and white. But I don’t believe she is,” Headey said. “It would appear so on the surface, but I believe there’s a history of abuse in her family, so she’s got a real history. She’s full of fear and distrust out of necessity. She trusts her twin brother because they’ve got a long history and relationship — a very odd and disturbing relationship.”
So Cersei is evil, but not really?
“This is the cool thing,” she said. “Every single character in the show continuously evolves and changes into the unexpected, which I love. Literally, every character. You think you’ve got someone figured out, and then five episodes later you realize who they are and then they change again. And everyone is plagued by their family history.”
“Game of Thrones” is based on a series of fantasy novels by George R. R. Martin, a one-time television writer who created an incredibly dense, complicated world populated by the likes of Cersei and her conniving family.
It’s not all backstabbing and usurping for the queen. Well, it is, mostly. But there are a few admirable qualities about her, Headey said.
“I like that she lives for her children,” she said. “Her children are totally her sanity. And she pours a lot into them, though not all good, probably. Though she believes it’s good for the sake of the bloodline and power. I admire that in a world full of men, she’s left to grow up and left alone and she’s trying to make it by herself. Obviously (her son) Joffrey is a sort of prodigy. He’s very impressionable and a twisted child. I don’t think she fully realizes yet what she’s creating, but it’s out of love. She doesn’t know any better; it’s a sort of cycle.”
The strength of Cersei is attractive to the 37-year-old actress, who formerly played the equally strong Sarah Connor in “Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles.”
“The best part of playing strong women is actually the weaker sides of them,” she said. “It’s the broken pieces you don’t really see. It’s something you see in Cersei possibly at the end of next season.”
Until then, Headey settles down on the couch every Sunday night with her husband, who excitedly calls it “‘Game of Thrones Night,’” and the two watch like fans.
“I’ve got my own favorite characters,” she said. “I really love the boys at the wall, Jon Snow and the new guy, Samwell.”
Is it safe to get attached to such characters, given that Westeros is such an unforgiving world? Headey isn’t so sure.
“He’s ruthless,” Headey said of author Martin. “I don’t know.”