Happy Birthday Emilia Clarke! The stunning British actress turned 30 yesterday. She is best known for playing Daenerys Targaryen in the HBO series Game of Thrones, for which she received three Emmy Award nominations. In honor of her birthday, here are 20 interesting facts about Game Of Thrones.
1. Emilia Clarke’s character has changed the baby naming game; in 2012 more than 150 babies were named Khaleesi!
2. That isn’t the only popular name from the show; Arya is the one of the fastest-growing baby names in the United States.
3. Do you remember the scene where Daenerys ate a horse heart for Khol Drogo? It wasn’t actually unpleasant to eat, as it was a three-pound mass of gummy bear-like substance.
4. The actress who plays Sansa Stark (Sophie Turner) adopted the dog that played her dire wolf in the show. The dog is called Zunni.
5. The dire wolves were played by Northern Inuit dogs for the first season of the show. In the more recent seasons, the dire wolves are real wolves that have been inserted digitally.
6. The show has been banned by the Turkish military.
7. It is currently the most pirated show on television.
8. The actor who played Daenery’s brother Viserys is the great-great grandson of Charles Dickens.
9. Alfie Allen, the actor who plays Theon, is the brother of Lily Allen!
10. Emilia Clarke is a natural brunette, but she doesn’t dye her hair blonde to play Daenerys; instead she wears a wig.
11. Most actresses in the show wear wigs, and each wig is seriously luxurious; more than two feet of human hair is used to make each of the show’s Emmy-nominated wigs.
12. After the first episode aired, Jack Gleeson (who played Joffery) said he received a letter from George R.R. Martin that read, “Congratulations, everyone hates you!”
13. The show’s Emmy Award-winning costumes are aged for two weeks so that they look worn-in, rather than brand new.
14. Peter Dinklage and Lena Headey were close friends before the show began, and Dinklage actually helped Headey land the role of Queen Cersei.
15. Do you recognise the actress who plays Catelyn Stark? It could be because she also played Mrs. Granger in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows!
16. The average episode of Game Of Thrones costs $6 million to make. Expensive!
17. Kristian Nairn, the actor who plays Hodor, came out earlier this year, making him the first openly gay actor on the show.
18. Peter Dinklage is a vegetarian, and all of the “meat” he eats on the show isn’t actually real.
19. The Dothraki language was created just for the show – and it contains more than 3,000 words!
20. The actor who plays Jojen Reed is actually 23 in real life, although his character is much younger. He is also the kid from Love Actually!