Lena Headey’s ‘Game Of Thrones’ Body Double Never Appeared In A Nude Scene Before The Finale

The season finale of Game of Thrones broke ratings records this past Sunday and it was partly due to one of the episode’s most memorable  — and talked about — scenes, Cersei Lannister‘s naked walk of shame. When watching the episode, most were taken aback at the sheer balls Lena Headey had to take on that particular scene. Or we would have if a body double hadn’t been used.

More than a thousand actresses applied to be Cersei’s double for the brutal scene and they were narrowed down to seven finalists who were subsequently flown out to Belfast to meet with the show’s producers.

Ultimately, an American actress by the name of Rebecca Van Cleave — who has apparently never performed a nude scene before this — was cast in the role and she has finally broken her silence about the experience:

“Lena was so good about walking beside me and guiding me into what Cersei was thinking and the movements,” Van Cleave says. “We were playing tag team—‘You’re it!’—and trying to make light of the fact we’re all covered in everything and going through this together…The first time I took off the robe there was all this anticipation building up to it. But it’s such an emotional experience for Cersei, you almost check out of the fact that you’re nude. You’re so in touch with the scene and what you’re going for.”

When recollecting the experience, Van Cleave told EW that it was “one of the scariest, most wonderful, most gratifying experiences.” She managed to take some joy in the filming of HBO’s iconic series in Dubrovnik, but she had to do it while being surrounded by hundreds of strangers — extras and crew members alike — who were throwing all sorts of food and liquids at her.

Sounds brutal but Van Cleave is nothing but grateful:

Of course having a show like Game of Thrones on one’s resume should help open some doors in Hollywood. Even though Van Cleave didn’t deliver any lines of dialogue in the six-minute scene, the actress tells EW that she is optimistic this experience will open some doors in Hollywood where, hopefully, the next thing she does “will have my head in it!”

(Via Entertainment Weekly)