House of the Dragon premiere: Foxtel’s CEO insults Emilia Clarke, describing her as the ‘short, dumpy girl’

Emilia Clarke stars as Daenerys Targaryen in Episode 4 of HBO's Game of Thrones Season 8
Emilia Clarke stars as Daenerys Targaryen in Episode 4 of Game of Thrones Season 8. Pic credit: HBO/Helen Sloan

With House of the Dragon only days away from dropping its debut episode, premiere events have been occurring around the world.

In Australia, House of the Dragon will premiere on the Foxtel service, which houses all of the HBO shows.

At the recent premiere event held in Sydney to honor the new show, the Foxtel CEO Patrick Delany managed to offend Emilia Clarke and horrify everyone around him when he referred to Clarke as that “short, dumpy girl” from Game of Thrones.

In the original series, Clarke portrayed Daenerys Targaryen, the last surviving member of the once-impressive Targaryen family.

The character had a spectacular rise to fame, amassing a huge army and storming Westeros to claim the Iron Throne. However, she also had a rather spectacular fall, succumbing to the traits of her family and razing King’s Landing with her dragon, Drogon.

So, the Foxtel CEO is definitely lucky Emilia Clarke does not possess a dragon as he most likely would have suffered the same fate as those who went against Daenerys in the TV show.

Emilia Clarke stars as Daenerys Targaryen in Episode 9 of HBO's Game of Thrones Season 5
Emilia Clarke stars as Daenerys Targaryen in Episode 9 of Game of Thrones Season 5. Pic credit: HBO

Foxtel CEO makes huge blunder

The Australian premiere of House of the Dragon occurred in Sydney and many celebrities were present at the prestige event.

It was here that those attending could get their first glimpse at Episode 1 before it dropped to Foxtel on Monday morning (the equivalent of Sunday night ET.)

Before the episode aired, Foxtel’s long-time CEO, Patrick Delany, made a speech that shocked those attending.

During his speech, Delany admitted that he was a latecomer to watching Game of Thrones.

“I was like, ‘What’s this show with the short, dumpy girl walking into the fire?” Delany said, according to Crikey.

Attendees were shocked at what Delany said, one person even saying that “there was a bit of a gasp” in response to the comment.

A statement is issued by Foxtel

After the comment, Foxtel issued a statement trying to explain away the ill-fated words.

“The aim was to convey that for him, Games of Thrones was something very different for television in 2011 and that Emilia Clarke went from relatively unknown to one of the most recognized and most-loved actors in television and film,” a Foxtel Group spokesperson told Crikey.

“On behalf of Mr. Delany, the Foxtel Group apologizes if his remarks were misunderstood and caused any offense.”

According to Metro, Emilia Clarke has not made an official statement regarding the initial comment by Delany or Foxtel’s apology and attempt at explaining his words.

Season 1 of House of the Dragon will premiere on August 21 on HBO Max.

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