While many of the residents of Westeros might be thrilled to say goodbye to the devious Cersei Lannister, the actress who plays her had a much harder time bidding the villainous goodbye. Lena Headey "broke down in tears" after wrapping Game of Thrones finale, the actress recently revealed to the Huffington Post.
While talking about the highly-anticipated finale season of Game of Thrones — which premieres on April 13 on HBO — Headey revealed that she found the process of leaving the set for the final time to be incredibly heartbreaking. "I didn’t think I was going to be emotional," she said.
However, as the actress explained, the second she wrapped her final scene in July, she got extremely emotional over leaving the show behind. "I thought I wasn’t going to let myself get to that point because I had the last day to get through," Headey said. "And then when I left and I got in the car, I broke down in tears and I was ... devastated."
Headey echoed those sentiments back in January, when she explained to Jimmy Kimmel that she tried to run away from the show's creators, David Benioff and D.B. Weiss, in order to hide how emotional she became. "I was like, 'It's been nine years, it's been amazing and I'm happy to go and find new things,'" Headey explained. "And I knew that David and Dan, our creators, were doing speeches ... and I suddenly got really emotional and I tried to head down the stairs, and they all rushed up and trapped me. They gave this speech, and it was really moving," she recounted.
Of course, Headey is far from the first cast member to reveal that they had a difficult time saying goodbye to their Game of Thrones character; in August 2018, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau told the Huffington Post that he, too, cried after wrapping the series. "It was a little bit emotional at the very, very end," the actor — who plays Cersei's brother and sometimes lover, Jaime Lannister, said. "It’s also just a build-up because throughout the season we had a lot of teary goodbyes and farewell dinners."
He continued, "When my turn came around, I really didn’t think it was going to phase me, but I have to admit that right when they said, 'This is a series wrap for Nikolaj,' there might have been a tiny bit of moisture in the air, just around my eyes."
Still, the Lannisters had an easier time filming the last few episodes than Kit Harington did, as the actor who plays Jon Snow admitted in January that the final season left him broken. "The last season of Thrones seemed to be designed to break us," Harington told GQ Australia. "Everyone was broken at the end. I don’t know if we were crying because we were sad it was ending or if we were crying because it was so f*cking tiring. We were sleep deprived."
However, Harington did concede that the difficult shoot made it a little bit easier for him to walk away from Game of Thrones for good. "It was like it was designed to make you think, ‘Right, I’m f*cking sick of this,'" he said, adding, "I remember everyone walking around towards the end going, 'I’ve had enough now. I love this, it’s been the best thing in my life, I’ll miss it one day — but I’m done.'"
And based on the cast's various comments about the very last episode of Game of Thrones, it seems as if fans might be a little heartbroken about leaving Westeros as well. In September, Harington told MTV that "I think not everyone's going to be happy [with the finale] you know, and you can't please everyone."
Regardless of what happens when the final season of Game of Thrones premieres in April, one thing is for certain: there's still plenty of drama and heartbreak still to come, for both the residents of Westeros and the actors who brought the fictional land to life.