Actor Iwan Rheon, who played Ramsay Bolton on Game of Thrones, has said that filming a controversial rape scene was ‘horrible’. The scene showed the wedding night rape of Sansa Stark, and took place in the season five episode Unbowed, Unbent, Unbroken.
“It was the worst day of my career,” the actor said in an interview, adding that ‘nobody wanted to be there’. His character was eventually killed off.
He told Metro, “That was horrible. Nobody wanted to be there. Nobody wants to do that, but if it’s telling a story then you have to tell it truthfully. They didn’t sensationalise it or anything. It was very, very hard watching. It’s a horrible thing that happens, unfortunately, and it shouldn’t be. It was the worst day of my career.”
He added, “Chopping someone’s finger off you don’t really see it, and when you’re doing like a close up, it’s a piece of plastic. We’re just acting, it’s not real. Then something like that where you’re in the actual reality of the situation is very difficult to deal with. It was a horrible, horrible day. This is something that we shouldn’t even have to worry about, because it’s something that shouldn’t exist in this world but unfortunately it does.”
This isn’t the first time that Rheon has spoken about the scene. In a 2015 interview, he had said, “Of all the terrible things Ramsey’s done — and there have been loads — that was by far the hardest to shoot. It was a horrible, horrendous thing to do, and I remember having a little moment in my trailer beforehand. I was like, ‘I’m not sure I can do this; actually , I really don’t want to do this’ – I was struggling, to be honest. But, in the end , I just had to pick myself up and get on with the job at hand – we both did, me and Sophie. After all, this sort of thing goes on in the world all the time – it’s our duty as actors to try and portray such things as truthfully as possible.”
Recently, reports of several female actors having complained about the show’s sexual violence have come to light. Actor Emilia Clarke is said to have raised her concerns about her character Daenerys’ sexual assault with showrunners DB Weiss and David Benioff. Author George RR Martin said that the scene, which didn’t take place in his source novel, ‘made it worse, not better’.
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