Game of Thrones stars say goodbye to their characters: ‘I grew up with you’

“This woman has taken up the whole of my heart,” Emilia Clarke says of Daenerys, while Sophie Turner writes of Sansa: “Thank you for teaching me to be kind and patient and to lead with love.”

Helen Sloan/HBO

As the world prepared to say goodbye to Game of Thrones with Sunday’s finale, cast members bid their own farewells to the characters and show that have become such inextricable parts of their lives over the past eight years.

Emilia Clarke (Daenerys Targaryen)

Emilia Clarke, who plays Daenerys Targaryen, shared emotional thoughts on Instagram alongside a photo of her with castmates in costume.

“Finding the words to write this post has left me overwhelmed with how much I want to say but how small words feel in comparison to what this show and Dany have meant to me,” she wrote. “The mother of dragons chapter has taken up the whole of my adult life. This woman has taken up the whole of my heart.”

Sophie Turner (Sansa Stark)

Sophie Turner, who plays Sansa Stark, also shared a cast photo on Instagram, writing, “Sansa, Thank you for teaching me resilience, bravery and what true strength really is. Thank you for teaching me to be kind and patient and to lead with love. I grew up with you. I fell in love with you at 13 and now 10 years on … at 23 I leave you behind, but I will never leave behind what you’ve taught me.”

John Bradley (Samwell Tarly)

John Bradley, who plays lovable Samwell Tarly, posted a photo of himself holding his very first rehearsal and prep schedule, dated July 19, 2010, for the first week of the first season.

“Back then we couldn’t have known the journey we’d go on together,” Bradley wrote. “I wouldn’t swap that experience, or those people, for the world. Enjoy the episode and thanks for everything.”

Jacob Anderson (Grey Worm)

“GoT was like the craziest school trip ever. A six-year adventure weekend,” Jacob Anderson, the actor who plays Grew Worm, posted on Instagram Sunday. “Grey Worm. You went from a robot to a real boy. I’m proud of you. I’ll miss you bud.”

Nikolaj Coster-Waldau (Jaime Lannister)

Earlier in the week, following the bloody, controversial penultimate episode The BellsNikolaj Coster-Waldau, who plays Jaime Lannister, paid special tribute to Lena Headey, who plays his evil sister and lover Cersei Lannister. “The best, sweetest, most wonderful sister from another mother,” he wrote. “That was a fun decade.”

For us too, Jaime and Cersei. For us too.

Maisie Williams (Arya Stark)

Last August, after shooting wrapped for Maisie Williams’ character Arya Stark, she said she “bawled.” “I grew up with these people,” she told BBC Radio 1. “It’s like cutting an arm off.”

Fans (you)

On Sunday, the day it all ended, fans generally responded to the cast members with praise and gratitude.

Wrote one Instagram user to Bradley: “We fans will miss ALL of you! What an adventure we’ve had discovering all of you and your journey!” Wrote another to Turner: “You are our true queen! Congrats on all the work you have put in over the years.”

But fans also took the opportunity to share with the actors their disappointment in the ending.

Wrote one fan to Anderson: “Amazing seeing you on the show, but I honesty didn’t like the finale.”

Latest Game of Thrones episode a Song of Fire … and More Fire: “They say every time a Targaryen is born, the gods toss a coin and the world holds its breath.”


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