For Emilia Clarke, portraying the Mother of Dragons Daenerys Targaryen on HBO’s Game of Thrones (GOT) had been the role of a lifetime. Playing the character across eight seasons had led to four Emmy nods. It also cemented Clarke’s status as a Hollywood star who has since gone on to secure various starring roles in film, television, and even theater.
In recent years, Clarke has also found herself venturing into independent films. And as it turns out, this is where her passion lies.
Emilia Clarke Stars In The Sundance-Winning Film The Pod Generation, Which She Also Produced
Since the end of GOT, the actress has been pursuing roles across various genres. And this time, she turns her attention towards Sophie Barthes’ The Pod Generation, a sci-fi rom-com about a New York couple who explores the use of technology in having a baby.
For Barthes, the film had been years in the making, having had the idea for it when she was expecting her first child over a decade ago.
“It was a very long process. I think maybe when I was expecting my first child I started having dreams, very strange dreams during that pregnancy and I think maybe this was the beginning of the process, and this was 13 years ago,” she explained.
“But then it evolved, and I didn’t write it for a long time. The process is mysterious. You never know how you come to write the story after so many years.”
Even after Barthes had written the script, however, there were still more challenges to bringing her vision to film. Much like other indie filmmakers, the writer/director had to secure funding for her project. And just when Barthes was ready to film, COVID struck.
Fortunately, however, Clarke signed on and that got things going. “Emilia Clarke came onboard very quickly, and we were able to put the film back on its feet,” Barthes recalled.
For Clarke, the film marks her first credit as a feature film producer and she became “hellbent” on getting The Pod Generation made.
“Honestly, this was something that I’m so fortunate to have a producer credit on it, but I was just hellbent to be in this movie and therefore needed the movie to exist for me to be in it, so it was kind of like that,” the actress said.
“So I kind of [came to have] this producorial role simply through my bloody mindedness of just desperately, desperately wanting to work with Sophie and desperately wanting to do this film. I have a production company and that has kind of been folded within this which is just the best thing in the whole wide world.”
She Says Indies Like The Pod Generation Are Where She Can Truly Be Creatively Fulfilled
For Clarke, The Pod Generation is just the beginning of her pursuit of independent films. In fact, she sees herself doing more of this as she explores other projects after working on huge franchises such as GOT, Star Wars, and Terminator.
“The thing that I want most for the rest of my career is to work with as many auteurs and filmmakers in the independent film space and be as creatively fulfilled as I possibly can be. And I’ve had access to some incredible experiences and been able to work with some astonishing people,” Clarke said.
“I absolutely adore high concept ideas and material. That’s the stuff I really enjoy reading as well, kind of magical realism. I think that’s where the joy and of storytelling comes into its own. When you are able to give someone a world that is not our own to explore incredibly big philosophical ideas. To do as many of those as I possibly can moving forward would be excellent.”
At the same time, Clarke also finds a lot of fulfillment in producing projects like these herself. “When you have so much skin in the game when you’re producing at the same time, it just becomes a more fulfilling role,” she explained.
Emilia Clarke Is Still Willing To Take On Big Franchises
That said, she isn’t turning away from big-budget franchises altogether. As many know, Clarke is set to make her debut in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) with the series Secret Invasion where she is joined by Oscar winner Olivia Colman and Marvel mainstays Samuel L. Jackson, Cobie Smulders, Don Cheadle, Martin Freeman, and Ben Mendelsohn.
And while Clarke is refusing to say anything about the project, the actress was happy to share her experience working with Marvel. “It’s like everyone at Marvel knows how to unlock the Rubik’s cube, and you couldn’t even possibly — I can’t do a Rubik’s Cube to save my d*** life,” she said while speaking with Collider at the Sundance Film Festival.
“It just works! I’ve tried to understand it, and I’ve tried to be like, ‘Okay, logically how is this, how do you guys, what’s the…?’ They’re drinking some water over there. I don’t know what it is. It’s fabulous. […] They nail it. They just absolutely nail it. I’m not the only actor to say that working with them is just kind of brilliant. It really is. We had a lot of laughs. They’re just so chill, and I think I’m not that chill, and I think if I were them, I would be so unchill all the time.”
Fans can catch Clarke in Marvel Studios’ Secret Invasion when the series premieres sometime in 2023. No release date has been announced.