Hannah Waddingham and Lena Headey Reunited to Talk ‘Ted Lasso’ and ‘Game of Thrones’

One of Game of Thrones’s most iconic duos was Cersei Lannister and Septa Unella. Fueled by jealousy and a thirst for power, their relationship pulled fans into seasons 5 and 6 of the show. From a naked walk of shame to a grueling waterboarding scene, the characters hated each other to the end.

Lena Headey and Hannah Waddingham played Cersei and Septa Unella respectively. Despite being enemies on the show, the two are good friends in real life. 

Now Waddingham is on the hit Apple TV+ hit comedy, Ted Lasso. In July, she was nominated for her first Emmy award for portraying the complicated and fierce football club owner Rebecca Welton. For award season, Entertainment Weekly brought Headey and Waddingham back together to chat about their time on Game of Thrones and their success after the show. 

Here are some takeaways from their discussion. 

Lena Headey and Hannah Waddingham in 'Game of Thrones' in 2015.
Hannah Waddingham and Lena Headey in ‘Game of Thrones’ season 5 | Macall B. Polay/HBO

The ‘Game of Thrones’ waterboarding scene was traumatic for Hannah Waddingham

Throughout Emmy season, Waddingham has been vocal about how difficult filming her waterboarding scene was.

 “I know what I wanted to ask you, which we never really talk about because I think both of us found it to be quite traumatic at the time. Our waterboarding — or rather– wineboarding scenes in the old [Thrones]. People are always quite shocked that it actually did happen in reality. There’s nothing CGI’d and one thing I’ve said a lot is that both of us were quite uncomfortable about it. But as with all these things, you know that they’re not actually going to kill you. So you just get on with it and do it. It made wicked Telly.

Headey went on to say seeing her friend strapped down was difficult. “It made me feel horrendous doing that scene with you.”

However, Waddingham stressed that Headey was a compassionate and reassuring scene partner. “Do you remember me lying there, fully strapped down going, ‘It’s fine. It’s totally fine.’ And you were like, ‘Hannah, it’s really not fine. You look like you’re choking.”

Waddingham stressed that she made the best of it as an actor. “And then you go home and you cry. Bruised and battered with purple hair.”

Hannah Waddingham’s Emmy dress will have pockets

Headey, a five-time nominee, stressed how important it was that Waddingham went to this year’s Emmy ceremony. Apart from basking in her moment of glory, Headey was ready to see what her friend would wear. 

“And you need to go because I want to see whatever frock you turn up in because it’s gonna be amazing,” she said. 

Waddingham replied, “Well, it also has to be comfy cause I’m in my mid-40s, and it’s all about the comfort.”

The Game of Thrones star was not afraid to give Waddingham some fashion advice. “Listen, elastic waist and some pockets. You’ve also got to put a flask in there because they don’t really serve you anything.”

“If they don’t serve you, I need a definite pouch for snacks,” Waddingham agreed.

Lena Headey and Hannah Waddingham want to work together again

Headey ended the interview by asking what was next for Waddingham. It turns out, fans might be seeing the pair on screen together again. 

“You and I have definitely talked about doing something together, haven’t we?” Waddingham asked. “I think it’s a must,” replied Headey. 

“It is a must because there aren’t many people in an industry that you really dig and also think are alright at what they do. That needs to be capitalized upon. We’ll have to get our noggins together and do that. Definitely.” 

“And then some other knobhead will have to finance it,” Headey concluded.

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