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Lena Headey says she wanted a 'better death' for Cersei on Game of Thrones

James Hibberd

Lena Headey says she was a bit disappointed by her Game of Thrones character’s final season outcome.

Speaking to The Guardian, the actress said, “I wanted a better death” for Cersei Lannister.

The character perished in the penultimate episode as she was crushed to death in the collapsing Red Keep along with her brother/lover Jaime Lannister (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) while it was under attack by Daenerys Targaryen (Emilia Clarke) — Cersei’s poor leadership decisions leading to the literal collapse of the structure that represented her power.

“Obviously you dream of your death,” she added. “You could go in any way on that show. So I was kind of gutted. But I just think they couldn’t have pleased everyone. No matter what they did, I think there was going to be some big comedown from the climb.”

Headey previously told EW in an interview conducted before the final season aired that her reaction her final scene was “mixed” at first. “I wanted her to have some big piece or fight with somebody,” she says.

But then the actress talked over the scene with Coster-Waldau and came around to appreciating Cersei’s final moments. “The more we talked about it the more it seemed like the perfect end for her,” Headey says. “They came into the world together and now they leave together.”

In that last moment, staring at her brother, waiting for the end, Headey says, “It’s maybe the first time that Cersei has been at peace.”

Asked about her favorite Cersei scenes across her long list of standout moments, Headey chose a few. “I had a lot of great ones — that one with Mark Addy [Robert Baratheon] back in the first season,” she says. “Those early scenes with Tyrion where you saw their relationship develop. The stuff with Sophie early on. Everything that shaped these characters. The scene where she tells her father that her and Jaime were lovers. We had some great stuff. I love the juicy dark emotional moments.”

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