Be prepared for sex and violence, the star of the Game of Thrones prequel has said, while assuring audiences that the new series won't be "gratuitous".
British actor Steve Toussaint stars in House of the Dragon, set 200 years before the events in the global hit Game of Thrones, which faced criticism for its depictions violence and its inclusion of frequent sex scenes.
Toussaint has told audiences that the prequel which premiered on Monday in London will also include nudity and gore despite criticism of the original series, although not on the same controversial scale.
He said: “You’re walking this line between being authentic and being gratuitous and that certainly was the criticism.”
He also told Radio Times magazine: “There is some sex in it. There is going to be violence because it is a violent world. But we’ve tried not to be gratuitous.”
Game of Thrones, which ran from 2011 to 2019, was accused of sexposition - plot exposition delivered during sex scenes - which some critics found to be unnecessary for the development of the story and its characters. There was also criticism of the inclusion of scenes of sexual violence.
Sexual violence will not feature in new series
Emilia Clarke, the Game of Thrones star who played the lead character Daenerys Targaryen, has previously stated that she was uncomfortable with the level of nudity in the series, and revealed that she was in tears before having to shoot her numerous nude scenes.
Producers of the the prequel House of the Dragon have sought to address this in the new series, and have also given assurances that sexual violence will not feature.
However, sex scenes will continue to feature prominently, series star Toussaint has said, adding that these intimate sequences will not be superfluous but “necessary for the character” involved.
Despite the harsh fictional world in which the series is set, producers are also seeking to make the new series more female-friendly, with director and co-showrunner Miguel Sapochnik saying: “I want us to make something that addresses what I feel is really important, which is representation and gender equality.”