Why House of Dragon Separated Older and Younger Cast for Alicent and Rhaenyra

When audiences tune in to the Game of Thrones spin-off House of the Dragon on Monday, there will be a few changes.

The two actors, Emily Carey and Milly Alcock, who played young frenemies Queen Alicent Hightower and Princess Rhaenyra respectively, have been recast as the show’s time skips forward a decade for its sixth episode.

Olivia Cooke will now take on the role of Queen and Emma D’Arcy will play the Princess. While playing the same characters at different stages of their lives, the producers decided they didn’t want the couples to meet during production.

Alcock told Reuters: “There was no relay to pass. I haven’t spoken to Emma. I’ve only met them a few times, which is why this whole experience has been so strange, telling himself “Oh, we play the same person, but I’ve never really met you.”

Confirming those stipulations, Carey said at the House of the Dragon premiere: “It was kind of very clear pretty quickly that it was a choice and not an accident that we didn’t come across and I think that what it is is that in 10 years you change a lot, especially when you see someone go from little girls to full women, there’s a huge amount of change that happens. It was almost like we were playing two different characters, two very, very different people.

Cooke, however, was unaware that the acting pairs were not supposed to interact with each other, despite filming at the same time, and said she had spoken to them at times. She only learned the arrangement at the premiere in Hollywood.

“I just heard they were told to stay away from us and me and Emma never got the memo to stay away from them so we were just like ‘Oh my god how do you like that ? What’s going on?’ and maybe that was really bad for their process.

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