Screen Rant: House Of The Dragon Star Has High Praise For Matt Smith’s Performance

House of the Dragon actor Emma D’Arcy details their overwhelmingly positive experience with series costar Matt Smith on- and off-screen.

House of the Dragon actor Emma D’Arcy details their wonderful experience working with co-star Matt Smith. Alongside Smith and D’Arcy, House of the Dragon stars Paddy Considine, Olivia Cooke, Rhys Ifans, Steve Toussaint, Eve Best, and Sonoya Mizuno. The series will be a prequel to Game of Thrones, following the House Targaryen 200 years before the events of Game of Thrones. It was created by Ryan J. Condal and original series author George R. R. Martin.

The new series is still a couple weeks out from its release on HBO, but that has not stopped House of the Dragon fan predictions from rolling in already. Prospective viewers have already begun to express their enthusiasm for the Game of Thrones spinoff based on the show’s official trailer. While some theorized that the widespread disappointment felt following Game of Thrones season 8 might have smothered the demand for a continued franchise, it seems that many have instead felt starved for a return to Westeros that matches the thrilling heights of the series at its best.

D’Arcy may further add to that hype with their description of working with Smith during recent roundtable interview that Screen Rant attended. D’Arcy says they “actually really owe [Matt Smith] a lot,” crediting him with huge personal growth they have recently experienced. They offered profuse compliments of Smith’s acting, saying he “has such a gift for finding freedom on camera,” and is “electric” and “a gift of a scene partner.” Check out the full comments from D’Arcy below:

Honestly, it’s been so good. I actually really owe [Matt Smith] a lot, because I’ve learned a huge amount about my job from him. And we had some extended period of time where it sort of was just us.

But I’ll tell you that what’s really amazing is he has such a gift for finding freedom on camera. He doesn’t want to know what happens. He wants to surprise you; he wants the thing to live. And as soon as I understood that, not only is he a gift of a scene partner, but it’s also a privilege to know what someone needs. Knowing that, actually, it’s just a complete curveball at 6pm. You offer that, and someone is suddenly electric and with you and excited. It is a pleasure. He’s taught me a lot about doing my job.

D’Arcy’s comments bode incredibly well for the success of House of the Dragon, wherein Smith plays a crucial role. Their notes regarding his on-set spontaneity will not come as a complete surprise to those familiar with his previous work. Before House of the Dragon, Smith’s most popular role was playing the Eleventh Doctor on the BBC series Doctor Who, and he certainly brought an “electric,” bubbly charisma to the role. While he will take a much more dramatic approach for House of the Dragon, this playfulness seems to coincide well with the work that Smith has already done.

With House of the Dragon now just a couple of weeks away, fans will not have to wait that much longer to get a fuller sense of Smith’s Prince Daemon Targaryen. According to recent press, fans will be seeing a lot of Smith – while a House of the Dragon EP confirmed that the show will not depict the same graphic sexual violence that Game of Thrones did, Smith recently made comments regarding his reportedly copious sex scenes within the show. The actor later clarified these comments, but nonetheless he does suggest that House of the Dragon may be just as explicit as Game of Thrones, albeit dialing back the sexual violence.

Written by Hannah Gearan
Published August 8, 2022