Interview with Amrita Acharia
By Fire And Blood on in Editorial, Press.

As Michael Palin once famously said, “This is supposed to be an ‘appy occasion! Let’s not bicker and argue about ‘oo killed ‘oo.” And right now I’m listening to my inner Swamp Castle king, because I was tempted to begin this interview with a rant about how ungainly and wasteful it was to kill off Amrita Acharia’s Irri at the end of “The Old Gods and the New.” But that’s a rail for another day, Gatehouse faithful. This is a happy occasion!

I’d been dying to talk to Amrita (“Ami” to her friends) ever since Irri and Rakharo shared that nuance-filled conversation about rabbits and ducks and goats and dogs, back in season one’s “Lord Snow” episode. The subtle looks and the crackling chemistry between Acharia and Elyes Gabel spawned more than a few rumors and launched more than a few ‘ships, not to mention spawned a Tumblr site or two. I was dying to pick her brain regarding some of the subtleties I had picked up.

It just so happened she was visiting L.A.! In between HBO pressers and production meetings, I was fortunate enough to meet Amrita through a mutual friend, LA-based actor and fellow nerd Jake Stormoen (a talented young man who also routinely gets abused by Kristian Nairn on World of Warcraft). Ami joined me and a handful of fellow fans at the La Cienega Cuban restaurant Versailles, where we partook of savory garlic chicken, fluffed rice and beans, and fried plantains. We spent the evening mocking Jake’s priestly garb, showing off FaB’s infamous zombie eye, and making short jokes at Amrita’s expense. A lovely time was had by all.

The one thing I didn’t do was interview her! Thank god for e-mail.

Amrita is sharp-witted and personable, quick with her tongue or a saucy glance. I don’t have to tell you she’s insanely beautiful (pictures can tell you that), but nothing quite captures how lively she is in person. She has an almost dare-to-be-bolder-than-you outlook, and nothing—absolutely nothing—fazes her. She could hear the most raunchy jape and she’d just look at you with those gorgeous brown eyes half-lidded, a quarter-smile playing on her lips. Almost like she might be slightly impressed with your joke, but she’s heard worse, and is only declining to tell it because of the public setting.

I know that’s why they call it “acting,” but she actually seems to be the polar opposite of the quick-tempered, set-in-her-ways Game of Thrones character she portrays. In any other world, I could easily see Amrita playing the exotic bombshell—the cherry-lipped temptress who seduces with a look and a word. The best approximation I can give you is a more petite, wordly version of Salma Hayek, but even that comparison isn’t exactly right.

Probably best to say that Amrita is Amrita, and lordy—she can probably play anything.

Born in Nepal (she’s Ukrainian-Nepalese forged), Amrita moved to Norway at a very young age and basically “learned Norwegian from scratch.” She was schooled at the Academy of Live and Recorded Arts in London, and appeared in various British television series, such as Doctors and Casualty, before landing the role of Irri on Game of Thrones.

Fire And Blood: First of all … Hello, Amrita! Thanks for taking the time to speak to Winter Is Coming!

Amrita Acharia: It’s my pleasure, thanks for having me!

FaB: I’m gonna jump right into it, because I’m still in shock: When did you find out Irri was going to die this season?

AA: When I read my scripts a couple of months before filming.

FaB: It was probably my biggest disappointment in the season thus far. It seemed to me there were so many different directions they could have gone with Irri’s story, yet they chose this end. Were there ever any discussions about other ways for her to go?

AA: I’m sure there may have been many versions – I wasn’t personally involved in any of the discussions!

FaB: If nothing else she could have at least had a nice dramatic death scene. Sean Bean is famous for them.

(In a short but outstanding interview with Hanh Nguyen of seattlepi.com, Amrita talked about shooting a death scene that, for whatever reason, we were not privy to:

I’m waiting for Daenerys to come back so I’m running up the stairs. “Khaleesi, are you back yet?” And the dragons are gone. Out of nowhere, there’s a noose around my neck. I think it’s hard to be strangled onscreen because obviously to an extent to make it look real, you really have to be a bit strangled. So I had massive bruises on my neck the next day. I was proud. Battle scars. Death scenes are fun.

I’m still hoping that maybe we’ll get our very first flashback next episode and see that scene!)

FaB: If you could have chosen any other way to have your character die, what would it be?

No, this is not from Game of Thrones!

AA: Strangulation wasn’t a bad way to go – but I believe its going to be more dramatic if and when the killer is revealed! My ideal death scene would probably involve being catapulted out of a ten storey building, mainly for the adrenaline high.

FaB: That’s… that would be an amazing way to go, actually.

(FaB has to recollect his thoughts after that revelation.)

FaB: … Okay! There was a pretty loud outpouring of shock and dismay on the internet when Irri died. But I’m glad, at least, that you know she was loved, and that the work you put in was not in vain. Has the fans’ passion for the show surprised you at all?

AA: It did at first, yes, but I’ve come to understand that fans love every aspect of the show and pick up on the smallest of nuances! I’m glad that Irri made her own impact!

FaB: Speaking of surprises, there seemed to be a lot of people reading into Irri and Rakharo’s “relationship” even before there was one. The “rabbit and duck” scene in the “Lord Snow” episode drew a pretty intense amount of interest and speculation. Was a mutual attraction between Irri and Rakharo ever discussed with the writers? How did it all play out?

AA: The scenes were added in during the course of S1 filming – the writers are brilliant at great story lines and for me it was a privilege to be able to develop Irri more as a character. The rabbit and duck scene was a lot of fun because she gets to be such a stroppy woman in it and its pretty obvious she fancies the hell out of Rakharo!

FaB: Tell me your top three favorite Irri scenes!

AA: “Rabbit and duck,” as you call it! “Dany’s pregnant,” and “Rakharo’s death.”

FaB: And what are your top-three non-Irri scenes from Game of Thrones? What’s made you a fan of the show?

AA: That’s too hard – way too many to choose from!! If I choose something now, I’ll be biting my tongue later when I think of yet another one I love! I’m a massive fan of Joffrey’s scenes and obviously adamantly loyal to Dany’s storyline.

FaB: So let’s talk about Amrita! You are a London-based actress who was born in Norway, and speaks English, Norwegian, Russian and Ukrainian. Most Americans don’t learn more than English fluently (and sometimes not even that). What is your ancestry? Did your linguistics training make learning Dothraki easier?

AA: In bold strokes: I’m half Nepalese and half Ukranian, brought up mainly in Kathmandu, England, and northern Norway, and I think the U.S. should be the next stop. I love languages and if anything would love to learn more!! I’m sure being multilingual helped with learning Dothraki lines – I definitely enjoyed playing around with the sounds and figuring out the word order!

FaB: You’re currently visiting Los Angeles. I assume you’ve had some fun! Tell us about the best day you’ve had so far?

AA: Yes!! I LOVE L.A.!! I’m pretty sure I make a good California girl! My best day was a Saturday when not only did I get to sit on an amazing masterclass at John Ruskin’s School, but also got to weave, Californian-style, in and out of traffic on the back of a friends massive motorbike! The day continued with ice cream for breakfast and a road-trip – with the car roof down – to Ventura, cycling to the pier and then driving all the way back to L.A. for a bbq and hot tub. By far the best thing about this trip is the amazing friends I’ve met and beig able to experience a bit of the industry out here. It’s a very different place than the UK!

FaB: That sounds insanely fun. Would that I were a hot young actress! Did you land a bunch of meetings? Any possible projects in the works? Or is it still hush-hush?

AA: I had some meetings – we’ll see what comes of them!

FaB: I was hoping to hear our mutual friend Jake Stormoen had been tied up and trapped in the form of a yoga pretzel by now but no such luck. Is he a proper tour guide? Hopefully he didn’t charge you for gas.

AA: Yeah, he charges by the hour – only joking! I’m not gonna big him up too much, I don’t want him to get too cocky… ;) But yes he was a brilliant tour guide, friend and fellow actor and he spoilt me silly! And he did get roped into Bikram, but was actually not too bad. Nothing resembling pretzels though.

FaB: You are a proud yoga practitioner. Do you think there is a Dothraki equivalent to yoga?

AA: I’m not actually that great at other yoga – Bikram is pretty much the only one I do because its crazy intense – I’m rubbish at meditation, so Bikram is the closest I get. The Dothraki equivalent? Probably playing catch with slaughtered traitors.

FaB: That’s… both frightening and awesome. In a recent interview with HitFix, you mentioned you and your little sister used to put together these make-believe little clubs. I’m oddly intrigued by the thought of an “Ancient Egyptian” club. Tell me about this thing!

AA: She will kill me if she reads this! We had tons of secret clubs growing up, we had mental imaginations and loved pretending to be other people/ time-travelling/ going on treasure hunts or spying on people. I think most kids do? Our Ancient Egyptian one was the same. We pretended to be Egyptian gods of animals, herbs, war, or whatever. We did make some brilliant membership cards that I’m sure are stuffed in a box somewhere!

FaB: You could pass for Egyptian. You could probably pass for a lot. The sky’s the limit! Have you ever read for a role and immediately thought, “Wow, I’m so not what they’re looking for in this role”?

AA: Well I guess if I get “Pale blonde blue-eyed” in the breakdown… as much of a mix I am, I probably can’t pull that off – but in general it’s my job to transform as well as I can!

FaB: Let’s go back to the start. It seems like Nina Gold almost always gets it right (We always say “In Nina Gold We Trust” at WiC) and it felt like you were cast perfectly. What was the auditioning process like for Irri?

AA: The auditioning was as they usually go. You come in, do your damn best, pretend to forget about it but actually keep fingers toes everything crossed, wait a bit, then you get called back, repeat the process and wait some more… and next thing you know you’re part of this epic journey called Game of Thrones.

FaB: Other than learning Dothraki, what was the hardest part about playing Irri?

AA: The sandals. My feet aren’t made for Dothraki sandals!

FaB: In season one, just before Viserys got a pot of gold dumped on his head in “A Golden Crown,” Irri translates his drunken rant to Khal Drogo, a scene I thought you played brilliantly. There were so many conflicting emotions in your eyes. What was going through Irri’s mind during that scene?

AA: Well she’s the only one that could translate fast enough. The threats he was coming out with weren’t exactly acceptable, especially not by Dothraki standards. So repeating those words aloud was terrifying for Irri… don’t shoot the messenger comes to mind! There was no knowing how the khal would react, the Dothraki knew this Viserys dude was unhinged – and that made him unpredictable. But it’s her duty and she did her duty. Irri doesn’t take s*** and she won’t have her khaleesi take it either, even from her brother.

FaB: A lot of fans thought you were absolutely heartbreaking in “The Night Lands,” when Irri learns of Rakharo’s death. But what impressed me was the ability to speak Dothraki AND cry on-camera at the same time. How did you approach that scene?

AA: It really was a great scene to do, and the Dothraki language is pretty harsh and emotional anyway. Irri just found her beau’s decapitated head in a bag in the middle of the Red Waste, and she never told him she fancied him. That’s rough. Irri was NOT a happy bunny that day. That was my approach to it.

FaB: Haha! “Not a happy bunny” indeed! What was it like working with Elyes Gabel?

AA: A lot of fun, and again like all the actors on set, very inspiring. He’s a brilliant actor and gives lot to play off.

FaB: Weirdly, after interviewing a number of actors, that seems to be one of the most appreciated qualities to find in other actors. Being “giving,” allowing your fellow actors the time and space and opportunity to act and react. I guess it’s something non-actors just don’t consider. Irri’s friendship with Daenerys felt pretty natural. How long did it take for you to form a good chemistry with Emilia Clarke?

AA: Emilia is one of the most easygoing, down-to-earth and dedicated people I’ve met. And she has a sense of humour. So it wasn’t hard at all!

FaB: You are friends with Laura Pradelska outside of the show. What can we expect from Quaithe? Or is Quaithe a mystery you cannot speak of?

AA: I am indeed friends with Laura, she’s a huge inspiration and a ton of fun! And yes Quaithe is a mystery, you should know better than ask! ;)

FaB: Drat. Oh, well. Rakharo’s death was very shocking, though it was rumored Elyes Gabel was leaving the show. We had NO such hint about you. Is there a feeling like the show is taking away Dany’s connection with the Dothraki, or will Kovarro somehow step up and remind Dany of the Dothraki’s greatness? He doesn’t seem to be overly bright.

AA: Don’t say that! Kovarro is the bomb!!! He’s true Dothraki! I think the Dothraki have played a huge part in Dany’s development and her husband was the greatest Dothraki, so I believe Dany will always have a spot for the Dothraki in her heart. She understands them.

FaB: If you had one wish for Dany in the future, what would it be?

AA: To win. And maybe find a good king for herself too.

FaB: Pop culture time! Tell us three songs that you most often listen to? What’s on your iPod?

AA: “Throne” by Lil Wayne, anything from “Watch the Throne” by Jay-Z and Kayne West… just kidding! Okay, so right now:

1) “CRAZY” (Gnarls Barkley)
2) “Sexual Healing” (Marvin Gaye) and at the moment – sorry, but…
3) “Good Feeling” (Flo Rida) – I’m blaming L.A. for that one.

(FaB: I think she was humming this song at Versailles…)

FaB: Favourite television show (besides Game of Thrones)?

AA: Mad Men! I’ve also belatedly started watching Breaking Bad as well.

FaB: I love both of those shows. Last question—and this is one I take a lot of heat for: I am in the midst of a personal crusade, which is to remove the colour INDIGO from the seven-colour spectrum, on the basis that it makes no sense to be there. Thus far in interviews I’ve done with GoT cast members, most of them remain pro-indigo (Sophie Turner, Lena Headey, Aimee Richardson, and now even Emilia Clarke and Nikolaj Coster-Waldau), with John Bradley being the only holdout to stand steadfast by my side. So my very important question to you is… can you support my ban of that wretched seventh colour, or is indigo too important to be taken from your everyday life?

AA: I’m sorry but indigo needs to remain. The more colours the merrier! I know you’re doing the hurt puppy look but its not going to work. Pro indigo.

FaB: Dratmonkeys! I think I’m losing this war. Richardson and Turner will never let me hear the end of it. Well, thank you once again for taking the time to talk with us! You are fantastic. (it is known.)

(Also, I’m not giving a hurt puppy look. But the zombie eye? Oh yes. Ohhhh yes.)

AA: You and your games! No, thanks very much for your time. It was a pleasure.

The pleasure was all mine! Thanks, Ami!


65 Comments

  1. fuelpagan
    Posted May 11, 2012 at 6:32 pm | Permalink

    Woot

  2. Ash
    Posted May 11, 2012 at 6:43 pm | Permalink

    2nd!!!!!!

  3. Arthur
    Posted May 11, 2012 at 6:49 pm | Permalink

    It does suck that they killed off Irri. I did personally like her a lot. From just an earlier episode’s scene I thought she would be here to stay kind of acting as Dany’s Dothraki self identity consciousness. I don’t know if that wording makes sense but you all know what I mean. Not only was Irri beautiful, she also gave us a strong Dothraki persona that was very cool and irreplaceable. The only other Dothraki type figure that gave us that kind of persona was Khal Drogo.

    I now have concerns with what D&D plan to do with Dany’s story. Throughout all the books she has retained her Dothraki identity.

    Dany will always be a Khaleesi to me. My concern now lays with her sourounding characters. With no Irri there, who will be there to represent the Dothraki way to Dany. I don’t want her to succum to the permanent use of “bunny ears”, I want her to remain that badass Dothraki mother of dragons girl I’ve grown to love in the books.

    Irri will be missed. She WAS the Dothraki and now she is gone.

  4. Lex
    Posted May 11, 2012 at 6:49 pm | Permalink

    These exclusive interviews are great. It’s super cool of the actors to communicate with the fan base like this.

    You da man, FaB!

  5. MW
    Posted May 11, 2012 at 6:53 pm | Permalink

    Eat your heart out, guys. Wow!

  6. Ser Eld
    Posted May 11, 2012 at 6:56 pm | Permalink

    Great and long interview!

    Irri, and Amrita, will be sorely missed!!!

    As a book reader, this is the first time Im really bummed over a death in the series. I did not see it coming. Rakharo was a long time coming, rumors and all, but this took me unawares.

    Alas, now I finally comprehend the empty feeling of loss all the new viewers probably feel when a beloved character (even a minor one such as Irri) are ruthlessly offed in the Game of Thrones… :-/

  7. robb117
    Posted May 11, 2012 at 7:03 pm | Permalink

    Shit.. she’s Nepali!!
    thats fucking awesome
    she might be the first to act on international TV show

  8. Ser Eld
    Posted May 11, 2012 at 7:05 pm | Permalink

    Arthur:
    It does suck that they killed off Irri.I did personally like her a lot.From just an earlier episode’s scene I thought she would be here to stay kind of acting as Dany’s Dothraki self identity consciousness.I don’t know if that wording makes sense but you all know what I mean.Not only was Irri beautiful, she also gave us a strong Dothraki persona that was very cool and irreplaceable.The only other Dothraki type figure that gave us that kind of persona was Khal Drogo.

    I now have concerns with what D&D plan to do with Dany’s story.Throughout all the books she has retained her Dothraki identity.

    Dany will always be a Khaleesi to me.My concern now lays with her sourounding characters.With no Irri there, who will be there to represent the Dothraki way to Dany.I don’t want her to succum to the permanent use of “bunny ears”, I want her to remain that badass Dothraki mother of dragons girl I’ve grown to love in the books.

    Irri will be missed.She WAS the Dothraki and now she is gone.

    You nailed my thoughts to a post right there, Arthur. I totally agree with you in every sense. But I give the guys the benefit of the doubt for now. They have done great work with making this a immersive TV series, not only for the fans of the books. It had to be a Game of Thrones Light, if there ever was to be a TV-version of these books…

  9. Eirikr
    Posted May 11, 2012 at 7:12 pm | Permalink

    Good thing. Now we’ll be spared having to watch “shocking” lesbian sexposition scenes with Irri and Dany in future seasons. One less distraction from the North!

  10. KG
    Posted May 11, 2012 at 7:13 pm | Permalink

    Death by skullduggery!

    Well … at least she can go ride around the Night Lands with Rakharo now. Maybe it’s better this way. (sniffle)

  11. Knurk
    Posted May 11, 2012 at 7:16 pm | Permalink

    This interview is probably very good, but I can’t read it because I’m currently hypnotized by that first picture.

  12. Ed
    Posted May 11, 2012 at 7:25 pm | Permalink

    Gggrrrrrrrr… I’m still holding out for Dany and Jiqui.

    Love the interview – she’s awesome.

    Eirikr:
    Good thing. Now we’ll be spared having to watch “shocking” lesbian sexposition scenes with Irri and Dany in future seasons. One less distraction from the North!

  13. Andrew
    Posted May 11, 2012 at 7:42 pm | Permalink

    Awesome interview, Axe! When I saw all those Zombie Eyes on Twitter, I was hoping it would result in a post here. Shame she caved into the pro-indigo peer pressure, though. Deep down, she really did want to join the crusade…

    …it is known. I’M SORRY, I COULDN’T NOT DO IT, OKAY?

  14. Mike
    Posted May 11, 2012 at 7:45 pm | Permalink

    I’ll be willing to do the extra scrolling if you could somehow leave Amrita’s headshot as the top story for the rest of the season, please.

  15. Mormegil
    Posted May 11, 2012 at 7:46 pm | Permalink

    So whats up with unseen Strangulations and this show?

    That’s 2 Strangulations (Brandon and Irri) that have been filmed but don’t actually get used in the show.

  16. Lannister_accountant
    Posted May 11, 2012 at 7:52 pm | Permalink

    She was nothing short of perfect and brought her A game to what could have easily been a throw away role for those only familiar with the television series. For book readers it was a CRIME to kill the character.

  17. Arthur
    Posted May 11, 2012 at 7:57 pm | Permalink

    While I understand the need for D&D to make room for new characters that will be arriving in season 3 as part of Dany’s entourage (Strong Belwas and Greybeard)… I probably shouldn’t bring this up but I feel compelled too…..

    If D&D killed off Irri for the justifiable reason of trimming down the currant cast to make room for new cast members to be added in season 3 that is fine. That being said, if stupid fucking Ros is carried over to season 3 I will be pissed! These last few episodes have been great without her. Keep it going!

  18. Joop Stroop
    Posted May 11, 2012 at 8:02 pm | Permalink

    I really don’t like it they killed her… I won’t complain just for the reason that they changed something, because most of the changes make sense and I think they’re doing a great job, but this one just does not make sense (yet).

    For one thing, the scenes with Dany in season 3 would actually have been a good reason to include some shocking stuff, because it made sense in the context and did not seem forced. That they will now probably do something similar with Doreah just annoys me, because Doreah is the typical porn star while Irri just had something a bit more humble and adorable going on.

  19. purplejilly
    Posted May 11, 2012 at 8:09 pm | Permalink

    AA: I’m sorry but indigo needs to remain. The more colours the merrier! I know you’re doing the hurt puppy look but its not going to work. Pro indigo.

    Hurray Amrita! She is on the side of truth and beauty!

    But seriously, thanks again, FaB, for a great WiC exclusive interview, and thanks Amrita for the interview! Her work as Irri was great and I was so sad to see her gone!

  20. Andrew
    Posted May 11, 2012 at 8:12 pm | Permalink

    Alright, before all out debate starts up on this post, I’ll do my best to explain why I think D&D had her killed. They neglected to invite me to the pre-production meetings, but I’ve had to adapt different things for scripts before, so maybe I can shed at least a bit of insight.

    Dany is a bit naive, but she would never leave her Dragons alone. At the time of the theft, Irri, or Irri and Doreah both would have been with the dragons, taking care of them. If Doreah was there, and survived (We obviously don’t know yet), then I’d say it’s because she hid. Their reason for keeping her alive generally seems to have been to highlight the conflict between Danys Westerosi and Dothraki culture, so to have Irri die defending the dragons, and Doreah hide, would be in line with that thinking. But overall, I believe the main reason Irri died is simply because they didn’t want to pull some far-fetched excuse to save her. That’s the part of Game of Thrones that we all love; if someone is put in a threatening situation, they’ll probably die. If the dragons were going to be stolen, and a dozen armed guards were killed, then they’re not going to simply leave an unarmed handmaiden alive. D&D made the decision to have the dragons stolen, and Irri’s death was just a consequence of that. It was never supposed to be the main story point.

    Alright, all that is indeed just speculation, but maybe it’ll give some people a bit of understanding about why Irri might have died. So let’s all get back to remembering Amrita’s excellent performance!

  21. Mrs. H'ghar
    Posted May 11, 2012 at 8:27 pm | Permalink

    This one shall miss the lovely and talented Ms. Acharia as Irri, she was a loyal and patient aide to her khaleesi. Ami really nailed Irri’s innocence and her wisdom, her affection for Dany and her pride at being a Dothraki. All with few words, and few scenes devoted only to her. Bravo Ms. Acharia, bravo! (Perhaps she won’t get a curtain call since she’s getting the interview?) Oh yes, the scene where Irri mourns Rakharro’s tragic return kills me every time, the tears flow. You nailed the agony of that moment better than many a veteran actor could Ms. Acharia. It is known. Big ups.

  22. Lex
    Posted May 11, 2012 at 8:30 pm | Permalink

    Eirikr:
    Good thing. Now we’ll be spared having to watch “shocking” lesbian sexposition scenes with Irri and Dany in future seasons. One less distraction from the North!

    Erm… I was looking forward to those scenes. :(

  23. Pastor_of_Muppets
    Posted May 11, 2012 at 8:31 pm | Permalink

    That death scene better be on the extras for the season two Blu-Ray/DVD, because I found the lack of deleted scenes in season one to be pretty disappointing. We knew they had shot the scene with the Mad King and Rickard & Brandon Stark from the shots of the Mad King in the first production featurette, and the show of Brandon strangling from one of the trailers. Hopefully they’ll let us take a look at these scenes for the second season.

  24. JeffCulbertson
    Posted May 11, 2012 at 8:33 pm | Permalink

    Oh man … Versailles is so awesome. I miss that restaurant.

    I still find it hard to believe that Irri is dead–I thought unconscious for sure when I saw it. I hope they explore her death a little more in the next episode. If we never hear about her again, I’ll be a little peeved. She deserves better than that.

  25. Mrs. H'ghar
    Posted May 11, 2012 at 8:33 pm | Permalink

    KG:
    Death by skullduggery!

    Well … at least she can go ride around the Night Lands with Rakharo now. Maybe it’s better this way.(sniffle)

    There there now (offering a tissue).

  26. Virtus
    Posted May 11, 2012 at 9:37 pm | Permalink

    Lex: Erm… I was looking forward to those scenes. :(

    They could just replace Irri with Doreah in them.

  27. Ingemar Svensson
    Posted May 11, 2012 at 9:42 pm | Permalink

    My favorite part about the scene where she translates what Viserys says is that she is actually psychic. In one instance she tells Drogo what Viserys says before he actually says it. Though you probably need to understand Dothraki to pick up on it.

  28. Al Jackson
    Posted May 11, 2012 at 10:15 pm | Permalink

    Andrew:
    Alright, before all out debate starts up on this post, I’ll do my best to explain why I think D&D had her killed. They neglected to invite me to the pre-production meetings, but I’ve had to adapt different things for scripts before, so maybe I can shed at least a bit of insight.

    Dany is a bit naive, but she would never leave her Dragons alone. At the time of the theft, Irri, or Irri and Doreah both would have been with the dragons, taking care of them. If Doreah was there, and survived (We obviously don’t know yet), then I’d say it’s because she hid. Their reason for keeping her alive generally seems to have been to highlight the conflict between Danys Westerosi and Dothraki culture, so to have Irri die defending the dragons, and Doreah hide, would be in line with that thinking. But overall, I believe the main reason Irri died is simply because they didn’t want to pull some far-fetched excuse to save her. That’s the part of Game of Thrones that we all love; if someone is put in a threatening situation, they’ll probably die. If the dragons were going to be stolen, and a dozen armed guards were killed, then they’re not going to simply leave an unarmed handmaiden alive. D&D made the decision to have the dragons stolen, and Irri’s death was just a consequence of that. It was never supposed to be the main story point.

    Alright, all that is indeed just speculation, but maybe it’ll give some people a bit of understanding about why Irri might have died. So let’s all get back to remembering Amrita’s excellent performance!

    Irri as a secondary character is not a plot driver, but George keeps a Dothraki ‘fringe’ on things Dany as dramatic continuity, it was a nice touch on George’s part, gezz that cast member could not have cost that much!
    Killing off the Tickler , for instance, is a change that works, the butterfly effect down the line can be taken care of.
    I just wish more imagination had of gone into this than the teleplay used.

  29. Dreamlife
    Posted May 11, 2012 at 10:30 pm | Permalink

    I LOL’d at “Kovarro is the bomb!” ^_^

    Amrita looks a little bit like my aunt when she was younger. Crazy!

    Anyway, Irri’s death was such a shock and disappointment. First Rakharo and now Irri! I’m afraid Dany’s Dothraki are dropping like flies and I’m not happy about it at all. I can’t be angry for Doreah, though, because she’s a sweet character and I’m glad at least she is surviving a little bit longer.

  30. Leuf
    Posted May 11, 2012 at 10:30 pm | Permalink

    That picture of her with Emilia, she can’t possibly be that much shorter than her.

    Like so many of the cast, Amrita made Irri into so much more than her limited time on screen ought to have allowed. And I kind of hate Dany now for going all “WHERE ARE MY DRAGONS?!” two seconds after finding her dead. That’s not the Dany I know from the books.

  31. Varamyr Fourskins
    Posted May 11, 2012 at 11:05 pm | Permalink

    She reminds me of Penelope Cruz. In other words, she’s purdy.

  32. John-Michael Lelievre
    Posted May 11, 2012 at 11:52 pm | Permalink

    My god that first picture is gorgeous! Good interview, does this mean we have another curtain call coming?

  33. ubderos
    Posted May 12, 2012 at 12:02 am | Permalink

    I like her… she made a supporting character memorable…. a beautiful woman too… gonna miss Irri.. her loss would have some influence on Dany’s character maturity…

  34. tysnow
    Posted May 12, 2012 at 12:33 am | Permalink

    Leuf,

    I agree, if Irri was dead, Dany would hae shown alot of emotion there, this is why I hope she is just injured. If not, that was poorly handled by writer, director, Emilia (who should have vocally made them change the scene) and D&D. Especially since AA is a fan favorite, so I hoep and pray this is not the case, if so bring AA back in another role, the sister of Irri or something.

  35. Violentos
    Posted May 12, 2012 at 12:49 am | Permalink

    I’m just so mad that there wasn’t any blood around Irri when she’s found. I didn’t even think she was dead… They could have made that scene much more conclusive with a heavier impact…

  36. Icebird
    Posted May 12, 2012 at 1:43 am | Permalink

    Irri’s death is bullshit… It is known

    A nice big middle finger to the readers? It’s bad enough reading the books and wondering who’s next. :( Thanks for a well played role Amrita!

  37. TJeff
    Posted May 12, 2012 at 1:46 am | Permalink

    This interview should have a spoiler sign, many of us didn’t even think Irri was dead. It is sad they decided to kill her in such a plain way.

  38. KG
    Posted May 12, 2012 at 2:13 am | Permalink

    Mrs. H’ghar,

    Thanks :)

  39. KG
    Posted May 12, 2012 at 2:14 am | Permalink

    TJeff,

    C’mon her lips were bluish gray and she was laying there like a carpet. It was clear to everyone that she was an ex-Irri – joined the choir invisible, and all that.

  40. lasadorian
    Posted May 12, 2012 at 2:33 am | Permalink

    i thought she mighta just drank the same crap the warlocks drank.

  41. Conor
    Posted May 12, 2012 at 3:07 am | Permalink

    Great interview (As usual)

    Hope we get to see that strangulation scene, maybe as part of the HOTU.

  42. John-Michael Lelievre
    Posted May 12, 2012 at 3:20 am | Permalink

    KG,

    Yeah to me she looked clearly dead. it confused me when people started saying “oh maybe she’s just unconcious.”

  43. Blood
    Posted May 12, 2012 at 4:00 am | Permalink

    Cool interview. I guess she died because they want to prune characters to make room for new ones, but I wish they hadn’t done it. She was really nailing the part and keeping the Dothrakiness of Dany alive in a way I doubt they can do without her. Maybe they don’t want to which is why they killed her, meh.

  44. Macha
    Posted May 12, 2012 at 4:23 am | Permalink

    Amrita is adorable, and such a fantastic actress! Irri’s death is the only major problem I have with the show this season; on the other hand, how cool is that book readers now get to wonder what happens next, along with everybody else? Feels pretty neat to me, so we’ll see how that plays out in the future.
    Great interview, FaB!

  45. Louisa
    Posted May 12, 2012 at 5:06 am | Permalink

    Irri isn’t dead. She was just sleeping. Oh yes, wishful thinking on my part.

    And can someone please explain like I’m a 5 year old the nuances in the rabbits/goats/duck conversation?

  46. Nagga's Kin
    Posted May 12, 2012 at 5:18 am | Permalink

    lasadorian:
    i thought she mighta just drank the same crap the warlocks drank.

    Xaro said shade of the evening turns the warlocks’ minds to mush, but they probably have lots of other potions as well.

    Your idea would have been an interesting plot twist: the warlocks tried to steal the dragons but failed and, they turned Irri into sleeping beauty to force Dany to come to their HotU. Xaro dismissed the warlocks as parlor tricksters but, Dany could find out from someone else that they are in fact the only ones with the antidote. When they reveal they’ll only make it available in trade for the dragons, which it turns out Jorah et al. had taken to a safe place, Dany goes ballistic. As much as she loves Irri, she has to let her die because the dragons are even more important. That would have been a highly dramatic heart-wrenching decision for the young khaleesi.

  47. Nagga's Kin
    Posted May 12, 2012 at 5:25 am | Permalink

    Louisa:
    [...] Can someone please explain like I’m a 5 year old the nuances in the rabbits/goats/duck conversation?

    Three thing come to mind:

    1) “A child of five would understand this. Send someone to fetch a child of five.” – Groucho Marx.

    2) “The quarrel of lovers is the renewal of love.” – proverb

    3) Rabbit season, duck season

  48. Norsk
    Posted May 12, 2012 at 7:20 am | Permalink

    Thanks for bringing Irri to life with such a badass personality! Looking forward to seeing more of you on TV or the big screen. (In the odd case that she actually reads this..)

    As a Norwegian myself, I can say there’s a lot of Nordlænning (northener) in this girl. Nepalese + Ukranian + Nordlænning is clearly a recipe for awesome!

    (And I hope they regret leaving the strangulation scene on the cutting room floor. Irri’s death deserved much more than what we were shown. That was disrespectful towards Irri’s character and us viewers.)

  49. Steve Hugh Westenra
    Posted May 12, 2012 at 8:00 am | Permalink

    Count me as someone extremely angry about Irri’s death (but super excited about this awesome interview!). Irri and Jorah were the remaining highlights for me for Dany’s scenes.

    I suspect maybe Doreah killed Irri (more interesting than the other possibilities I can think of, and the murderer being someone surprising would be a good reason not to show the scene last episode). Although I think this would be a cool plot twist, I don’t think its coolness is great enough to damage the overarching plot and development of Dany’s storyline by killing off all the interesting Dothraki characters.

  50. Nagga's Kin
    Posted May 12, 2012 at 8:53 am | Permalink

    Norsk: Irri’s death deserved much more than what we were shown. That was disrespectful towards Irri’s character and us viewers.

    It looked to me as if Irri was there with the dragons, quite possible trying to protect them against one or more strong men with nothing but her tiny frame and fierce personality. We saw no cuts or bruises on her body, nor any weapon near it, nor any blood on the floor. Both of her arms were stretched out, the left one with the elbow bent. The neck wasn’t broken.

    Her eyes were closed, even though muscles need to contract to do that. It’s unlikely anyone would have closed them for her as a mark of respect. It’s often too difficult for an actor to keep his/her eyes open when pretending to be dead, but in this case we only saw Acharia’s eyes for a few seconds at a time.

    Given Dany’s maternal instincts and the shock of the whole situation, it’s not surprising that her attention immediately shifted back to her dragons after she had run to and touched Irri. It doesn’t constitute proof positive that Irri died, she could just have been knocked unconscious. Double cliffhanger!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CT646cr9erY

  51. The Kingslayer
    Posted May 12, 2012 at 12:09 pm | Permalink

    She’s beautiful.

    I use to really trust D & D but I am beginning to lose faith, killing off irri was a ridiculous idea that serves no purpose.

  52. Nagga's Kin
    Posted May 12, 2012 at 12:51 pm | Permalink

    The Kingslayer:
    She’s beautiful.

    I use to really trust D & D but I am beginning to lose faith, killing off irri was a ridiculous idea that serves no purpose.

    Assuming Irri actually did get killed during the dragon heist, there’s no reason to assume it served no purpose. We’ve already seen that Dany ran over to Irri as soon as she saw her, which was after she saw that the dragon cages were empty. Finding her on the floor like that made Dany sorrowful and even angrier than she would have had “just” her dragons been taken. It was Irri lying there next to the empty dragon cages, not one of the other Dothraki nor Doreah nor Jorah, a fact I suspect will be noted in the next episode. She may never have wielded a weapon, but if she did in fact die, she did so at her post.

    D&D catered to the notion that a fictional character “deserves” a death scene commensurate with the esteem in which the audience holds her/him earlier in the episode with Ser Rodrik Cassel, but GoT is also about breaking conventions lest the saga become too schmaltzy. The contrast also slyly underlines how men are valued more than women in this fantasy world.

    On a somber note, good people do die suddenly in real life, too.

  53. aurorsand147
    Posted May 12, 2012 at 1:37 pm | Permalink

    i really hope, they mention Irri next episode because right now she just feels like an extra that died with the other dothrakis
    i would rip D&D apart if they replace Irri’s character with Doreah, Irri is so much interesting that Doreah, and imo Amirita is a stronger actress than Doreah’s actress

  54. TheBlackFlame
    Posted May 12, 2012 at 2:52 pm | Permalink

    The Kingslayer,

    Be careful with that kind of talk, the white knight brigade will label you a troll and immediately blast anything you say. I know from experience.

  55. Arthur
    Posted May 12, 2012 at 3:02 pm | Permalink

    TheBlackFlame,

    Lol… Yeah that is so true!

  56. TheBlackFlame
    Posted May 12, 2012 at 3:11 pm | Permalink

    Arthur,

    Fanboys gonna be fanboys……….

  57. Arthur
    Posted May 12, 2012 at 3:19 pm | Permalink

    TheBlackFlame,

    I just learned you can’t be to strongly opiniated on any particular subject or you tend to make enemies or annoy those who are on the opposite side of your opinion. Then from that point on they take jabs at you any chance they get, even months later on totally different subject matter…

    Funny how that works.

  58. thedancingj
    Posted May 12, 2012 at 9:09 pm | Permalink

    I’m just stoked to learn that she does Bikram!! (Proud Bikram yoga teacher here.)

  59. XenkanMonk
    Posted May 13, 2012 at 3:15 am | Permalink

    Maybe she’s messing with us. Maybe Irri is alive. Maybe there’s some hope?

    I didn’t even register that Irri died until coming online. Because Dany was all like “Where are my dragons?” and didn’t seem distressed about seeing Irri. I thought maybe she passed out or was poisoned or something. Seriously, WTF?

    It’s pretty disappointing, the most disappointing change. At least show that Dany mourns her, give her death some importance. I know the show is crowded with characters, but why Irri and not Deboreh who actually dies in the books? Acharia’s performance was awsome, and I always wanted Irri to have more lines at the expense of well, everyone else. I don’t like this stolen dragons subplot one bit. Seriously, wouldn’t a dude get noticed walking the streets with a basket full of freaking dragons? For book readers there is zero suspense since we know that Dany will get her dragons back anyways, so they killed Irri for nothing. I am mad.

  60. Snow
    Posted May 13, 2012 at 10:03 am | Permalink

    So is it confirmed that she is dead or what? I saw no blood and Im still in denial. We still have Doreah thou. But what does HBO have against the Dothraki?

  61. Tyrion4Lyfe
    Posted May 14, 2012 at 8:06 am | Permalink

    Eirikr:
    Good thing. Now we’ll be spared having to watch “shocking” lesbian sexposition scenes with Irri and Dany in future seasons. One less distraction from the North!

    Pretty sure that Doreah will fill that role, now (assuming she is still alive).

  62. goober
    Posted May 15, 2012 at 12:04 pm | Permalink

    damn.i was kinda hoping she just got clobbered in episode 206.thought she might come round or something in episode 207.bogus.
    i salute you amrita/irri.hot and so much more.

  63. loco73
    Posted May 16, 2012 at 1:02 pm | Permalink

    I’ll miss Irri as a character, one of the last, true and devoted followers of Dany…Amrita Acharia did a great job and will definitely be missed!

    I hope at least Doreah is still around!

  64. Daph
    Posted May 17, 2012 at 9:16 am | Permalink

    Going to miss Irri! Wish it was Doreah being cut :(

  65. Thiago Slash
    Posted May 18, 2012 at 2:49 pm | Permalink

    no me gusta the death of Irri. I still don’t see the point of it.
    here’s to hoping that D&D know what the heck they’re doing


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