Foxtel Australia CEO sparks outrage after calling Game of Thrones star Emilia Clarke a ‘short and dumpy girl’ at House of the Dragon premiere

The CEO of Australian television company Foxtel has sparked outrage after referring to Game of Thrones star Emilia Clarke as a ‘short and dumpy girl’ this week. 

Patrick Delaney made the controversial comments during a speech at the Sydney premiere of HBO’s highly-anticipated series House of the Dragon on Tuesday night, Crikey reports. 

Addressing the audience, Delaney admitted he was behind the eight-ball when it came to watching the monumentally popular drama Game of Thrones, in which Emilia stars as Daenerys Targaryen. 

The CEO of Australian television company Foxtel has been forced to apologise after he referred to Game of Thrones star Emilia Clarke (pictured) as a 'short and dumpy girl' this week

The CEO of Australian television company Foxtel has been forced to apologise after he referred to Game of Thrones star Emilia Clarke (pictured) as a ‘short and dumpy girl’ this week

‘I was like, ‘What’s this show with the short, dumpy girl walking into the fire?” he said, recalling the famous scene in season one where Daenerys steps inside a burning temple. 

An attendee told Crikey that ‘there was a bit of a gasp’ after Delany made the comment, while another said the crowd was ‘obviously shocked’. 

Foxtel has since issued a grovelling apology on behalf of Delaney, who has been CEO since January 2018.  

Foxtel Australia boss Patrick Delaney made the controversial comments during a speech at the Sydney premiere of HBO's highly-anticipated series House of the Dragon on Tuesday night, Crikey reports

Foxtel Australia boss Patrick Delaney made the controversial comments during a speech at the Sydney premiere of HBO’s highly-anticipated series House of the Dragon on Tuesday night, Crikey reports 

Addressing the audience, Delaney admitted he was behind the eight-ball when it came to watching the monumentally popular drama Game of Thrones, in which Emilia stars as Daenerys Targaryen. Emilia is pictured in character

Addressing the audience, Delaney admitted he was behind the eight-ball when it came to watching the monumentally popular drama Game of Thrones, in which Emilia stars as Daenerys Targaryen. Emilia is pictured in character 

‘The aim was to convey that for him, Games of Thrones was something very different for television in 2011 and that Emilia Clarke went from relatively unknown to one of the most recognised and most-loved actors in television and film,’ a spokesperson told Crikey on Wednesday. 

‘On behalf of Mr Delany, the Foxtel Group apologises if his remarks were misunderstood and caused any offence.’

House of the Dragon focusses on House Targaryen and their reign in Westeros. 

'I was like, 'What's this show with the short, dumpy girl walking into the fire?'' he said, recalling the famous scene in season one where Daenerys steps inside a burning temple

‘I was like, ‘What’s this show with the short, dumpy girl walking into the fire?” he said, recalling the famous scene in season one where Daenerys steps inside a burning temple

Foxtel has since issued a grovelling apology on behalf of Delaney, who has been CEO since January 2018

Foxtel has since issued a grovelling apology on behalf of Delaney, who has been CEO since January 2018

Foxtel has since issued a grovelling apology on behalf of Delaney, who has been CEO since January 2018. Pictured L-R: Rob Collins,  Patrick Delany

Foxtel has since issued a grovelling apology on behalf of Delaney, who has been CEO since January 2018. Pictured L-R: Rob Collins,  Patrick Delany

'The aim was to convey that for him, Games of Thrones was something very different for television in 2011 and that Emilia Clarke went from relatively unknown to one of the most recognised and most-loved actors in television and film,' a spokesperson told Crikey on Wednesday

‘The aim was to convey that for him, Games of Thrones was something very different for television in 2011 and that Emilia Clarke went from relatively unknown to one of the most recognised and most-loved actors in television and film,’ a spokesperson told Crikey on Wednesday

Emilia will not be reprising her role as Daenerys in the ten-part series, as it is set 200 years before the events of Game of Thrones. 

Joining the cast is Packed To The Rafters star Ryan Corr and fellow Australian actor Milly Alcock. 

It also stars Emma D’Arcy as Princess Rhaenyra Targaryen, Matt Smith as Prince Daemon Targaryen, Steve Toussaint as Lord Corlys Velaryon, Oliva Cooke as Alicent Hightower and Rhys Ifans as Otto Hightower. 

House of the Dragon will be available to stream on Binge next Monday, August 22 

'On behalf of Mr Delany, the Foxtel Group apologises if his remarks were misunderstood and caused any offence'

‘On behalf of Mr Delany, the Foxtel Group apologises if his remarks were misunderstood and caused any offence’

Emilia will not be reprising her role as Daenerys in the ten-part series, as it is set 200 years before the events of Game of Thrones. She is pictured in season seven alongside co-stars Conleth Hill, Peter Dinklage, Nathalie Emmanuel, Liam Cunningham and Kit Harington

Emilia will not be reprising her role as Daenerys in the ten-part series, as it is set 200 years before the events of Game of Thrones. She is pictured in season seven alongside co-stars Conleth Hill, Peter Dinklage, Nathalie Emmanuel, Liam Cunningham and Kit Harington

Emma D'Arcy and Matt Smith in a scene from HBO's House of the Dragon

Emma D’Arcy and Matt Smith in a scene from HBO’s House of the Dragon

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Originally posted 2022-08-18 02:25:22.