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Secret Invasion: Are Emilia Clarke And Ben Mendelsohn Friends In Real Life?

Neither Emilia Clarke nor Ben Mendelsohn are strangers to science-fiction and fantasy properties. They're both fixtures within the "Star Wars" universe, with Clarke playing Qi'ra in "Solo: A Star Wars Story" while Mendelsohn is the nefarious Director Orson Krennic in "Rogue One." It's been a long time coming for the two to work together, but they finally joined forces as the father-daughter duo — Talos and G'iah — in Marvel's "Secret Invasion," playing on Disney+.

The two have a bit of a strained relationship in the show. Talos is a long-time friend of Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson). Meanwhile, G'iah has seemingly joined the side of the rebel Skrulls to overtake Earth. Fortunately, it seems like it's nothing but good vibes between the two off-camera. Mendelsohn spoke about their dynamic to The Los Angeles Times, which helped inform their performances, "We just kind of let ourselves venture into a bit of a magic zone. It felt like there was an intimacy that was just allowed to be and that was very good."

That camaraderie extended beyond filming, as the actor discussed how they interacted off-screen: "We'd sit on the bench and just talk about what it was like to grow up being actors because we both started quite young." It's always nice to see actors forming friendships through their work, and that can be observed even through their interviews. 

Ben Mendelsohn was intimidated to work with Emilia Clarke initially

"Secret Invasion" may be the first time Ben Mendelsohn and Emilia Clarke appeared in a TV show together, but Mendelsohn was a fan of Clarke's work well before that. In an interview with The Direct, the actor explained how he had watched all of "Game of Thrones" four times, so when it came time to star alongside the actress who played Daenerys Targaryen, some nerves were involved. He stated, "I was kind of like, I was nervous, right? I was. And I didn't know what to expect. And then you made meals and I was just like... And we had to sit by a lake with a lot of ducks, a lot of planes."

The feelings were mutual, as Clarke explained in the same interview, "I love working with Ben. It was so much fun. It was really easy, because obviously we're playing... I mean, there's tension all over the shop, but there is obviously a deep familiarity, and shorthand, and knowledge of each other that it's just so easy and free acting with Ben that it felt... It was just gorgeous." Reading about their friendship is one thing, but it's clear as day watching them interact when promoting "Secret Invasion." The two did an interview with Phase Zero, and at one point, Clarke talks about how she always had to sit up straight for "Game of Thrones," and the two bust up laughing. Mendelsohn even gets out of his seat at one point because he's laughing so hard, and you just don't get that dynamic with two people who are frosty toward each other. 

The forged friendship no doubt helped them throughout filming "Secret Invasion," which ended up being the happiest set Clarke has been a part of.