Lena Headey reportedly made $48,000 per minute of screen time playing Cersei during Season 8 of 'Game of Thrones'
Every fan of Game of Thrones has their favourite character.
Some love the nobility and honour of Jon Snow; others identify with Tyrion's fast-thinking, even-faster-talking persona. But for me, the character who I enjoy watching the most, the character who (for me) best embodies how Game of Thrones wanted to set itself apart from the regular fantasy fare, is Cersei Lannister.
The de-facto villain in a show absolutely teeming with them, Cersei sets herself apart from her peers because of not only her spitefulness, political scheming and outright villainous nature, but also the steel and burning passion by which she defeats all her enemies to sit on the Iron Throne, even as they outmatch, overpower or outmanoeuvre her.
Pretenders to that throne have been coming for her for years, but she's beaten them all, and in a way, it's just Classic Cersei that she's able to go out on her own terms, reunited with her brother/lover combo Jaime, crushed underneath the rubble in the Red Keep.
You can see her death scene here:
Cersei Lannister is, of course, played expertly by Lena Headey, the British actress who really made her name in the corridors and courts of King's Landing. Now, with four Emmy nominations for Best Supporting Actress, Headey has definitely benefitted from appearing on Game of Thrones, but recognition isn't the only way in which she's been rewarded.
Breaking down Headey's salary for season eight, The Hollywood Reporter claim her salary is $1.2 million, but curiously, in the 434 minutes of Game of Thrones' final season, Lena Headey only appears in 25 of those. So... that's a pretty handy hourly rate, isn't it?
Fox News crunched the numbers so I won't have to, and figured out that she made $48,000 for every minute she was on screen, smirking nefariously, complaining that she didn't have any elephants or looking at Euron Greyjoy like she couldn't wait to kill him.
Keep in mind, she probably did a bit more work than just 25 minutes; a lot of her footage would have ended up on the cutting room floor, but still, it's just an insane amount of money, isn't it?
It's a sum she's going to have to get used to not having for a while; Headey said her goodbye to Game of Thrones and to Cersei in an Instagram post, saying to her followers: "there she goes."
"I loved her. I am grateful for the opportunity. Massively thankful for your encouraging and supportive love along the way," Headey says, and even not counting the salary, I'm sure the 45-year-old will miss playing one of television's greatest villains of all time.