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By Benji Wilson for Emmy Magazine, 9.2022

"Have you thought of making it about the women?"

It was Alexis Raben, Michel Sapochnik's wife, who started it. Sapochnik, the British director and executive producer of Game of Thrones, was well aware that, justifiably or not, Game of Thrones had a reputation as a particularly bloody, testosterone fuelled show.

“Let me clarify...” he says. “Game of Thrones has [some] really strong female characters. It also [depicts the] mistreatment of these female characters. That perception has followed it.”

Sapochnik was equally aware that his own episodes - Hardhome, Battle of the Bastards - had come to be lauded for their battle sequences and visceral depictions of violence. “As I’m getting older,” he says, “I find that violence hard to watch. I don’t want to be putting it on screen without there being some point to it.”

So he showed the script to Raben, who said: How about switching the focus to the victims?


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