Company Apologizes After CEO Calls Emilia Clarke A 'Short, Dumpy Girl' At 'House Of The Dragon' Premiere
Australian paid television broadcasting company Foxtel has apologized for its CEO Patrick Delaney's inappropriate remarks about actress Emilia Clarke during the Sydney premiere of HBO's House of the Dragon.
For some reason, Delaney apparently thought it was acceptable to refer to Clarke as a "short, dumpy girl" during his speech at the premiere.
As he relayed the story of how he was late to start Game of Thrones, he said:
"I was like, 'What's this show with the short, dumpy girl walking into the fire?'"
According to Australian news site Crikey, two attendees said fellow audience members were quite uncomfortable with Delaney's quip.
"It felt like he was expecting us to laugh along but people in the room were obviously shocked by it."
"There was a bit of a gasp."
Foxtel has since issued what is essentially a non-apology for Delaney's words:
"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. On behalf of Mr Delany, the Foxtel Group apologises if his remarks were misunderstood and caused any offence."
Twitter was largely disappointed but unsurprised by Delaney thinking this was an acceptable anecdote to share in a public setting.
\u201cGenie: okay you know the drill, 3 wishes, no wishing for more\u2014\n\nMe: I only have one.\n\nGenie: ok\n\nMe: six months of white men being unable to tell us their opinions \n\nhttps://t.co/0KS6F68wjG\u201d— Jessica Price (@Jessica Price) 1660789081
Several people commented on the fact the non-apology came from Foxtel and not from Delaney himself.
\u201c@Delafina777 Having a half-hearted non-apology delivered by someone else is impressively thorough gutlessness.\u201d— Jessica Price (@Jessica Price) 1660789081
\u201c@crikey_news @cameronwilson I\u2019ve fixed it: \u201cThe Foxtel group apologises if the remarks were understood \u2026\u201d\u201d— Crikey (@Crikey) 1660700031
Quite a few were confused by the attempt to spin Delaney's comment as "self deprecating" when he was, in fact, insulting someone else's appearance and not his own.
\u201c@Delafina777 ... How can a joke about someone else's appearance be self deprecating?\u201d— Jessica Price (@Jessica Price) 1660789081
\u201c@Delafina777 His remarks were meant to be self-deprecating? \ud83e\uddd0\ud83e\udd28\u201d— Jessica Price (@Jessica Price) 1660789081
\u201c@WiCnet He seems to have problems understanding the meaning of simple words, like \u2018dumpy\u2019 and \u2018self-deprecating\u2019 and \u2018apology\u2019\u201d— Winter is Coming (@Winter is Coming) 1660759495
There were several calls for Delaney to see actual consequences for his remark.
House of the Dragon is set to release on HBO and HBO Max on August 21, 2022 at 9pm EST.