For the last week or so, it’s been impossible for Game of Thrones fans to browse the internet without coming across at least one mention of Daenerys Targaryen’s stunt/body double, Rosie Mac. With her long, golden mane and her big blue eyes, Rosie is the spitting image of the Mother of Dragons. Browsing through her photos on Instagram, it’s clear that she’s much more than just the double of the stunning Emilia Clarke—not that this job isn’t a huge deal in and of itself.
Rosie Mac has been street and break dancing since she was just seven years old. She has appeared in numerous music videos, including James Blunt’s “When I Find Love Again” and Mika’s “Boum Boum Boum.” Soon we’ll get to see her dance with fire (an element she’s not totally unfamiliar with) and show off her acrobatic skills on the Discovery Channel’s new reality-show VivaGirls: Almost Famous. Paste caught up with Mac to talk Game of Thrones, keeping it cool and being a young (role) model.
Paste Magazine: How do you feel after having basically broken the internet last week?
Rosie Mac: (laughs) I just feel kind of spaced out, you know? It’s been amazing, it all happened out of the blue. The Lad Bible posted a story about me and I didn’t even know about it at first. I found out through a friend who tagged me in it on Facebook. It just took off from there and I’ve been getting offers from all over—FHM London, New York Model Management. My family kept looking at new posts coming in online and couldn’t believe it!
Paste: You have a background in dance. Is this how your career in the modeling world started out?
Mac: I’ve been dancing since I was very young. I won the World Championship of Street Dance; I do ballet and teach Zumba in the summer. The modeling happened by coincidence really; I was approached by a photographer in Marbella when I was fourteen-years-old. He asked me if I was interested in shooting with him one day. I was still very young, so I asked my parents to come along. Things took off from there.
Paste: Of course the burning question on everyone’s mind concerns your current work. How did you end up being the body double for Emilia Clarke as Daenerys Targaryen on Game of Thrones?
Mac: I didn’t actually go to the audition because I had another modeling job that day. To be honest, I kind of thought, “Why would they choose me anyway?” That same day I posted a selfie on Twitter, and I was wearing long, blonde hair. A while later I was asked by one the agencies I am signed with to send in my body measurements, but they didn’t tell me what for. Turns out the director had seen my photo and felt I fit right in, so I was told to be ready in five days! Luckily Seville is only about four hours from here. My mum would come up every Saturday when I had the day off. When I was invited to Emilia Clarke’s birthday party, my mum drove up to bring me some clothes because I was panicking—I had nothing to wear!
Paste: What was it like meeting Emilia Clarke for the first time, and working alongside her?
Mac: Mind-blowing! I kept trying to act cool, you know? (laughs) I already have a bit of a stutter and I was so nervous, it just got even worse! But Emilia is such a lovely girl; she kept asking me questions about myself and my work. She’s my idol. I was worried that it would be awkward and everyone would be staring at me, but it wasn’t at all. We just kept laughing, and she was really cool about everything. We both had a hard time with the heat and mainly hung out in the shade, trying to stay pale.
Paste: And what’s your time on the set of Game of Thrones been like?
Mac: It was amazing! The people on set—the extras, doubles and the cast—they were all great people. It was so surreal. Working in the heat was pretty difficult at times. We were mainly filming in the bullring, trapped in blazing heat. There was no wind, no breeze. Some of the extras were getting really ill because of it. But it was still one of the best experiences of my life.
Paste: I know that you’re a model, a dancer, an actress and also a singer. Which would you say comes most natural to you?
Mac: Acting. It might sound vain, but I’m a natural actress, have been since I was very young. But I love everything I do. I’ve always liked singing, but up until recently it was just for fun. I just recorded a cover of Ella Henderson’s “Yours” and have had a great response. Tomorrow I am going to record “Done & Finished,” which was written for me by Roger Cook.
Paste: You’re also the co-founder and owner of the Mac Model & Casting Agency in Marbella’s Puerto Banus. Tell us more about it!
Mac: I’ve been working in this industry so long, I decided to put all the contacts I had made with models, photographers and other professionals together to set up my own agency. We work with actors, models and dancers from all backgrounds. We just wrapped up a video shoot for Mr Probz and Armin Van Buuren in Malaga. We also run our own modeling academy where we teach aspiring models about the industry, make-up and runway shows. It’s very rewarding being able to put what I’ve learned to good use.
Paste: What else can we expect from you in future?
Mac: I finished filming VivaGirls: Almost Famous for the Discovery Channel at the end of last year. It’s a reality show following several dancers competing to become the next real VivaGirl. It’s focused on different aspects of performing—aerial acrobatics, pyro performances, etc. It was filmed at the famous Pacha club in Mallorca. It will be aired all across the globe; the first release date is in India, on April 26th!
Paste: Thanks for your time Rosie. We look forward to seeing more of you!
Mac: Thank you.