Emilia Clarke is part of a political campaign to increase perceptions of safety in the Russian city of Yekaterinburg, unbeknownst to the famous Game of Thrones actress and to great disgust for fans of the hit series. Yakov Silin, who is running for mayor of Yekaterinburg, used the image of the Mother of Dragons, which is one of the many titles for her character in the popular television show.
On the politician’s Facebook page he labeled the photo as belonging to a twenty-four-year-old adult woman with the name of Anya and even attached a quote supposedly belonging to the young hypothetical female resident that read, “I suddenly noticed that I haven’t been afraid to take walks around Yekaterinburg at night the last couple of years. It’s so wonderful: few people around, the street lamps alight, the fresh air. It’s incredibly beautiful, especially after the rain.”
Outrage over the inaccuracy of the image led to a repulsed outpouring from a strong following of the show, prompting the following statement from Yakov Silin’s campaign team, “We assure you that Daenerys Targaryen is just a beautiful woman here. We don’t aspire to her support, but we wouldn’t be ashamed to show her around Yekaterinburg.”
When the overall purpose is for a good cause, is there justification for using celebrity photos without forthright, open consent from the actual party in question? The photo was included in a campaign to promote young girls feeling comfortable in the city during the evening hours to carry on with social agendas without fear of rape or other brutal criminal activities. This sounds like a positive purpose, right? However, posting without making Emilia Clarke aware, not-so-positive. While Emilia Clarke hasn’t released a statement indicating her feelings about the photograph, fans have taken up the torch to voice their concerns about using the image.