From Westcliff to a land of dragons and warriors

Southend Standard: Darren Kent with a picture of him in costume on set Darren Kent with a picture of him in costume on set

TWO actors are flying the flag for south Essex on the set of a hit TV drama.

Darren Kent, 29, and Nathalie Emmanuel, 24, both from Westcliff, are in the new series of Sky One’s hit series Game of Thrones.

While Darren, of Prittlewell Chase, Westcliff, has only recently landed a role in the show, Nathalie is a regular performer and plays the part of Missandei.

The pair only realised there connections when they bumped into each other on a flight from Southend Airport to Belfast, where part of the series is filmed.

Darren said: “I was on the plane from Southend Airport to Belfast and I saw a girl reading through a Game of Thrones script, like I was, only a few seats away from me, and we got talking.

“It’s a small world. She is currently filming in Los Angeles with Vin Diesel for the new Fast and the Furious film so she’d only been in town for a couple of days before flying to Belfast and then flying back.”

Game of Thrones is an American fantasy drama series made by acclaimed broadcaster HBO. It has been described as being like The Sopranos, but set in Middle Earth - where the Lord of the Rings trilogy is based.

It has links to south Essex as legendary Dr Feelgood guitarist Wilko Johnson made his acting debut in the show, playing the part of Ilyn Payne.

Darren, who has appeared in several US productions, said: “My character is in a very important episode in the series – the dragons are completely out of control and it comes to a head in that episode.

“It’s not a massive role, but it is a very important one.

“It was really harrowing. I didn’t stop crying for 25 minutes after we’d finished filming, I think most of the crew was crying too.”

Darren is also currently directing and starring in a film called Abusing Protocol, set much closer to home, about Essex gangsters.

Game of Thrones series 4 will be on TV next year.

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