“I’ve kind of been a part of that whole situation for a very long time, so we’ve had so many scares and trying to find the right way to come out and help,” he told ET Online on Wednesday. “I just think it’s beautiful that … she’s so brave in helping the world and trying to raise awareness.”
The actor, who played Khal Drogo in “Game of Thrones” Season 1 opposite Clarke’s Khaleesi/Daenerys Targaryen, appeared at the show’s Season 8 premiere in New York and got candid about what it was like to watch his former on-screen wife go through her ordeals.
Last month, Clarke penned a New Yorker essay detailing the two nearly fatal aneurysms she suffered in the early years of the HBO fantasy series.
After filming the first season, the then-24-year-old actress suffered “a life-threatening type of stroke” in the locker room of a London gym. She was taken to a local hospital for brain surgery and was diagnosed with a subarachnoid hemorrhage, a stroke that only one-third of people fully recover from.
The stroke left Clarke struggling to communicate, but she recovered and was back at work a week later.
She suffered a second aneurysm in 2013 after completing the show’s third season, after which a doctor noticed in a routine scan that a growth in her brain that had “doubled in size,” she wrote. After spending a month in a hospital experiencing “terrible anxiety, panic attacks” and being “convinced that I wasn’t going to live,” she has “healed beyond my most unreasonable hopes.”
Clarke has created a charity organization, Same You, that provides treatment for patients recovering from brain injuries and stroke.
Of her trials and triumph, Momoa told ET that he was “very sad, because we almost lost her the first time” and that he loves Clarke “to bits.”
“And she’s here and she’s going to do great things with it and teach the world,” he said.