The Untold Truth Of Sophie Turner

Sophie Turner was barely a teen when we first met her on Game of Thrones. The British beauty was introduced to the world as Sansa Stark on the HBO medieval fantasy drama and would grow up before our eyes, transforming from an unknown actress to one of the stars of a television juggernaut.

Despite having spent her teen years in the public eye, Turner has managed to avoid the scandals that have plagued way too many child actors. And she's also parlayed her Game of Thrones popularity into a starring role in the X-Men film franchise, likely ensuring that we'll be hearing from her for years to come. It also doesn't hurt that she's one half of a celebrity couple with one third of the Jonas Brothers, Joe Jonas, whom she's been engaged to since 2017. 

Want to know more about the young actress? Here's the untold truth of Sophie Turner.

Her twin died before birth

There's a void in Turner's life that may never go away. Her twin sister didn't survive the pregnancy, which pains Turner to this day. She explained to You (via, "My mum had a miscarriage — my twin died and I lived." Regarding her mother's miscarriage, Turner noted that it "definitely affected [her] in terms of [she] always felt as though... something was missing." She added, "I have two older brothers who are close in age and I always felt as though I needed someone or should have had someone there."

The pain cuts so deep that Turner purposely draws upon it for her most heart-wrenching acting scenes. "I guess there's a sense of loss there that I have used to conjure emotions onscreen," she said, giving her Game of Thrones character's reaction to her father, Ned Stark, dying as an example. Not coincidentally, Turner starred in the film Another Me, which involves a twin thought to be lost during a miscarriage. She told she was drawn to the film because she's fascinated with "the way that twins act and react with each other."

A promising dancer

Acting wasn't Turner's only love as a child. She was a talented ballet dancer and was accepted to the Royal Ballet School in London when she was 11 years old, according to The Telegraph. So why did she leave behind the tutu life? According to her March 2019 interview with Harper's Bazaar, she quit dancing because she didn't want to give up her acting class on weekends: "I think it was a good decision in the end." Yeah, you could say that.

And besides, Turner feels she wasn't meant to be a professional dancer. "I'm a bit too tall and I like pasta too much," she told Harper's Bazaar, "so I am not sure I would have gone all the way to prima ballerina." But that hasn't stopped her from reuniting with her past love. With Game of Thrones production finished, she's been focusing on her hobbies, including ballet, again. Maybe she'll become a prima ballerina yet.

She didn't try too hard at her GOT audition

The audition that changed Sophie Turner's life forever nearly didn't happen. When she was 12 years old, Turner forgot about her audition with Game of Thrones casting directors, who were visiting schools all across England to fill the roles of Sansa and Arya Stark, until her high school drama teacher — whose idea it was for Turner to try out for the show — spotted her in the school cafeteria and reminded her she was supposed to be at her audition (via Marie Claire). Whoops.

Ironically, Turner told The Telegraph she didn't really give 100 percent during the audition with the casting directors, unlike her previous unsuccessful acting auditions. "This was the first audition that I didn't really try very hard for," the actress said. She was asked to audition four more times (including a chemistry read with her future co-star and best friend Maisie Williams) and eventually landed the role of Sansa. And the rest is Westeros history.

She cried because she thought GOT wouldn't get picked up

It's hard to believe now given the show's massive success, but there was a time when it appeared Game of Thrones might not take off. The pilot was subpar and apparently Sophie Turner and co-star Maisie Williams sensed it because they cried at the wrap party. Showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss told Rolling Stone via email in 2019, "We remember the both of them bawling and hugging each other because they loved each other so much after only a few short weeks, and were afraid they'd never see each other again, because the show wouldn't get picked up. It was a viable fear."

Benioff and Weiss weren't exactly confident with the pilot either, which is why they recast certain roles and reshot the majority of the episode. The show was later picked up and become a monster hit, allowing Turner and Williams to reunite and further strengthen their bond.

"But we're very grateful that it didn't work out that way," Benioff and Weiss said of the show's potential early ending, "and that [Turner and Williams] both got to spend all those years with each other, and with us." Us, too!

She and Maisie Williams got matching tattoos

Co-stars and BFFs Sophie Turner and Maisie Williams really are as tight as they seem in interviews and on social media, and the two friends have the ink to prove it. The pair got matching "07.08.09" tattoos on their arms during a day off from filming in Belfast, Northern Ireland. What does the tattoo mean? Turner told Elle"That's the date that both of us found out we'd got our roles in Game Of Thrones." As for the color of the ink, which is a not-so-obvious apricot, Turner told Marie Claire that was done to please her mom, but she added, "I'm going to get it darker."

That date tattoo not the only matching ink Turner and Williams have considered. Turner told E! (via Cosmopolitan) that she and Williams wanted to get matching wolf tattoos if they survived up until the end of Game of Thrones, but they didn't know if their characters would live until the end of the show. Turner noted, "Maisie and I were like 'Let's get this before anyone kills us.'" You can't really blame them for thinking that, considering the show's violent history.

She adopted her direwolf

Zunni — the Northern Inuit dog known as Lady on Game of Thrones — went from playing Sophie Turner's direwolf on the show to becoming her pet in real life. Once Lady met her untimely on-screen death at Cersei Lannister's request, it was time to find Zunni a new home. Turner had always wanted a dog and stepped in, telling the Coventry Telegraph (via Vulture) that she and her parents "kind of fell in love with my character's dire wolf, Lady, on set."

Hopefully Zunni was a better pet than she was a performer. Turner told Harper's Bazaar, "Zunni was a terrible actor, really bad on set," adding, "She wouldn't respond to any of my calls and everyone was ready to fire her, so we took her on when I was 14. She was about three feet tall and pretty big." Zuni lived until she was 11, spending most of her time with Turner's parents. RIP, Zunni.

She thought of Joffrey as Justin Bieber

There was a time when Turner was a Belieber. She had a whole wall in her bedroom dedicated to the pop star. This fandom eventually paid off in her scenes with Joffrey, whom her character fawns over despite him being a royal jerk. Turner revealed to Rolling Stone that the Game of Thrones showrunners "always told [her], 'Look at Joffrey as if he's Justin Bieber and imagine that life.'"

Why Bieber of all people? "[Sansa] is completely oblivious to who the royal family are," Turner explained. "It's like any Justin Bieber fan — they don't realize Justin has his darkness about him." Turner has since met Bieber, and, according to her appearance on The Late Late Show with James Corden, she very awkwardly greeted him during the interaction. It probably would have been even more awkward if Bieber was aware that she was using him as inspiration for her Joffrey scenes.

Her dad picked an awkward time to visit the set

The first time Turner's dad visited the Game of Thrones set to see his daughter in action was when he surprised her the day she was preparing to film an attempted rape scene. Talk about bad timing. Turner told The Telegraph, "It was horribly awkward," explaining, "My dad didn't know this scene was going on, he just thought he'd turn up. We were like, Oh, bad day, Dad." Producer Dan Weiss wasn't very comfortable either. He was awkwardly sitting between Turner's mom and dad going, "Oh my God," according to Turner's interview with Tatler (via The Telegraph).

Turner said her parents eventually got used to the show's notorious sex scenes. And it's a good thing too because there were a ton of them. "They knew it was a good-quality show," Turner told The Telegraph. "If it hadn't been I don't think they would have been happy." 

Wigging out

Turner isn't a real redhead. She just plays one on TV. Born blonde, Turner began dying her hair for the role of Sansa and would continue to do so for the majority of the show's run. It wasn't until season seven that she began wearing scarlet wigs instead. She told Elle, "I started wearing a wig in season seven because I had dyed my hair blonde and it wasn't the best experience, so we couldn't really dye my hair back red."

It's a good thing too. Turner is happier as a blonde. She said red is "a gorgeous color" but she feels "so comfortable being blonde and much more like a 'cool girl.'" But she didn't completely say goodbye to the red dye job once she went the wig route. Turner dyed it red again once her hair was healthy for her role as Jean Gray in the X-Men franchise.

Her Twitter spat with her ex was actually a joke

Things appeared to get awkward between exes Sophie Turner and The Vamps guitarist James McVey right before our very eyes in 2014. McVey tweeted a photo of himself and Turner with the caption, "Was this all an act? I know you're an actress but this isn't cool," to which Turner responded, "Please stop. You're freaking me out."

Many took this as a sign that the two had broken up, but McVey insisted in an interview with The Sun that it was all a joke and that they actually were still together at that point. "No-one really got it apart from us, and now, in hindsight, it looks like we had a really messy breakup," he said, "but when we did that, we actually carried on dating for, like, six weeks after that and it was fine."

McVey even wished Turner well in her engagement to Joe Jonas, insisting he's "really happy for them" and "looking forward to seeing some wedding pictures."

Social media love connection

How does a famous actress and a pop star meet in this day and age? In the case of Sophie Turner and Jonas Brothers singer Joe Jonas, the answer is social media. Turner told Harper's Bazaar, "We had a lot of mutual friends and they'd been trying to introduce us for a long time. We were following each other on Instagram and he direct-messaged me one fine day, out of the blue."

Jonas has a rabid following, which is why his fans have been known to be overprotective and jealous when it comes to his relationships. Turner said some of Jonas' fans don't think too highly of her, but that "it's better now." Of course, Turner has her own fan base, too. "The people who watch the show are quite protective of me because they've seen me grow up," she said. "They write to him and say 'If you do anything to her...if you break her heart...' It's sweet. I like it."

She's had relationships with women

Sophie Turner didn't envision herself getting married. She told Rolling Stone she was prepared to spend the rest of her life single, which, let's be honest, is an odd conclusion to come to when you're a young and attractive actress on a hit show. But then she met Joe Jonas on Instagram. And, well, when you know, you know. Turner said, "I feel like I've lived enough life to know. I've met enough guys to know — I've met enough girls to know." She stated, "Everyone experiments," noting, "It's part of growing up. I love a soul, not a gender."

If it were up to Turner, Sansa would have done some experimenting on the show as well. She told Entertainment Weekly, "I think she's going to have to swing the other way — because the men thing isn't working for her." Her ideal mate for Sansa? Turner shared, "Judging by Sansa's relationship with Margaery ... probably Margaery." Wouldn't that have been something?

She suffers from depression and anxiety

Like so many, Turner has struggled with anxiety and depression. And she still does. But she has seen substantial improvement thanks to therapy and medication. "The fact that I spoke to someone changed my life," she told Rolling Stone. Many people close to her in the UK are also struggling with their mental health but don't have access to the same resources she does, which is why she said she's flown them out to the United States.

Turner told Harper's Bazaar, "In the US, they are more willing to talk about their emotions. Or at least, more willing to talk about mental health. In the UK, we have this mentality of 'chin up, get on with it, you'll be fine.'" Turner doesn't just think it's a UK issue but also a generational one. She told Rolling Stone, "My mom still asks me, 'Why do you need a therapist?'" The good news is people like Turner are moving the conversation in the right direction.

She was a fast food junkie

You wouldn't know it from looking at her, but Turner has a thing for fast food — American fast food, that is. Her favorites? She told InStyle in 2016, "I spent a month working in Atlanta, and they have Chick-fil-A restaurants on every corner. It's so good! I crave it. I also love Wendy's Frosty milkshakes. And then there's In-N-Out Burger in L.A. I mean, the best."

Her tune seemed to change in an interview with Elle the following year. She admitted her diet was "horrendous" but has improved for the better since she started working on X-Men. "Now I pretty much eat healthily just because I don't really have a tolerance for unhealthy food anymore — I feel so really groggy after I eat it," she said. "And I know a lot about food now, what's good for you, what's not."

She said she occasionally gives in to a cheat meal now and then, but not many. And when she does, it's not fast food that she wants. It's sausages. "Love love love sausage!" she told Elle. "Tell the world!"

She has a fear of... drains?

It's not uncommon for people to walk around drains on the street rather than walk on them. Some probably worry that the drains will collapse under the pressure, causing them to fall into whatever dark and dingy area lies underneath. Is it likely? Of course not. But that hasn't kept some, including Sophie Turner, from avoiding them. She went as far as to label it a "phobia" in an interview with InStyle.

Turner said walking over drains "freaks [her] out," and she said, "I get so nervous whenever I see one." Because walking over them is sometimes unavoidable, Turner has learned an unconventional trick when forced to face her fears. She told InStyle, "Someone once told me to say the word 'onions' when I walk over one and it will reverse the curse. So now I say it every time. I guess it's a superstition thing, but it helps." Whatever works!