Now that she’s answered
Game of Thrones
fans’ prayers and
resurrected Jon Snow
, it’s time to get to know the woman behind mysterious Melisandre better.
Here are five things you need to know about Dutch actress
Carice van Houten
1. She speaks four languages
In addition to her native Dutch and English, Van Houten is fluent in German and speaks “a little French.” So if we’re being technical, she speaks three and a half languages, which certainly helps with mastering different accents for different characters. “If you have an ear for it, it’s not that bad,” Van Houten tells PEOPLE.
2. She caught the acting bug from Annie
Van Houten knew she wanted to be a performer from a very young age. “I wanted to be an astronaut for one day, but that was it,” she recalls. “When I saw the film
that’s when I really wanted to sing and dance. Be an orphan. But also of course, the promising world of Daddy Warbucks, screwed my idea of men a little bit. But that’s where it started, I think.”
Kgc-136-Jr / Star Max / Newscom / Zuma
3. She recorded a pop album
“I have only one album which is called,
See You on the Ice
which a lot of people think is a reference to the show,” says Van Houten. ” ‘Of course she’s a woman going to the north and ice, wow, smart title.’ It had nothing to do with it. Sometimes people discover it all of the sudden and come back to me about it. I really enjoy when people respond to my music, even more than maybe my acting sometimes. It’s very personal and it comes from me. There’s nothing that makes me happier than being in the studio.”
For more from Carice Van Houten, pick up the new issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands now4. She is expecting her first child with actor Guy Pierce
The couple announced their
happy news in March
and have maintained a
healthy sense of humor
about the onslaught of “shadow baby” jokes, including
– aka a nod to Melisandre’s shocking “birth” on
in Season 2.
5. She is not at all like her character on the show
Van Houten is used to
fans reacting to her in peculiar ways. “It’s either ‘I’m scared of you!’ or ‘You’re pretty in real life – you look really young,'” she says of her most frequent fan encounters. “I could not be more different from my character. I look so stern on the show that sometimes when I have meetings people expect this very strong woman to walk in. When they see this clumsy, small Dutch weirdo, they’re always very surprised. It’s funny.”
Game of Thrones
airs Sundays (9 p.m. ET) on HBO.