Be nice, folks.

Leave Ed alone.

Ed Sheeran’s cameo appearance on the season 7 premiere of Game of Thrones has made plenty of noise — for the good and bad. However, the show director isn’t keen with any negativity and has come to the singer’s defense after he was met with backlash for the Sunday (July 16) episode.

“I think Ed did a lovely job — he’s a lovely actor and a lovely person,” episode director Jeremy Podeswa told Newsweek. “He was appropriate for the part because he needed to sing. If people didn’t know who Ed was, they wouldn’t have thought about it twice. The hoo-ha seems to be from the things that are outside of the world of the show. In the world of the show he did a lovely job, and he looks like he belongs in the world.”

Less than 24 hours after the episode aired, Sheeran deleted his Twitter account with no explanation. Coincidence? Probably not. In the past, the British chart-topper has admitted that he doesn’t entirely dive into the social media realm because of the comments. At time of press, he had returned to Twitter.

Podeswa continued his defense for Sheeran, confessing that he thinks a lot of the viewers put “so much of his [superstar] presence into the thing which is far beyond what anybody was thinking going into it.”

“He is known to the producers of the show and some of the cast, and he’s a gigantic fan of the show. As everybody knows, the show really eschews stunt casting—it’s never, ever done that,” he continued. “I was quite surprised about the reaction actually because I know he’s very well known and a successful singer but you’re in the bubble of the show—the cast are well known too, everybody is really well known…none of them can walk down the street without being followed. You don’t think about that very much in this context.”

Why do you think Ed received so much backlash for his Game of Thrones cameo? Let us know in Exhale.

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