She stars in HBO's Game of Thrones as Catelyn Stark. She replaced Jennifer Ehle, who had departed the project following amicable discussions with HBO. Ehle's departure and Fairley's casting were announced simultaneously on 19 March 2010. She was cast for the show after being seen as "Lady Macbeth" in a play opposite Ewan Mcgregor. She was part of the initial starring cast and remains a member of the starring cast for the second and third seasons.