Maisie Williams Gets Real About the Emotional Toll of Playing Arya Stark
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Maisie Williams is opening up about what it was really like playing Arya Stark on “Game of Thrones,” including the times when she resented the character. Williams discussed her experiences in an interview with British GQ.
The actor was cast as Arya a few months after turning 12, and she said the show did a good job of shielding its younger cast from the fame that found them. She didn’t even walk a red carpet at a series premiere until season three.
But Williams told the mag that she remembers when she was first handed a bra when getting into her “Game of Thrones” costume and that it marked the moment when she started to separate from the tomboyish, young girl everyone wanted her to be because of the character. “I think that when I started becoming a woman, I resented Arya because I couldn’t express who I was becoming,” Williams said. “And then I also resented my body, because it wasn’t aligned with the piece of me that the world celebrated.”
Williams also admitted that she doesn’t miss doing “Game of Thrones.” She explained, “I don’t think it’s healthy [to miss it], because I loved it. I look at it so fondly, and I look at it with such pride. But why would I want to make myself feel sad about the greatest thing that ever happened to me? I don’t want to associate that with feelings of pain.”
Williams did say she would consider being Arya in a new “Game of Thrones” show if it was “the right time and the right people.” She said that after “Game of Thrones” ended in 2019, she purposefully played with her self-image – including dyeing her hair and her eyebrows – to keep herself from being typecast.
The actor will appear in the new miniseries “Pistol” on Disney+ next month. The series follows the rise of the Sex Pistols in the 1970s, and Williams will portray punk icon Pamela Rooke.