Maisie Williams explains why she ‘resented’ playing Arya Stark when she hit puberty
14 April 2022, 12:15 | Updated: 14 April 2022, 14:13
"I think that when I started becoming a woman, I resented Arya because I couldn’t express who I was becoming."
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Everyone's got differing opinions about Game of Thrones, but one thing we can all agree on? Arya Stark was truly one of the best characters on the show, and will go down in history as one of the best TV characters of all time.
And part of that is all down to Maisie Williams and her unforgettable performance.
Maisie was cast as Arya just a few months after her 12th birthday back in 2009, and spent the entirety of her teenage years playing the beloved character. When the show finally ended in 2019, Maisie was 22.
In a new profile with British GQ, Maisie has now shared her thoughts on the experience, and has opened up about feeling like she wasn't able to express who she was becoming personally because of how the world celebrated her character.
While Maisie loved being on the show, she told the publication how she felt portraying 'tomboy-ish' Arya during the time she was going through puberty herself.
"I think that when I started becoming a woman, I resented Arya because I couldn’t express who I was becoming," she says, with the profile noting that Maisie recalls the day she was first handed a bra in the Game of Thrones costume trailer. "And then I also resented my body, because it wasn’t aligned with the piece of me that the world celebrated."
When asked what parts of the show she misses, Maisie said: "Can I say none of it?"
Explaining her honest answer, Maisie elaborated: "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."
Discussing her post-Game of Thrones choices – both professionally and personally – Maisie added: "I was rejecting a lot of the pieces of me and my image that I’d been so well known for. It was more that I needed to express myself."
"I think that sometimes other people need a helping hand to see that you’re a different person," she said, adding, "and I don’t resent that."
In the profile, Maisie also addresses whether she'd portray Arya on-screen again.
"I’m not saying it would never happen, but I’m also not saying it in this interview so that everyone goes… ‘The spin-off! It’s coming!’ Because it’s not," Maisie stresses. "It has to be the right time and the right people. It has to be right in the context of all the other spin-offs and the universe of Game of Thrones."
"It has to be the right time for me."