nlike many 16-year-olds, Maisie Williams has seen her father beheaded, been imprisoned twice, lived part of her life as a boy and, oh yeah, there was the one time she killed that dude in the woods. An integral part of George RR Martin's epic A Song of Ice and Fire series, Williams' Arya Stark has the distinction of being the only character to have at least one POV chapter in each of the five existing books. Continuing the Game of Thrones marathon at Martin's Jean Cocteau Cinema— that last week hosted a Skype-in with show producers Dan Weiss and David Benioff—Williams is set to make a special, live appearance at the Jan. 20 screenings.
In a candid chat with SFR, bubbly Williams talks twit-posals, Joffrey and GoT: The Musical?
SFR: What's the craziest fan interaction you've encountered?
I’ve heard some other cast members have encountered crazy things, but being in the UK for most of the time, I don’t meet too many, like, hardcore fans and I’ve never had anything too weird. The weirdest stuff is usually on Twitter—like, strangers asking you to marry them—I haven’t had anything too strange actually in the flesh, so I’ve been one of the lucky ones. I guess it’s easier for people to say stuff on the Internet, because it’s like you’re talking to a screen rather than an actual person.
What are you looking forward to the most during your visit to Santa Fe?
I'm looking forward to George taking us out to loads of cool restaurants because he's got a habit of picking some amazing places to eat.
What's your relationship with George RR Martin like?
I met George for the first time back home when we were shooting the pilot episode, before anything had ever been commissioned. He's such a mastermind; it's kind of crazy how he has all this stuff in his head. I take my hat off to him because I get confused and I have a script by my side and I'm being helped through the story by someone else. To actually make this up, I think that's just phenomenal. He's a really lovely guy and I don't see him as often as I would like to, but when I do see him and we happen to catch up, he never tells me anything about Arya's upcoming storyline—which is kind of annoying—I'll just have to wait and see it alongside the rest of the world, I guess.
Is it fair to say you're over the Red Wedding blues by now?
Yeah. People who had read the books, I guess, knew it was happening a long time before, but when it actually happened, we had to stick to it. It's tough for a popular TV series to kill off its main characters, that's kind of risky, but I'm cool with it. It is sad that I don't get to see Michelle [Fairley] or Richard [Madden] anymore, but it's great for the story, I think, because it keeps people interested and it takes you away from that cliché of the good guy always winning. Also, just because there are books written, it doesn't always mean that we're gonna stick to that in the series. It is an adaptation, so really, no one is safe.
Unlike some of your co-stars, you've chosen not to read the books before filming, correct?
I haven’t read the books, but I know roughly what happens up to book four. I’m not sure what happens in book five, and obviously, the end no one knows.
What arc in your character's storyline are you most shocked by?
How ruthless she's become. She's always been a fan favorite because she's kind of funky and she says what she thinks and feels and stands up to some pretty evil characters—I think that's kind of sweet. And then you get to see this other side to her, where she becomes more brutal and a lot more ruthless—I think it's a little risqué because this lovable character that you used to know is now taken away and she's not quite as appealing anymore, maybe. She's a little bit more…scary.
Ooh, I think escaping Harrenhal was a big thing for Arya. She'd gotten away from King's Landing, but she couldn't have done that without Yoren's help and, I think when she got away from Harrenhal she managed to do it not on her own, but she managed to work her way around people and reason with people and argue with people. When she finally got free from there, she thought that maybe she could be on her own and do what she wants to do. That was a big step and a proud moment.
Care to advance what the OMG moment of season four is?
I can't tell you, can I? [Laughs dubiously]. The thing about seasons one through three is that we've always had a big finale. Now, we're going to have more things throughout rather than just at the end. More, kind of, iconic bits, so it's not just a big finale this time. So yeah, there's not one specific point. There's quite a few and I hope people enjoy it.
Is Braavos a good place to summer?
That would be fantastic! I keep asking David and Dan what's gonna happen on that bit or if they're gonna change it, but they're keeping very tight-lipped about it. I could use a little sun, really. That's all I want.
Have you started the High Valyrian lessons yet?
I haven't, no. I'm kind of nervous about all of that. I keep hearing that's a thing that could happen, but who knows what's gonna happen.
If The Hound were to create an OkCupid profile, how would it read?
"As long as you don't talk to me before breakfast, I'm a sweet guy."
What's the one thing people would be surprised to learn about Jack Gleeson, aka King Joffrey, the most?
That he's just the most funny, sweet guy of the cast, I'd say. I think people expect him to be evilin real life or whatever and he doesn't do any of the fan things, because of the kind of reception he always gets. People are always hating on him and stuff but he's the sweetest guy ever. I take my hat off to him; he's doing a fantastic job. But it is sad, the rest that comes with it.
You've showcased your mad dance skills on Vine. Any chance of a musical episode of Game of Thrones?
That'd be great. It'll actually come at the end, that's the big finale—all of us dancing and singing.
We can bring Drogo and Ned back and everyone who's died along the way and we can have us all a party.
And Hodor can have a sweet solo.
That would be perfect!
Complete this sentence: Winter is __________ .
Um, let me think. Nearly here.
GAME OF THRONES
W/SPECIAL APPEARANCE BY MAISIE WILLIAMS
7 pm Monday, Jan. 20. Free.
Jean Cocteau Cinema, 418 Montezuma Ave.,
Check out Williams' swordsmanship below: