Actress Maisie Williams has been garnering recognition and critical acclaim for her role of Arya Stark on HBO’s hit fantasy show Game of Thrones, but despite being incredibly busy with the show for a large part of the year, she has also found time to take on roles in a few small films, including Heatstroke, which was just released on VOD and in limited theaters on July 4th.
The film follows a research scientist, Paul (Stephen Dorff), his girlfriend Tally (Svetlana Metkina), and his daughter Jo (Maisie Williams), as they travel to Africa to study hyenas. While there, they run into a group of poachers, which puts all three of them in danger, turning their trip into a desperate attempt at survival in a harsh environment.
To promote Heatstroke‘s release, I sat down with Maisie for an exclusive interview in which we discuss the behind the scenes workings of the film and her character, as well as her work on Game of Thrones.
Check it out below, and enjoy!
WGTC: Looking at your career as it is right now, we see that you’ve been on a big, successful TV show for four years, and you also have several movies under your belt at this point. Something I’ve always wondered about, particularly when it comes to something as uniquely epic as Game of Thrones, is how does that differ in terms of the workload and the scheduling when compared to something more relatively normal like Heatstroke?
Maisie Williams: They’re completely different experiences. The biggest change about it is the crew. It’s such a more intimate crew on a movie. It’s also the same. You still get up with your schedule and do the scene it says on the day. It’s laid out pretty similarly.
WGTC: What I’ve always found particularly interesting about Game of Thrones is that you can basically take anyone’s story and mash their scenes together to make a movie. For season four, we could of had something like “The Adventures of Arya and the Hound.” So it’s treated basically the same, as in they gave Rory and you your own crew and sent you off to Ireland to do your thing?
Maisie Williams: Yeah, I guess so. You’re still trying to fit into the bigger picture, into the bigger schedule of the whole series. It does feel like you’re on your own little planet for six months though.
WGTC: So compared to Heatstroke, it’s pretty similar?
Maisie Williams: It still very much feels like you’re part of… I mean, although you’re obviously only shooting your own bit, you still feel like you’re part of a massive, a much bigger thing. I wouldn’t say it feels like we’re doing just one feature for two characters. Because there are two units running beside each other that sometimes cross over, it still feel like you’re part of something massive on Game of Thrones. It doesn’t feel like you’re just doing your little piece and then leaving. There’s kind of a feel about it, like everyone’s still working for this much bigger thing.