Last season on Game of Thrones, the writers decided to pair two characters together for several scenes that were not in George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire novels: A captive young Arya Stark (Maisie Williams) working as a servant for the fearsome Lannister patriarch Tywin (Charles Dance), who doesn’t realize her true royal identity. The move could have backfired. They were lengthy chatty two-characters-in-a-room scenes between a then-14 year-old actress with no prior acting experience before Thrones and a 65-year-old British stage and screen veteran. Instead, they were among fans’ favorite moments of the season, with Williams/Arya holding her own against Dance/Tywin.
“He introduced himself and said, ‘Hello, I’m Charlie,’ and I’m all, ‘No you’re not!’” Williams recalls, having balked at the idea of addressing the actor by his first name. “He commands such respect when he walks in a room. But I could only call him Charlie.”
Fan response to the scenes, Williams says, took her by surprise. “I didn’t really go into scenes thinking they were going to be as popular as they were, but they were great fun,” she says while hanging out with Sophie Turner (Sansa) at the show’s production hotel in Belfast last September. “The books are fantastic but sometimes people are a little too protective of the story lines.”
Williams has been particularly effective at giving a devastating dead stare that seems beyond her years. “A lot of actors and actresses pull from past experiences,” she says. “I’m really good at convincing myself somebody’s killed my dad and sometimes I get myself really annoyed. You know sometimes when you’re in a really bad mood and you’re not sure why? That’s how I get sometimes. That’s the great fun about acting you can pretend to be somebody else all day.” READ FULL STORY