Maisie Williams, 22, spoke out about the pressure she has faced in the spotlight following her breakout role in Game of Thrones as Arya Stark. The actress addressed the issue during an appearance on Fearne Cotton’s Happy Place podcast in London, for the DICE Podcast Live event. Getting candid with an audience of 200 fans, she divulged: “I’ve definitely said things I regret and have done things I regret, and I haven’t been the best role model at certain times.” Maisie then explained how her opinions on her own celebrity role models changed when she began spotting them at awards shows.
She continued: “When I started going to award shows where you see stars wall to wall, it’s a surreal experience.
“But when you see them having a cigarette or b****ing about someone you’re like, ‘oh you’re not how I thought you were.’”
However, in spite of this revelation, the star was adamant that role models should stay true to themselves, adding: “There’s no worse role model than not being genuine. Just do you and that’s what girls should look up to.
“It takes the pressure off I think. That makes it sound like there wasn’t a whole journey to get there – but for a long time I did play a character.”
Maisie explained she initially tried to maintain a “squeaky clean” act in order to be viewed as a role model for her fans.
She recalled: “I was so set on trying to look grown up and how ‘I wasn’t going to ruin my life,’
“I guess it did take a lot of trying to be squeaky clean.”
The British star then bravely went on to speak about a time last year where her perspectives changed, as she admitted: “Last year, in my own personal life, I went though a lot of revelations where I wasn’t happy pretending everything is fine.
“But after that I think I’ve tried to be a lot more genuine. You just drop it all and that’s when you can have a lot more fun.”
Although Maisie declared she now feels more comfortable in the public eye, she still has plenty of regrets that she dwells on late at night.
The Game of Thrones favourite added: “I’m not a model human, And I still lie in bed at 11 at night telling myself all the things I hate about myself.”
After acknowledging her insecurities, Maisie decided to share some encouraging words of wisdom with Fearne, concluding: “Trying to be as honest with yourself as you are with other people, that’s so important.”
Elsewhere, the actress revealed she finds people quoting her lines from Game of Thrones back to her “embarrassing.”
In an interview with Vogue, Maisie was asked which classic lines from the HBO drama people say to her.
She spilled: “Either ’winter is coming’ or ‘stick him with the pointy end’.
“Sometimes people also ask me, ‘What’s your name?’ and when I say Maisie Williams, they’re like, ‘No! A girl has no name’.
Maisie joked: “It’s embarrassing.”
Game of Thrones season eight, episode three airs Sunday on HBO and is simulcast to Sky Atlantic at 2am on Monday morning.