Starting out on what turns into a be a ten-year worldwide TV phenomenon when you’re only 12 years old is enough to potentially turn any child actor into a cautionary tale. But former Arya Stark, current (if long-delayed) mutant werewolf, and seemingly well-adjusted 23-year-old Maisie Williams seemed to have things happily together on Wednesday’s Tonight Show. Like the rest of us, she’s spending her socially distanced pandemic time playing all the video games (having had enough bloody mayhem, seemingly, Williams told Jimmy Fallon she’s all about Animal Crossing, with a little Conduct Together thrown in), ruling over her social media kingdom, and doing remote publicity for movies she shot in the before-time. Including one particular movie shot in the before-before-time, as Williams explained that she, too, can’t wait to actually see The New Mutants.
Referring to the long, convoluted, and 2017-shot Marvel movie about the comics team of minor-league, teenage potential X-Men, Williams waved off any suggestion that reshoots, retooling, re-jiggering, or otherwise quality-related issues were what was keeping this last pre-Disney-takeover mutant movie from theaters. She assured Fallon that The New Mutants tickets have already been printed and sold for the supposedly set-in-stone August 28 release date, when—because of the labyrinthine legal haggling among Disney, Fox, Marvel, and essentially every lawyer in the land—The New Mutants will get its pandemic-be-damned theatrical release. Williams, describing the tale of a handful of super-powered teens struggling to understand their changing bodies (in Williams’ case, changing right into a werewolf) as being like “Stephen King meets John Hughes.” So look for the horror-tinged Marvel movie (but not MCU, as per the most recent corporate announcement) to be like The Breakfast Club if Molly Ringwald was a literal demon-spawn, or Firestarter, but with more casual ethnic stereotyping.
And while Williams is looking forward to seeing her Rahne Sinclair/Wolfsbane belatedly wolf out while struggling with her strict Catholic faith and perhaps falling in love with fellow mutant teen Danielle Moonstar/Mirage, the actress (also starring in the upcoming horror flick The Owners) said that she’s happy to let her career-making role as Arya Stark recede into the past. Granted, not for the same reasons viewers of the perhaps too long-running fantasy epic might be (Him?), but, still, at least she won’t have to worry about being perpetually pestered by people on the street for spoilers. (She and Fallon reminisced about that April Fools’ prank Williams’ stellar acting helped pull off on The Tonight Show’s audience before the last season’s premiere.) “It was a a beautiful end to a decade of my life,” said Williams affectionately, noting the charge she got when first reading the breakdown of “The Long Night” and excitedly puzzling out the abbreviated initials of the character her Arya would be stabbing to death. And who wouldn’t miss that?