Game of Thrones star Maisie Williams has undergone a significant transformation for her new TV role, shedding 26lbs. The actress, known for her role as Arya Stark, will be playing Catherine Dior, the younger sister of fashion mogul Christian Dior, in the upcoming series The New Look.
However, the weight loss journey was not an easy one for Williams, causing her to experience nightmares and sleep paralysis. In an interview with Harper's Bazaar, she revealed that medical professionals supervised her weight loss, which involved eating very little.
Williams also incorporated meditation, burning candles, and incense into her routine. She had to wake up at 4am to start sweating and was only allowed a small amount of smoked salmon and wine in the evening. To reduce fluid retention, she took a hot bath with salts before sleeping for a few hours.
Throughout the process, Williams felt restricted and was only allowed a handful of nuts upon waking.
The actress has had to undergo physical transformations for previous roles, including her character in Game of Thrones, which required her to develop different muscles. However, playing Catherine in her latest role has had a more profound impact on her lifestyle, affecting her eating habits, exercise routine, sleep patterns, and even her thoughts.
During her time on Game of Thrones, the actress had to conceal her changing body as she entered adulthood. She explained to Vogue that around the second or third season, her body started to mature, and she had to sport short hair. The production team would also cover her in dirt and use makeup to make her nose appear broader, giving her a more masculine appearance.
"They also used to place a strap across my chest to flatten any growth that had started, and it felt terrible for six months of the year. I even felt ashamed for a while," Maisie shared.
However, her new role takes things to another level. Maisie revealed that she would wake up feeling like a "marble inside a bottle," experiencing nightmares related to her character. Catherine, her character, was part of the French resistance during World War II, and those experiences haunted her dreams. Maisie explained, "I would often have dreams of feeling restricted, almost like sleep paralysis, where I would be trapped and attacked. I would also have horrible visions of men in uniform."
Filming every day served as a constant reminder that they were portraying a story about the atrocities humans are capable of inflicting on one another. However, it also showcased the magic, hope, and love that can exist amidst such darkness. This story will now be brought to life in a 10-episode series that will air on AppleTV+.
Maisie will be starring alongside Ben Mendelsohn, Glenn Close, and Juliette Binoche in the miniseries, which is based on the book Miss Dior: A Story of Courage and Couture.
The series delves into the story of Catherine, who was arrested and tortured by the Gestapo in 1944. After enduring nearly a year in a concentration camp in Germany, she was finally released in 1945.
During her time in captivity, Catherine was forced to work at various German camps and factories. However, her bravery did not go unnoticed, and she was eventually honored with several medals. In a remarkable turn of events, the famous Miss Dior perfume was even named after her.
Catherine continued to live a fulfilling life until June 2008, and she played a significant role in the opening of the Christian Dior museum in Granville, Normandy.