News · TV

Maisie Williams is Beefing Up Her Animation Resume

The ‘Game of Thrones’ actress joins Michael B. Jordan for Rooster Teeth’s ‘gen:LOCK’ series.
By  · Published on September 17th, 2018

Without a doubt, Game of Thrones has relentlessly taken the world by storm since 2011. Prestige television had certainly been a thing for many years prior to HBO’s adaptations of George R. R. Martin’s acclaimed book series “A Song of Ice and Fire.”

However, the fever pitch grip that the gnarly adventures of Westeros has over the general public only continues to intensify over the years, even as the show veers further off into unknown territory of original material without the guidance of Martin’s novels.

That much is evident in the whopping 22 Emmy Award nominations that Game of Thrones has garnered for Season 7 alone, following years of leading the accolades game, anyway. Yet, the end is nigh. The show is about to wrap up at the end of 2019.

By that same token, Game of Thrones‘ stellar cast — a group of phenomenal talent that has worked together like a well-oiled machine — will definitively scatter. Luckily for us, our faves won’t be going very far. More often than not, they’ve got fascinating projects in the works. Take Arya Stark herself — Maisie Williams — for instance.

Deadline reports that Williams will join Rooster Teeth’s gen:LOCK, which already sports a hefty list of names on its roster, including Michael B. Jordan (Black Panther), Dakota Fanning (The Alienist), Koichi Yamadera (Cowboy Bebop), and David Tennant (Marvel’s Jessica Jones). Other members of the cast include anime veteran Monica Rial (Dragon Ball Z Kai), and Rooster Teeth mainstays like Lindsay Jones (RWBY) and Gray Haddock (Red vs. Blue), the latter of which also created and will serve as showrunner on gen:LOCK.

Inspired by mecha anime, gen:LOCK will take place in a dystopian world amid its destruction. The last free society on Earth is in desperate need of some help as it battles its way through a global war. The solution? Bring together the best and brightest among a diverse group of mecha pilots — that is, operatives trained to fight in giant weaponized robots.

Jordan plays protagonist Chase, the first recruit of the titular program who meets and falls in love with expert pilot Miranda Worth, who will be voiced by Fanning. Yamadera will portray Kazu Iida, a transferee from the Japanese military, while Tennant will embody Dr. Rufus Weller, the brains behind the gen:LOCK operations.

Williams will fill the shoes of Cammie McCloud, a Scottish hacker who becomes a new potential candidate for the programAlong with her casting announcement comes a new teaser for the series that reveals further details, specifically about Williams’ and Yamadera’s characters. We mainly hear Tennant and Rial — as Col. Raquel Marin — talking through the entire thing, but these vocal talents plus the gorgeous crisp animation makes the trailer worth taking note of.

“An industrious young tech wiz” with a penchant for “creative” coding sounds like the ideal role for a boisterous actress like Williams, who made her acting debut in Game of Thrones as the fiery Arya to much-deserved critical acclaim. Part of what makes Arya such a fan favorite isn’t just the cuteness, snark, and spunk that Williams possessed as a child actress. It also lies in the haunting depth and ruthlessness that she’s been able to bring to the role as the character’s storyline progresses.

Williams also brought gravitas along to the Doctor Who set when she guested on four episodes back in 2015. She depicts a Viking puppet maker and storyteller named Ashildr fighting to save her village from an alien race. A definite nod to the proclivity for bravery and battle that she exudes as Arya, Williams succeeds in Doctor Who by first being likable enough in her debut episode, elevating what could’ve simply been a rehashed plot device into an intriguing character. She then once again captures a sense of maturity beyond her years in subsequent appearances.

Unfortunately, Williams’ talents have been squandered in other projects, particularly in feature films. Williams definitely makes silly movies like iBoy more watchable than they should be, but to be put in Elle Fanning’s Mary Shelley biopic and be given a part of such minuscule importance was a true waste. She fared better in the quaint Irish comedy Gold, wherein she gets to tap into her quintessential incandescent spirit, and even add a bit of accent mastery into the mix.

Meanwhile, Williams’ experience in voice work initially began with a couple of appearances in Adult Swim’s Robot Chicken. More recently, she served as a key player in the stop-motion film Early Man, a sweet family outing that works best because of a talented ensemble propping up a simple but effective storyline.

And as far as Haddock is concerned, Williams proves to be a real asset to the gen:LOCK team, as well. He says:

“Working with Maisie is as fun as it gets. Her energy and the sense of humor she brings to Cammie is an absolute delight. I’m running out of superlatives to describe how perfect this cast works for the characters, but Maisie truly sounds exactly like how Cammie does in my head — she’s brilliant.

Really, to have a Rooster Teeth production on one’s resume is absolutely something worth celebrating, too. The company has dedicatedly put out high-quality web series for years, and just from teasers so far, gen:LOCK already appears incredibly promising. Williams has likely found a great new TV family should the show succeed.

Sheryl Oh often finds herself fascinated (and let's be real, a little obsessed) with actors and their onscreen accomplishments, developing Film School Rejects' Filmographies column as a passion project. She's not very good at Twitter but find her at @sherhorowitz anyway. (She/Her)