Maisie Williams initially panicked when she found out her Pistol character would be on set watching her shoot the new miniseries.
In Pistol, which follows the Sex Pistols’ rise to fame, the Game of Thrones actress plays Jordan, the model who worked alongside designer Vivienne Westwood and helped pioneer the punk rock look in ’70s London.
Jordan, real name Pamela Rooke, served as a consultant on the show and was allowed on set, and Maisie felt a lot of pressure having the real version of her character watching her work.
“It was a lot of pressure, but honestly, I never needed to feel any type of way. Jordan was never confrontational. She just knew what was what, and if things weren’t right, she’d say,” she told British GQ magazine. “I realised, every single time, I know what I’m getting with her, and it’s me who’s unpredictable… (I told myself) stop thinking everything is either amazing or terrible. Just be.”
While preparing to play Jordan, the 25-year-old realised she had to tone down her mannerisms.
“I’m very emotive in the way that I communicate, but she was just constant,” Maisie explained. “I had to stop moving my eyebrows while I was playing her, because she not only has the most incredible make-up, but her expression is painted – it never moves.”
Maisie admitted she was hesitant about taking on the role at first because it required a lot of nudity and after she aired her concerns, director Danny Boyle explained that Jordan used to show off her body to “make other people feel uncomfortable”.
For her second audition, she embodied Jordan by wearing a sheer top with no bra underneath on a Zoom call and booked the role.
Pistol airs on Hulu and Disney+ later this month.