According to the author of Mara Wilson Writes Stuff, this is the one question she’s asked most frequently: “Are you Matilda?” The answer: “No, but I played her in a movie.”
That movie, of course, is the 1996 kid cinema classic Matilda, which stars Wilson as a neglected child genius who channels her intellectual frustration into telekinesis. But while Matilda Wormwood will always be a six-year-old prodigy — not only in the film, but also in Roald Dahl’s original novel and a smash hit Tony-winning musical — Wilson herself is all grown up.
The onetime child star quit acting in her early teens — “I like to think of it as a mutual break-up: Hollywood didn’t really want me anymore, and I was over it, too,” she explains on her site — and chose instead to live a relatively normal life, attending a regular high school followed by New York University. She currently lives in New York City, where she juggles a day job at a nonprofit with various writing and storytelling gigs — as well as a very popular Twitter account. (Her profile got a major boost last May, when Wilson weighed in on Amanda Bynes’s struggles with an article explaining why child stars tend to go nuts.)
In honor of Matilda‘s new Blu-ray release, Wilson called up EW to chat about the making of the movie, her weird connection to Blake Lively, and awkward encounters with other child stars — as well as what she’s working on now. (Hint: Think memoir.)
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