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‘Matilda’ Star Mara Wilson Dealt With Trauma As a Child and Was Once Referred to As a ‘Spoiled Brat’

Mara Wilson’s life never remained the same after she embodied the famous role of Matilda Wormwood from the eponymous old-time family movie “Matilda.” Wilson, who is all-grown and forging ahead in her chosen field, was impacted positively and negatively by fame. 

Many young kids in the ’90s longed to possess Matilda Wormwood’s superpowers from “Matilda.” But not even the actress Mara Wilson possessed them.

At the age of nine, Wilson perfectly delivered the role of the gentle, easy-going, but strong-willed Matilda and became a model for intelligent kids. However, the actress lived a different life from her movie character. Here’s a look through the vices she endured as a child actor in Hollywood. 

Mara Wilson
Image: Pinterest

Early Years In Hollywood

Mara Wilson has been in Hollywood since 1993, but it is safe to say that she has been active for a little over a decade. This is because Wilson had a 12-year hiatus from the spotlight. 

Growing up, the star actress became a hero among little children. Her roles in movies like “Mrs. DoubtFire,” “Miracle On 34th Street” and “A Simple Wish” plunged her into stardom, and she was barely ten years old. 

It felt good to be in all that Hollywood glitz and glamor as a child star, but being a minor in the industry had its effect on Wilson. She particularly endured loss while filming the show when her mother died a few months after “Matilda” wrapped up filming. 

She appeared in a few movies after her mom’s death and before taking a hiatus from the spotlight. However, Mara Wilson’s mother’s death is not the only thing that caused her to withdraw; she also suffered trauma from social vices.

 

It Wasn’t All Bad

Wilson, 34, once recalled in a 2016 column how she and her family took a trip to Japan. She explained that they went to promote “Miracle On 34th Street,” and it felt refreshing.

The star recalled telling her mom that Japan was “so much better than the United States.” She felt like the people there liked her, and her translator also confirmed it.

The “BoJack Horseman” star shared that acting had always been something she loved, and it was more like a hobby. However, she clarified in her column that her parents never forced her to act. 

Wilson’s parents supported her dreams and made sure to keep her grounded, although they were proud of her achievements. She noted that John Hughes, who directed “Miracle On 34th Street,” was kind to her, and he never talked down to her.

However, once the movie was in production, things slightly changed. Wilson shared that her script was altered such that the role portrayed her as “cute.”

What had initially drawn Wilson to the “Susan” role was the character’s smartness. But as soon as she and her mom signed up for it, the production team wanted her to be cute, something Wilson was not comfortable with. 

There Were Not-so-positive Effects Too

By the time Wilson was in her early teenage years, she had found out Hollywood was not as cool as she thought. The Internet and media highly contributed to the “Helluva Boss” star’s wariness of the industry.

She once recalled being 13-years-old and had been called for an interview with reporters. Unfortunately, the Q&A session did not go well because Wilson dared to speak her mind.

The next day she saw her name in the news publication, and the writer had described her as a “spoiled brat.” The transition to her teenage years was a rude awakening because Wilson realized that the criteria for being a teenage actor were no longer about wittiness. 

The moviemakers wanted pretty teenage actors, and she did not feel like she was one. The Internet also contributed to Wilson’s misery and withdrawal from the public eye.

Although it was still the early stage of social media when Wilson was growing, she was a victim of internet misconduct. She wrote of a time when she stumbled on a sexually explicit page.

Wilson had seen horrifying details alluding to her sexually, even though she was a child. She felt ashamed about being the subject of such explicit content. She noted that the sexual harassment she faced was from the media and the Internet. 

What Is Wilson Up To These Days?

Mara Wilson appeared in three memorable A-list movies in the movie industry as a child, and since then, she has retreated. However, as an adult, Wilson had learned to appreciate her craft through other means.

These days she portrays her Hollywood knowledge through writing. She has also taken voicing roles in recent years. For Wilson, acting is more like a hobby now, and she only ever appears in her friends’ projects. 

The former child star noted that writing was an integral part of her life in present times. She added that she had a lot of writing projects in the works and she found it to be more interesting. 

Ashabi
Ashabi is a writer who enjoys reading and putting her dynamic thoughts on people, places, and concepts into writing. Her range of writing interests includes literary works, creative writing reviews, lifestyle, celebrity catchups, health, travel, world news, and Poetry. Ashabi is a graduate of Linguistics, and she has an avid interest in entertainment, languages, and global history.
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