Deathly Hallows Part II : Daniel Radcliffe Interviewed by the Fansites
In August, last year, the Harry Potter fansites gathered around their ‘phones to enjoy a twenty-minute conference call with Daniel Radcliffe.
He answered our questions on Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part I and II, because he knew that he would be conquering the Great White Way, once again, this summer, and would not be able to commit the amount of time he would like to to publicising Part II.
Last October, we posted what he said about Part I, and we are finally able to complete our report with some wonderful quotes about Helena Bonham Carter’s Hermione, his favourite scene in the film – and, my particular favourite, his love for a Great British Actress that isn’t in the films!
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Q : what were the most challenging scenes to film physically?
DR : the stuff actually in Gringott’s bank, in the Lestrange vault, where all the treasure is multiplying and multiplying, that was very hard, because I was having to scale this… the way we did it was we had moving platforms, on the set, so that, as the treasure multiplied, these platforms would move up, and I would struggle onto the next one and onto the next one and onto the next one… and, yes, I don’t think my calf muscles have ever worked quite so hard… so, that was physically a very challenging scene…
Q : what was it like to film the scene with Helena Bonham Carter playing Hermione as Bellatrix?
DR : it was very, very funny! It was actually, it was one of my favourite scenes on the film to do… was all of us, Warwick Davis, myself and Helena and Rupert, all on the cart, going into Gringott’s bank… because Helena and Warwick are hysterically funny, both of them, and… I basically became Helena Bonham Carter’s PA on this film… I was going, ‘Helena, you’re gonna hold that coffee? You want that coffee in the shot, or do you want me to move it somewhere else, for you? Are you going to use that character thing you’re doing, now?’ Because she’s mad and brilliant and wonderful, and everything I love about the English people, and… so that was great fun…. and actually, the scene then, when she transforms back into Emma, was also hilarious, because on that cart, me, Rupert and Emma were all soaking wet, and it was great fun… it was, you know, very, very funny… yes, Helena as Hermione was very, very funny, and um… and or, rather, Hermione as Helena… it’s all very confusing…
Q : did she have to be a bit more conservative?
DR : yes, yes, yes, I mean, yes, she certainly did, I think, than she normally would be, as Bellatrix.
Q : I wondered if you could talk a bit about the Final Battle and the emotion of the scene, now that Harry has gone away and comes back to find everyone fighting and Hogwarts on fire.
DR : it’s a very… it’s a bizarre thing… particularly… it wasn’t so much the courtyard scene, the battle, which was emotional, it was actually seeing the Great Hall destroyed and turned into a kind of field hospital, um, which would be kind of the slightly more emotionally shocking moment… because the Great Hall is such an iconic set, and seeing it destroyed is bizarre, um, so yeah, I think, you know, the emotions for us all at that… that really brought home the fact that these films are coming to a close, I think… as sad as that was, it gave us all a kind of awareness of how… how much it mattered that we get this right… and how much we owe it to all the people that have gone to these films, for supporting us, for so long… to get it right, as well as for ourselves, which was a huge motivation, because you know, we’ve been there for so many years, and we don’t want to go out, you know, in any other way than spectacularly… but also, for the people that have watched for so long, we know we owe it to the, as well, to make this film the best we can…
Q : it was reported that Kate Winslet was asked to play the Grey Lady, but she turned it down, who is playing the role, and what was it like acting alongside them, in such a pivotal scene?
DR : I tell you what… I’m just going to ask somebody if I can tell you the answer to that question… if you don’t mind… [15 seconds of tense silence, as we wait, with baited breath] well, hello again! Unfortunately, I’ve just found out that that hasn’t actually been announced, yet, so I can’t actually say… but it is a wonderful British actress, who is, you know, very, very… who is very well known, and very, very… you know, held in high esteem by lots and lots of people… somebody, on a personal note, who I was thrilled to get to work with, and she’s wonderful in the role, and brings a kind of… and brings both the loneliness and isolation and also the kind of… embittered anger that that character needs to have… I hadn’t actually heard the Kate Winslet rumour… I think that, if that had come to fruition, I don’t think I would have been able to look her in the eye, I’m far too in live with her… so, in a way I’m quite glad that didn’t happen, because I think my performance would have just fallen apart… I’m sorry I can’t tell you more than that, though…
Q : what was your favourite scene in the movie, and why?
DR : my favourite scene in the film, was… that’s another good question… there are so many to choose from… and the truth is, actually, because, you know, we filmed this film over a period of seventeen months, so, I’ve kind of forgotten a lot of the stuff that we did at the beginning… um, but I’ll tell you, actually, there are two favourite scenes… one of them is when I’m going into the forest, and I see the ghosts of my parents and of Sirius and Lupin, and they are… and they come back to give me guidance and comfort in the, in theory, the last moments in Harry’s life… I’ve always found that scene, actually when I read it in the book to be one of the most moving moments in all the films… and also, on a personal note, I missed having Michael Gambon on set, very, very much, and so to do the scene… the King’s Cross scene, where we meet in a sort of half-life limbo world, which was also one of my favourites, because it was a kind of amazing set, it was slightly odd, disturbing, slightly more surreal than Harry Potter has ever been, before… so that would be my favourite scene, probably.