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Page and Screen – In Praise of Rupert Grint

Page and Screen – In Praise of Rupert Grint
Liam Trim with the latest edition of ‘Page and Screen’…

With the all conquering Harry Potter franchise drawing to a close after a decade of record breaking box office figures and immeasurable sales of merchandise and DVDs, reams are being written attempting to sum up the reasons for the worldwide phenomenon. Recipes for success are being compiled and suggested as Warner Brothers and other studios look for the “next Potter” to lure audiences consistently to cinemas on a huge scale. Children’s authors are being assessed and targeted as execs wonder where to find the next J.K. Rowling. Meanwhile the super rich writer has launched a new website to continue the Potter brand, “Pottermore”, and has revealed that she has waited, perhaps wisely, until after the last film to publish several projects she’s been working on for some time since finishing The Deathly Hallows.

Some say that Rowling’s immense imagination and wonderful writing accounts for the success of the films. The sheer detail of the books helped create a wizarding universe that went beyond the plots. However up and down the country it’s easy to find English teachers, experts and ordinary readers that will think little of Rowling’s talent. Of course she clearly has an ability to create worlds and engaging plots but she is also reliant on influences and is far from a genius writer. Whilst I was sucked in by the books after reading them, unlike my school friends I only embraced The Philosopher’s Stone after seeing the film version, which convinced me Harry Potter wasn’t as childish as it sounded.

Perhaps the fact that Warner Brothers conceded artistic control to British based Heyman Productions ensured the appealing flavour of the series? There are no doubt many different reasons for the spellbinding effect Hogwarts has had on box offices internationally, but as someone who has grown up in the eye of a decade long magical storm, the Harry Potter films transcend the usual critical criteria. As rankings of the films appear all over the web, I have found myself reflecting on the franchise as a whole.

If I had to pick out one key reason for its success it would be the way the films have matured with their audience. Those behind the films deserve some credit for this but if anything they haven’t lived up to the darker depths of the books, until the final film if you believe the early reports from critics. It was Rowling’s masterstroke to pen seven stories that evolved in tone as well as plot. However watching the films has delivered the genuinely unique experience of seeing three child actors grow into young and talented adults, which mirrors the maturing mood of the stories.

Daniel Radcliffe and Emma Watson tend to hog the headlines. He has become a leading man and she has gone from prissy bookworm to stunning, sexy and intelligent model, capable of juggling a demanding degree from a top university with filming and an increasingly diverse career. Recently though, as Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows: Part 2 premiered in Trafalgar Square, the newspapers reserved special mention for the huge cheer that greeted Rupert Grint.

Grint has always been more than the long suffering ginger one. In the early films, when Radcliffe was excruciatingly awful at times in the lead role, Grint provided much needed comic relief and more, with a skill beyond his years. Respected film veteran John Hurt dubbed him a “born actor” and allegedly directors beyond Potter, such as Martin Scorsese, have predicted a bright future for him. In this early screen test, Grint is the clearly the most expressive of the famous trio, inhabiting his role even when he doesn’t have lines to read, unlike the blank faced Radcliffe and two dimensional Watson:

But then a combination of the stresses of the lifestyle change and scripts that let his character down reduced Grint to a predictable and subdued comic presence during the films in the middle of the series. Radcliffe and Watson both grew in confidence to take on more integral and convincing roles in the drama. The final film ought to have plenty of opportunities for Grint to go out with a bang big enough to showcase his true talent though, with the will-they-won’t-they romantic chemistry between Ron and Hermione finally coming to a head and several dramatic moments to sink his acting chops into. Grint has certainly demonstrated his promise elsewhere with performances in Driving Lessons alongside Julie Walters and wild teen drama Cherrybomb.

We’ve been through a lot with Harry, Hermione and Ron and got to know not only them, but a little of the actors that portray them, on the way to their final showdown with Lord Voldemort. Harry Potter will always be a great deal more than just a shadow hanging over the careers of Radcliffe, Watson and Grint. They will all try to shake it off and it will be remarkable if any of them completely succeed. I for one though have a feeling that out of all of them it is Rupert Grint we are still yet to see the best of. He was a lovable Ron but as someone else we haven’t heard of yet he is going to blow us away.


Original article found here: Page and Screen | July 21, 2011

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‘Harry Potter’ Star Rupert Grint: What’s Next?

‘I’m not sure I’m going to miss it,’ actor tells MTV News of ‘Potter.’

Rupert Grint has always been the comic relief when it comes to the Big Three actors in “Harry Potter,” but with the final film opening in theaters Friday (July 15), he is ready to spread his wings and try out some new projects.

“Anything really different, really,” Grint replied when MTV News asked him what his plans are next. “Playing the same character for 10 years really does give you this thirst for new things. I’m not sure I’m going to miss it. I am looking forward to this kind of newfound freedom. Just see where it takes me.”

He certainly seems to be trying to get away from “Potter” as much as possible. Grint’s next project is his anti-war film “Comrade,” which began filming March 28 in Norway. Directed by Petter Næss and costarring David Kross, Florian Lukas and Stig Henrik Hoff, the movie tells the story of English and German pilots who are forced to work together to survive the brutal Norwegian winter; it is a very far cry from anything Grint has done in “Potter.”

After that, his next project is looking more and more likely to be “Eddie the Eagle,” a biopic about British skier Eddie Edwards, the first competitor to represent the U.K. in Olympic ski jumping. Though it still doesn’t have a writer or director attached, Grint is optimistic that production will get under way soon.

“It’s a story that I really like and it’s still in the working yet. I still have faith that it will happen,” he told MTV News. “It’s been in kind of development for a while, but yeah, hopefully it will come up.”

Of all the “Potter” stars, Grint has been the one to have the most big-screen experience. In 2002 he starred in the children’s comedy “Thunderpants,” then followed it up with 2006’s dramedy “Driving Lessons.” Somehow he managed to find time over the past few years during his busy “Potter” shooting schedule to squeeze out two 2010 releases as well: “Cherrybomb” and “Wild Target.”

And the fans respect him for it. When MTV’s Next Movie site ran a recent poll asking readers who they thought would be the most successful “Potter” star, Grint won by a whopping 43 percent. If that doesn’t work out, though, he always has a side career as an ice cream man.


Original article found here: mtv.com| July 18th, 2011

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I celebrated end of Potter filming by buying £60 Vauxhall Carlton

Says Rupert Grint ( Who’s worth £24m )

WITH around £24million in the bank, Rupert Grint is one of Britain’s richest young men.

But the 22-year-old Harry Potter star doesn’t splash his galleons about like Premier League players his age.

The actor, who has enchanted audiences as wizard Ron Weasley for more than a decade, astonishingly confessed to The Sun that he still lives at home with mum and dad – even though he has his own pad in London for occasional stays.

There aren’t even any fancy cars for the homely Hertfordshire lad.

When filming wrapped on the final JK Rowling movie, Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows Part 2, he treated himself to a £60 Vauxhall Carlton and headed off around Europe with mates in a “Wacky Rally”.

He said: “We did about nine countries, all the way to Barcelona. I went with James and Oliver Phelps, who play the twins, and we brought a mechanic along as well. It was a really good adventure. I do love cars but nothing too flash.”

In an exclusive interview with The Sun ahead of the final Potter film’s release on Friday, Rupert gave us a window into his unassuming life, where he is still close to sisters Georgina, 18, Samantha, 15 and Charlotte, 12, brother James, 21, and parents Nigel and Joanne.

Although he rarely splurges on himself, he says he can splash the cash on his family – sometimes on bizarre presents.

He said: “I have kind of got a miniature zoo. We have miniature pigs, donkeys, miniature hedgehogs. They are just smaller than the average hedgehog.

“I have quite a big family, I’m one of five and I have sisters who love animals.”

He has met the Queen and the family of President Obama so I ask Rupert which celebrity he has been most thrilled to meet.

The reply floors me.

“Alan Titchmarsh. Shakin’ Stevens came on to the set too. I only get star struck with really random people like Alan Titchmarsh and EastEnders actors,” he says.

“I met Alan at the Queen’s 80th when she had this big party in the Palace.

“I bumped into him. It’s not like I really watch Ground Force or anything like that.”

Never mind that the Queen and Prince Philip had been sitting right behind him or that Michelle Obama had visited the set with her daughters as a birthday surprise for one of them.

But if meeting heads of state doesn’t excite Rupert, surely there must have been magic in the air when he finally got to kiss co-star Emma Watson in the new film?

Ron Weasley and Emma’s character Hermione Granger finally spell out their feelings for each other in the series’ gripping finale by locking lips.

But Rupert says: “Neither of us were looking forward to it. It was a tricky one. That scene has been an anticipated moment, the relationship has built up from the early films.

“There was a pressure to get it right. I knew Emma when she was nine and we have closely watched each other grow up.

“So kissing this girl just seemed a strange thing to be doing, not right.”

Down-to-earth Rupert seems immune to the weaknesses of many young stars.

Daniel Radcliffe, who plays Harry, recently had to give up booze because his drinking had got out of control.

Rupert insists that he felt no such need to release the pressure with alcohol.

He said: “No, no, no, there has always been this anticipation for us to fall into that stereotype and it has never really been an issue for me.

“It’s because we film in Watford, which isn’t the most glamorous of spots. If we had filmed in America or something it could have been disastrous. I never felt any pressure. It was just fun really.” The constant and intense attention of fans makes this level-headed approach even more remarkable.

Rupert isn’t even offended by strangers heckling him.

He smiled and said: “People do call me Ron in the street. I have grown up with it, it has become my second name almost.

“I do answer to it. Or they call me Weasley or Ginger.”

Although he doesn’t enjoy people taking sneaky photographs while he’s in a restaurant.

He said: “There are moments when you don’t really want to do it, if you are having a meal and people are taking their camera phones out and taking pictures of you.

“You can spot them. They pretend to take pictures of their friend and they slightly offset the camera so they can get you.”

But he is grateful for some aspects of fame – all the fan mail and presents. For some reason he gets sent lots of pyjamas.

Odd encounters with obsessed fans also raise a smile.

He said with a laugh: “There was a time when I was in LA, I think, I met this guy who had a tattoo of me, Dan and Emma on his arm.

“He hadn’t quite got the resemblance. I looked like Anne Robinson.”

But how does he feel now this immense experience is over?

Rupert said: “It is weird to think it was the last one. There is a scene right at the end, after the battle, with the three of us on the bridge.

“I found that scene emotional, I still haven’t got used to it.”

But surely the post-Potter future is bright for Rupert, offering the chance to make different kinds of films?

In between the magical movies he has already appeared in low-budget projects including Wild Target, Cherrybomb, Driving Lessons and Thunderpants.

Coming up is Comrade, in which he plays a British airman shot down over Norway in the Second World War.

And Rupert has been lined up to play Eddie “The Eagle” Edwards in a biopic of the Winter Olympics sensation.

He says: “I want to keep on acting, definitely.”

We can only hope his career fares better than the dreams of Brit ski jumper Eddie – who came dead last in two events at the 1988 Winter Olympics.

The_Sun


Original article found here: The Sun| July 8th, 2011

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Filmland in London: A Cherrybomb Phenomenon

In connection with the DVD launch of the Irish indie film, Cherrybomb, there was a Q&A with the film’s leading man, Rupert Grint, who is best known from the Harry Potter films – and thanks to www.rupert-grint.us, Filmland.dk was present.

Two Guys and One Girl

In August of 2008 the production of Cherrybomb was implemented in just 5 weeks and with a moderate budget of $1.5 million. It was directed by Lisa Barros D’Sa and Glenn Leyburn: It deals with the two best friends Malachy (Rupert Grint) and Luke (Robert Sheehan). Malachy is doing well in school, works at the local Titanic Leisureplex and has loving parents; Luke needs to take care of his alcoholic father and sells drugs to stay in their home. But the two soon become each other’s worst competitors: Michelle (Kimberley Nixon) returns to Belfast to live with her father who is also Malachy’s boss. Michelle is dealing with her father’s neglect, and at the same time she makes Malachy and Luke top each other with increasingly more dangerous and illegal actions. However, the ultimate rebellion ends fatally, and the three are changed forever.
Yours truly went to London to see Cherrybomb; it is definitely a breath of fresh air in the teen film genre and is carried by the impressive acting by the three young actors. In an admirable fashion, the film portrays how two friends fight to stay together in a world where expectations, infatuation, lust and jealousy both burden and distort their outlook on life. The story of the film unfolds in Belfast, but the city’s issues do not constitute a leading role in the film – on the contrary, it focuses on the three main characters’ development. The film’s cinematography with visual and artistic elements preserves a pace which keeps perfectly intact with the story’s climatic curve – and the soundtrack by David Holmes (Oceans films, red.) is absolutely superb.

Grint’s First Sex Scene

The stage is set on Regent Street in London, where the big Apple store has been taken over by fans who travelled from Germany, Switzerland and USA to be present at a Q&A with the young actor Rupert Grint who we all know best from his role as Ron Weasley in the Harry Potter films. Apart from fans there are also journalists and photographers present, they are all interested in getting an insight into what this Cherrybomb movement is really all about. In the company of the Scottish TV and radio personality Edith Bowman, the shy and sympathetic Rupert Grint took the stage in front of the crowd. At first, Edith Bowman was in charge of the questions, but afterwards the attendees also got the chance to ask Grint questions. For the first time in his career, Grint participates in a sex scene which has created quite a bit of buzz – and when asked how he felt about it, he answered: “It is a bit embarrassing, yeah. Obviously, because you’re not wearing many clothes. There are a few people in the room. Once you kind of get into it, it gets a little bit better. It’s fine. But it was weird, because we were in someone else’s house, which was quite strange. But yeah, it was fine. It is worse watching it, definitely.”

A Liberating World without Harry Potter

Grint also touched upon the fact that it is important for him to appear in films which are different from the Harry Potter genre, and he has also said that he feels liberated after finishing the final chapter of Harry Potter. He plans to continue as an actor, but it won’t be in the nearest future as he looks forward to a longer break from it all: “It is a bit scary, but it’s also kind of liberating (to be able to do anything). It’s nice. It was quite sad on the last day on set, it was quite emotional. I wasn’t really prepared for how emotional it got. It has been most of my life.” He also said that he would consider doing a voice for an animated film, and he wouldn’t turn down any theatre roles. When asked the question of which iconic character he would have liked to play, if he had had the chance, he answered: “Yeah, Clockwork Orange, the guy in that would have been really cool.” So maybe it’s not too difficult to imagine a remake of this classic with Grint in the lead?

Campaign: Two Guys, One Girl and 10.000 Fans

But this film’s road to the DVD launch has been a long and intricate process, which most audiences won’t give a second thought. The process from production to the big screen met so many obstacles that it was only made possible with a little help from the film’s fans. The film’s distribution turned out to be critical because of the financial crisis. The Little Film Company was contacted by the fan website www.rupert-grint.us and together they launched a campaign which was to convince distribution companies to invest money in Cherrybomb. The campaign was primarily based on a petition and an official Cherrybomb Fan Campaign Video was made where even Denmark was represented. This video was used by The Little Film Company and shown to buyers at film festivals such as Cannes. Thereby the power was placed in the hands of fans when it came to PR-strategies and opportunities to find distribution for the film. Rupert Grint has also commented on this initiative: ““I am backing this campaign wholeheartedly. I’m delighted by the huge support, the film has already received on the official Facebook page and other sites on the web and am so grateful to my fans in particular, who have travelled the world to support the film at festivals and preview screenings.”

“It was mind boggling!”

In an attempt to gain a deeper insight into the campaign, I got an interview with Jo Galloway from www.rupert-grint.us. Exclusively based on volunteering from the website’s staff and fans, this campaign came into being in an impressive manner. Among other things, Jo Galloway could tell me that the hard work was not financed or supported by donations and such – and in total they have travelled about 85.000 kilometres around the world to participate at premieres, interviews and film festivals, anywhere the buzz could benefit the film’s future. To answer the question of whether or not the great amount of attention and support came as a surprise, Galloway said: “We had no idea the news media would pick it up like that. We were talked about on every major media news site from the New York Post to Entertainment Weekly, and even on SKY news TV! We made news paper headlines and had many journalists contacting us asking for interviews and such. It was mind boggling!”

Powerful and Relentless Fans

The purpose of the campaign was to show the film distributors that there was an interest in getting the film to the big screen, and after a very short time, they had already gathered 10.000 signatures on their website, which far surpassed their expectations: “We didn’t think the campaign would achieve what it did. We just thought we’d catch the attention of a few media sites. We’ve always been a dedicated and motivated fan-base though so we were determined to make something happen even if it was something small.” The most incredible aspect about the massive support was that it came from an audience who hadn’t had the chance to see the film yet, and about the film’s immediate attraction, Galloway said: “I think it was the Rupert-effect and the fans really. Many people who might not usually pay attention to him started to do so because we were promoting Cherrybomb to anybody who would listen. We find it a little easy to win folks over because they all love him as Ron in the Harry Potter films. Plus people generally like Rupert and of the three Potter stars he’s always gets comments that he’ll be the break out star. He has always been the underdog when it comes to media attention but despite that his acting is always praised by critics. I think people want to see him succeed.” However, it is nothing new that smaller film companies use this approach when it comes to the distribution of films, and Galloway completely agrees: “The fans do have a lot of power and we proved that! This type of thing isn’t new though. For decades fans have rallied together to save their favorite TV show from being canceled or to get a movie shown in the theater. I think with the amount of buzz our campaign generated it probably reminded a lot of these distribution companies that the fans can be a really good tool in helping them secure a deal. The important factor in making it work though is to have a strong enough and big enough group of people who are relentless. If you have that the sky is the limit.”

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Written by Majbritt Sorensen


Original article on Filmland.dk

Rupert Grint interview exclusive: The last scenes of Harry Potter will be overwhelming

Harry Potter star Rupert Grint talks about his new film Cherrybomb and how he feels about the end of Harry Potter

IF there’s anything Rupert Grint’s latest film has shown us, it’s that Ron Weasley isn’t as innocent as he seems.
Harry Potter star Rupert Grint gets hot and heavy in Cherrybomb with co-star Kimberley Nixon, breaking away from his goofy Potter character with a slightly awkward sex scene and a brand new ‘bad boy’ image.

Having shot to global stardom at age 11, Rupert hasn’t lived a particularly normal teenage life, but just half-an-hour into Cherrybomb it’s obvious his Potter days haven’t kept him sheltered from Skins-style teenage mayhem.

OK.co.uk’s NIKKI BARR sat down for a quick chat with Rupert about sex scenes, Potter parties and strange fan mail….

How did you feel after watching Cherrybomb for the first time?
It was two years ago that we filmed it so it’s weird. It was a great experience, it was a really different kind of filming experience, mainly because of the budget, I guess, but I was in a different country and it was a very quick pace and a very different kind of film [to Harry Potter].

What were the main differences on set?
The dressing rooms and stuff…they were a bit less comfortable! But the main thing was the pace. We were doing 10 scenes a day, it was a real pressure to finish everything, we couldn’t do like 50 takes on one job, we had to get it right the first few times. It had a real fast energy about it. Which I liked, it kind of puts you right in the moment. Harry Potter is a very unique thing and it’s a bit like a machine really, there’s a lot of waiting about where as there was none of that with Cherrybomb. It was all kind of full on. It was a real experience, I know how ‘real’ films are put together now.

Did you find it difficult breaking out of your role as Ron Weasley?
I didn’t think about it, Cherrybomb came up quickly, in the space of a week actually, I met the directors and read the script and then was on a flight to Belfast. But yeah, it’s kind of what attracted me to it. It’s a real different kind of character, he’s a bit more complicated and I suppose it was a more ‘adult’ role. I don’t think I was ever nervous about that because as I get older I’ll be doing more grown-up things.

You said the sex scene was awkward…
It’s this weird kind of thing. It’s got this bizarre atmosphere, you have crew watching you and different cameras everywhere and you feel really kind of self-conscious. Actually reading it on paper is a lot worse than filming it. When you see it come together it’s more abstract and it’s nothing too graphic. It’s worse for Kim [Kimberley Nixon], you see a lot more of her. Once we did it, it was fine. It was quick, we did it in not many takes at all.

Have your family seen it yet?
Yeah, that’s probably the worst part [laughs], we just don’t talk about it!

Harry Potter changed your life, do you ever wonder where you would be without it?
I don’t know, it’s a scary thought. I was very fortunate. I saw something on Newsround, actually [which OK.co.uk remembers seeing as well!] it’s weird. I really enjoy acting and if I can keep going I definitely will.

Do you get offered a lot of scripts off the back of Harry Potter?
There wasn’t really a lot of time to do other stuff because we were filming Harry Potter every day of the year, so it’s quite hard to find the gaps to do other things. Without Harry Potter I wouldn’t really be… it’s quite a tough industry to get into so I’ve been quite lucky. Harry Potter was a bit of a fluke anyway.

Would you ever quit acting and go to university like Emma Watson?
It’s always going to be an option but I’ll avoid it if I can. I want to keep on acting.

How has filming the last few scenes been?

It’s a comfortable atmosphere, but the end is quite daunting, we’ve known all the crew for half of our lives and we know the characters so, well, it’s just easy. But I’m excited as well, I’m looking forward to moving on and seeing what else is there for me.

Will you have a huge end-of-filming party?
I hope so, we haven’t had a party since the second one. That was a great wrap party but we’ll have some kind of a bash.

Has it been emotional on set?
Not yet, I’m guessing once we get to the last few weeks… I don’t know how I’m going to react it’s going to be quite overwhelming. It’s like ten years of your life is down to one shot, really, and then it’s all over. It’s going to be strange. I’ll probably get over it [laughs].

What has been your favourite Harry Potter moment?
It has all been really good. But the first scene, the first day, was pretty cool. Because, obviously, I had no idea what to expect or how many people were involved. It was exciting.

Will you remain friends with the cast?
Definitely, it’s an intimate process and you do kind of warm to people quite a lot. We’re good mates. There’s a big list of people involved but we’ll definitely stay in touch.

What’s happening next in your life?
A few things, I’ve got a film called Wild Target [Rupert plays an assassin’s apprentice] coming out next month. It was good fun playing with the guns and stuff.

And you’re going to play Eddie the Eagle [British ski-jumping record holder]…can you even ski?
I’ve never skied in my life so it’s going to be interesting. That will be quite fun I think, it’ll be cool.

What’s the weirdest thing you’ve been sent by a fan?
I get a lot of pyjamas, all different kinds but mainly oriental style.

Have you ever had a crush on a co-star?
Yeah, maybe when I was 11, it’s kind of natural, it was like a school yard [on the Harry Potter set]. Probably some of the extras!

We hear you have an ice cream van, if you were going to impress a girl with an ice cream from your van, what would the topping be?

Hmm, I don’t really have anything in the van at the moment, but probably flake, the classic flake.

Which topping would you say represents you best?
Hundreds and thousands, rainbow.


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