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For ‘Potter’ kids, a magical journey

As the decade-long saga comes to a close, and after all manner of magical exploits dazzle Muggle moviegoers, the final image on screen in “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 2” is low-key. The trio of young wizards stand silently side-by-side, their expressions revealing exhaustion, relief, triumph and anticipation.

This seems a fitting visual for the actors who have brought J.K. Rowling’s characters of Harry Potter, Hermione Granger and Ron Weasley to vivid life.

On Friday, the final movie in the eight-film series opens amid much fanfare and some nostalgia.

Daniel Radcliffe, 21, Emma Watson, 21, and Rupert Grint, 22, embarked on the Potter series as children not knowing what magical mystery tour awaited them. They have come out the other end as experienced adult actors with intriguing futures beckoning — though, with the millions each earned for the eight films, they could afford to take a very long sabbatical.

“Emma was 10 and Daniel and Rupert were 11 when I started writing for them,” says “Potter” screenwriter Steve Kloves. “I wrote appropriately for their age group. But by the end, I wrote as challenging material for them as I did for Michael Gambon (who plays Hogwarts headmaster Albus Dumbledore) or anybody else. In fact, I think I gave them the most challenging material.”

The series may be named after the bespectacled boy wizard, but his two best buddies have been just as instrumental in keeping record-breaking numbers of fans bewitched by the Potter films, the most financially successful film franchise of all time, having earned $6.4 billion worldwide to date.

“Casting the three was the single most important decision in the history of these movies,” Kloves says. “At the end of the day, the series will live and die on the strength of those three children. It won’t live and die on how cool a dragon looks. I think Jo Rowling would admit the plot is quite secondary to the characters and what they embody and represent.”

Where to from here?

Now that the final film is about to hit theaters, and the globally famous trio of young actors has walked the red carpet in London for the eighth and final time, their adult careers loom. They have morphed from wide-eyed, slightly gawky kids to full-fledged, graceful actors.

When half of your life has been spent making the most popular films in history, where do you go from there?

For Watson, spending a decade on the “Potter” set has been what she’s known best. “I’ve grown up doing this so it doesn’t feel like a job. It feels like part of my identity.”

All three have taken roles while on breaks from shooting Potter, but now the next phase of their lives begins in earnest. “Little did I know when I started that I would be watching the last film while starring in a play on Broadway,” says Radcliffe, who is playing the lead role in the revival of the 1952 musical “How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying.”

“There are so many things I will miss about Harry and playing the part. There are some things I won’t miss, but I will miss playing an action hero. It’s bittersweet, absolutely.”

Grint was struck by sadness on the final day of filming, particularly after Radcliffe made an emotional speech about his production “family.”

“The last day of filming was unexpectedly more emotional than I thought it would be,” he says. “It was a weird feeling when we finished. I didn’t know what to do with myself. I felt kind of lost, really, without it. But it was a relief, too. I was exhausted and looking forward to having a bit of freedom. I was also quite sad because a huge part of my life had ended.”

Her years spent in the company of her two pals, Ron and Harry, left a deep imprint on Watson. “I’m going to miss it so much,” she says. “There’s a big hole to fill. Dan, Rupert and I have this amazing chemistry because we have years and years of history. David (Yates, the director) kept saying, “Use this bond you really have and bring it to the movie.’ And we really did try.”

Yates says Radcliffe relished being the series emissary.

“He is older than his years,” says Yates. “He would readily enjoy the role, especially when we had guests, because he is Harry Potter, basically.”

But Radcliffe also longs to be other characters.

In order to attempt something far removed from the magical world of Hogwarts, he took the role of ambitious young J. Pierrepont Finch in the musical.

During a break in “Potter” filming in 2007, Radcliffe also played the lead role in “Equus” on London’s West End and later on Broadway.

But “How to Succeed” called upon entirely different skills from riding a broomstick or acting with giant puppet creatures.

“I took a lot of dance lessons,” he says. “It’s not something I had a natural ability for. I just had to take a lot of time and learn it. The musical is a huge amount of fun. It’s not like Equus where it was a physical and mental effort.”

But Radcliffe has always been one for a challenge, according to those who have watched him grow up on set. Still, he recently owned up to drinking rather heavily in his late teens, during the filming of “Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince” in 2007 and 2008.

“I became reliant on (alcohol) to enjoy stuff,” he said in the latest issue of British GQ. “There were a few years there when I was just so enamored with the idea of living some sort of famous person’s lifestyle that really isn’t suited to me.”

He says he hasn’t had a drink since August 2010. Indeed, at the November premiere of the last film, “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 1” in London, he told USA TODAY that he signed autographs for fans gathering for days in Leicester Square, then skipped the premiere after-party.

“I came straight home,” he said the day after the London premiere. “I had a bowl of Sugar Puffs. I treated myself. I actually had some Ben & Jerry’s as well. I did not wake up with even a remotely sore head.”

Chris Columbus, who cast the trio and directed the first two “Potter” films (“The Sorcerer’s Stone” and “The Chamber of Secrets”), says he saw his job as “making those kids feel like they were in a really welcoming, warm, comfortable environment. They didn’t have a lot of experience, and they needed that to be able to perform.”

Columbus adds: “If we could have looked ahead 10 years and known it would be as successful as it has been, I think we all would have been a little more relaxed.”

But in those early films, Columbus says, he spent a lot of time standing beside the camera, encouraging the kids to focus on their lines.

“On that first film, at any one point any one of those kids would be distracted, so we had three, sometimes four, cameras running all the time,” he says. “The first film was shot a bit like a documentary because the kids were in such awe of being on a set that they’d say a line and then look at each other and smile or look up at the lights and start to laugh.”

Mature films beckon

Those days are long gone. All three are seasoned pros, and their upcoming projects don’t have a whiff of magic about them:

Radcliffe has “Woman in Black,” a horror thriller coming out in January.

Watson made a film called “My Week With Marilyn,” out in November. A young style icon, she recently took a leave from Brown University to create her own fashion line for People Tree and her eco-friendly Pure Threads. She also has modeled in Lancome ads.

Grint just finished shooting the World War II drama “Comrade,” which comes out next year. It’s based on the true story of a pair of British RAF pilots who shoot down a plane with Nazi fighters and then crash on a mountainside in Norway.

After playing a cheeky character known for comic relief, Grint was happy to undertake something weightier.

“To film in a different country where it was minus-25 and snow up to your knees was a real experience,” says Grint. “It was a lot more comfortable working on “Harry Potter’ when you have this big dressing room and there’s a bit more luxury. But it was nice to see a different side.”

Grint can’t imagine what next year might be like, with no Potter to return to. “I think it’ll really hit me next year after the DVD has come out and it’s all kind of faded away and become quiet.”
Watson also felt mixed emotions at the end of the Potter era.

“I felt very privileged to have played Hermione,” Watson says. “She’s someone young girls can look up to because she’s true to herself. She’s smart and an incredibly courageous and loyal friend who keeps a cool head in extremely difficult situations.”

The three on-screen pals have remained in touch since filming their final scene, just as their characters do after leaving Hogwarts. But will they still be friends 20 years down the road, as their characters are?

“Oh, yeah,” says Grint. “We’ll always be in touch because we’ve all shared this unique experience together. That will always keep us friends.”


Original article found here: courierpostonline.com | July 11th, 2011

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Harry Potter ready to cast his final spell


With the massive impact the Harry Potter movies have had over the last decade, it’s difficult to conjure up the image of an anxious David Heyman.

But the Potter producer admits he was “incredibly nervous” about the future of the franchise just before the inaugural movie, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, opened in 2001.

“I couldn’t even get a two-picture deal before the release of that first one,” he recalled while promoting Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows — Part 1 in London.

He has no worries now as the much anticipated Deathly Hallows — Part 2 opens on July 15. The blockbuster is poised to set box-office records, which will likely include surpassing the North American opening weekend of The Dark Knight, a staggering US$158.4-million.

Still, Heyman confesses that he has mixed emotions just like the films’ fans — a combination of sadness, celebration and frenzy befitting the dramatic conclusion to an iconic string of movies.

The great news for all concerned is that the series seems to be going out with a bang. In the finale, wizard Harry Potter (Daniel Radcliffe) confronts the evil Lord Voldemort (Ralph Fiennes) in a momentous showdown. “Part 2 is like a big opera with huge battles,” director David Yates says.

Of course, this last instalment in the series also features the long-awaited kiss between Hermione (Emma Watson) and Ron (Rupert Grint), while their burgeoning relationship offers much needed comic relief from the unrelenting tension.

“We go off on this little adventure together,” Watson says. “It’s kind of like a comedy act because it’s the first time that you see them in tune.

“I really enjoyed the experience. Rupert is a great comedic actor, and so we had a really good time bringing the humour out of everything that we could.”

There’s also a graduation at the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, which includes “lump-in-the-throat” nostalgic sequences.

Some ghostly apparitions recall family and friends from the past. And, an ethereal Dumbledore (Michael Gambon) presents himself to expose mind-boggling secrets from his younger days.

Still, the epic wand duel between Harry and Voldemort is the climactic set piece. It’s rejigged from the book to include a chase through the halls of Hogwarts and a mind-boggling brawl in which the “apparating” combatants appear and disappear.

Most pundits predict that Part 2 will be the best Potter picture yet. “It’s the perfect way to sign off,” says Heyman, a former studio executive who first saw film potential in J.K. Rowling’s books. Indeed, he was the optimistic filmmaker who persuaded a skeptical Rowling to do movie versions of her novels before they became a global phenomenon. He was also the stubborn movie maven who resisted studio demands to Americanize Potter, and backed Rowling when she insisted on the English setting and an English cast.

All the fretting seems moot now. Rowling has set worldwide publishing records, selling more than 450 million copies of the seven-book series. The eight films, based on the novels, will likely hit a box-office total of US$7.5-billion by the time Deathly Hallows — Part 2 runs its theatrical course this summer.

Even more amazing is the fact that multiple directors have nurtured the film versions of the books, which became darker and more threatening as they progressed.

American director Chris Columbus, who made his mark with the Home Alone movies, introduced Potter to the film world with Philosopher’s Stone and The Chamber of Secrets.

Mexican director Alfonso Cuarón brought a furious flair to The Prisoner of Azkaban. Brit Mike Newell took on the fourth, The Goblet of Fire, and added foreboding to the narrative.

Former British TV director David Yates arrived to heighten the tautness, in the fifth Potter movie, The Order of the Phoenix, then The Half-Blood Prince and the two-part finale.

Radcliffe credits Yates for refining the performances in the pictures by quietly expecting more from his three lead actors.

“He was always telling us that we could do better,” says Radcliffe, currently receiving raves for his headlining role in the Broadway musical How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying.

By the time they approached the acting demands of both Deathly Hallows pictures, Yates had them ready for great challenges. “It really was a natural progression,” Radcliffe says. “It didn’t feel like we were being asked to make a massive leap. It felt like we were being allowed to do what we had been preparing to do for the last two or three years.”

Watson agrees that the director raised the acting bar from The Order of the Phoenix onward. “The thing about working with David Yates is that you always hear this word truth, and finding the truth, and being honest and real,” she says. “He wants it to be from the heart. Because of that, I think that made us better.”


Original article found here: arts.nationalpost.com| July 10th, 2011

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‘Harry Potter’ class graduates without child-actor woes

LOS ANGELES — If the young cast of the “Harry Potter” films received report cards for their school days at Hogwarts, they’d all probably earn the notation, “plays well with others.”

Cast as impressionable children in Hollywood’s biggest fantasy franchise, Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, Rupert Grint and their many young co-stars have maneuvered through 11 years of fame — and the temptations it brings — without any whispers of Lindsay Lohan-style meltdowns that can derail child actors.

They’ve grown up smart, humble, polite and professional, eager to balance modest private lives with productive acting careers rather than leap into the party-till-dawn celebrity lifestyle.

The actors and the headmasters of the Warner Bros. franchise say it wasn’t magic that kept the kids on their best behavior. It was the luck of the draw when the youngsters were first cast, good parenting, mindful shepherding that resembled the rigors and care of the finest boarding schools, and a sheltered workplace outside of London, far from Hollywood’s madding crowds.

“It’s very different doing it in England,” said Radcliffe, who was 11 when cast in the title role as the boy wizard for 2001’s “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone” and turns 22 the week after the mid-July debut of the final film, “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2.”

“In America, you’re treated as an actor first and a kid second. Here, you’re very much treated as a kid first and an actor second. In fact, you’re not really treated as an actor. You’re treated as a kid on a film set, which is how it should be, because that’s all you are at that point. No one’s an actor at 12.”

And with the performers so young, their parents were instrumental in steering the children through busy working lives and the madness of instant celebrity.

“We couldn’t have done it without the family support that’s kept all three of them and the supporting cast all lovely, lovely people,” said David Barron, a producer on most of the “Harry Potter” films. “They’ve got very strong families who kept them really strongly grounded.”

With tens of millions of “Harry Potter” fans to please and billions of dollars at stake, Warner Bros. went to great lengths to protect and nurture the stars through eight films and a decade of hard work.

Sets to create author J.K. Rowling’s Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry and other Potter locations were built at Leavesden Studios northwest of London, giving the filmmakers a controlled environment where they could work and essentially help raise their young charges.

“It’s been a bit of a bubble, and it’s been very self-contained, and I think we just have good people around us,” said Watson, who was 10 when cast as Hermione Granger and now is 21. “We’ve just been lucky that we haven’t been exploited in any way.”

Radcliffe, Watson, Grint and such co-stars as Tom Felton, Bonnie Wright, Evanna Lynch and Matthew Lewis had tutors on set, along with armies of studio publicists to help coach them through the media circus of almost-annual premieres and press junkets to promote each film.

The filmmakers say Leavesden became a kind of Hogwarts boarding school for the cast.

“It was a place that was just us, nobody else,” said David Heyman, a producer on all of the “Harry Potter” films. “That has enabled us to sort of cocoon ourselves in an environment, in a way, that I think is a supportive and a safe one.”

The actors developed strong work ethics, and the filmmakers saw traits in their stars that mirrored those of the characters.

Like Harry, Radcliffe assumed a solicitous leadership role, sort of a goodwill ambassador on set. Like Hermione, Watson was studious, hurling herself into her education. Like Ron Weasley, Grint had a playful humor and the support of a large family.

“You felt people are just kind of waiting for us to fall into that stereotype of, I suppose, child actors,” said Grint, who started on “Potter” at age 11 and turns 23 a month after the final film opens. “But I’ve always been quite busy. Never really had much time to go too crazy. I come from a big family, as well, and that always helps you to know who you are.”

Director David Yates, who made the final four “Harry Potter” films, said he wondered a few years back whether some of his stars might turn into a handful as they reached the rebellious late-teen years.

“Because, they have every right to kind of get angry or frustrated,” Yates said. “They carry a lot of responsibility. They’re under tremendous pressure. They have enormous temptations. The world is at their feet. They get paid enormous amounts of money. But they haven’t gone over the edge, and I think it’s the people around them. I think there’s something ingrained with them. It’s their family.”

Many child actors have trouble landing more adult roles once they outgrow their cute and cuddly phase and can get sidetracked into drugs or alcohol, such as Lohan and others before her, including Danny Bonaduce, Corey Feldman and Macauley Culkin.

So far, the key “Potter” stars have remained focused. Radcliffe has done Broadway with “Equus” and “How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying,” and stars in the upcoming big-screen thriller “The Woman in Black.” Watson is studying at Brown University and has a role in the upcoming Marilyn Monroe drama “My Week With Marilyn.” Grint did a couple of independent movies in between “Potter” films and stars in the upcoming war saga “Comrade.”


Original article found here: htrnews.com| July 10th, 2011

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Rupert Grint

Character: Ron Weasley

Date of Birth: August 14, 1988

First appeared in Harry Potter: aged 12

Estimated fortune: €23m

If Radcliffe plays the flamboyant actor, and Watson the clever clogs, Rupert Grint is without a doubt the laid-back one.

While the other two are more focused and precise, Grint has been more inclined to ride the rollercoaster that is the Harry Potter experience.

He owns a working ice cream van, a hovercraft, a bright orange Range Rover and a Mini fitted with special Lamborghini doors. He once bought a coin-operated fortune-telling machine from a fairground, learnt to ride a unicycle and recently bought two miniature donkeys to go with his miniature pigs.

“I do, kind of, spend a lot,” he says. “And just on stupid things, because I don’t really know what to do. What are you supposed to do? It just seems like way too much. We don’t deserve it, at all, for what we do.”

However, not all his spending has been as frivolous. He has a flat in east London and also owns an estate near his parents Hertfordshire home, said to be worth around £5m.

Grint has the children’s news programme Newsround to thank for his fame.

His dad Nigel, a memorabilia dealer, and his mother Jo filmed him rapping about why he’d be perfect for the role as Potter’s red-headed sidekick after the show aired a casting call in 1999.

He took to life in front of the cameras with ease.

“At that age you’re fearless,” he says. “Nothing bothers you.”

However, as his teenage years progressed, his confidence began to retreat. “There comes an awkward stage when you’re growing up,” he says, “when you’re just really aware of yourself, and quite self-conscious. And I did kind of pull back a little bit.”

“He lived his teenage years under a spotlight,” said Potter producer David Heyman, “but one of the many things I love about Rupert is that he just gets on with it. He enjoys life.”

Nonetheless, of the three lead actors, he has constantly won the praise of critics and co-stars, and was described by John Hurt as the “born actor” of the bunch.

Of the three Potter stars, Grint has the more accomplished acting CV after taking on several leading film roles, including the 2002 British comedy Thunderpants, the 2006 coming-of-age story Driving Lessons and the 2008 thriller Cherrybomb, where he plays a bad boy who stops at nothing to get the girl he covets.

So while Grint may not have matched the earning power of his co-stars so far, his future acting career seems far more bankable.


Original article found here: independent.ie July 9th, 2011

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‘Harry Potter’: Ron Weasley ‘falls in love’ in final film

THE LAST SPELL: “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows — Part 2” closes out a decade of Hogwarts in Hollywood. Hero Complex is counting down to the July 15 release of the final film in the magical franchise with exclusive interviews and photos. Today: Hero Complex contributor Amy Kaufman chats with Rupert Grint, who plays Ron Weasley.

AK: It’s been almost a year since you wrapped the film, right?

RG: It’s almost exactly a year. Yeah, it’s a bit weird. It’s taken me a while to realize it. This film is coming out and the DVD and everything, and when it gradually fades away, then it will kind of hit home that it’s all over.

AK: So what have you been doing for the last year?

RG: Immediately after we finished, I took a few weeks off. It was really a quite exhausting process, because we filmed both films simultaneously. Then I said, “What do I do now?” Then I started another film a couple of months ago, and just finished it. Yeah, so it’s been quite a weird mixture of emotions.

AK: Is the final film a lot darker than previous installments?

RG: It is. It’s quite confusing, because we shot both parts at the same time. One day we’d be doing a scene from “Part 1,” and the next day we’d be doing “Part 2.” It was kind of a straight-out battle. It’s kind of like a war film, because you become these desperate soldiers, and characters are dying, and the castle is collapsing into piles of rubble. My character falls in love, and that’s confirmed in this one. I think it will shock some people with how brutal everything is, with dead students scattered about. It’s quite dark.

AK: You’ve been playing this character for so long. Do you still do anything to prepare?

RG: I’ve been playing the character for so long, 10 years now, that it really does kind of come much more naturally when you have to get back into it. It’s not a lot of time in between. Over the years, we’ve kind of become similar characters really, me and him. It was just a natural thing where it merged. I always felt quite a strong connection to him when I was reading the books. He used to say “wicked” all the time, and that’s my word.

AK: You worked closely with Daniel Radcliffe and Emma Watson. Was it difficult for Emma to juggle her college work from Brown University and her duties on set?

RG: I imagine it was quite hard. She wasn’t here a lot, really. We had to shoot around her, really, because she had commitments for her university. She had a lot of doubles. They made a mask of Emma’s face, a prosthetic for wide shots. She was there for big days and really important scenes and stuff. But I don’t know how she did it, really. It’d be so weird to be in that school environment and then be on set. I couldn’t do it.

AK: If J.K. Rowling wrote another book, where would it go?

RG: I don’t know. It’d be weird, definitely. I can’t see where it would go, really, with the characters. We ended in “Part 2″ when we were 36.

AK: What was it like seeing yourself in your late 30s?

RG: It was really quite terrifying, sitting in the makeup chair and gradually watching your face kind of deteriorate. Initially, we had to reshoot the end. I had a massive fat suit. We had to learn how to move like an older person. We had kids as well. I had this weird Donald Trump kind of hairstyle.

AK: Has saying goodbye to this franchise been as difficult as everyone’s saying it is?

RG: I wasn’t sure how I’d feel, really. I knew it was going to be quite potentially emotional because I was cleaning out my room, which I’d been in for like 10 years. It was my second home, really, and I boxed up toys I’d bought. I wasn’t used to seeing the cast that upset when they said “cut.” It was quite a surreal moment.

AK: Do you think you’ll remain lifelong friends with Emma and Daniel?

RG: I think we’ll stay in touch. We’ve shared this quite unique experience together, and yeah, it’s quite an intense thing when you’re filming, ’cause you’re with each other every day all year.

AK: Have you felt pressure about choosing your post-”Potter” roles?

RG: Not so much really. This last movie just came up, and I was quite game to do something different. It’s just a new challenge. It all kind of made sense. … It’s called “Comrade,” and it’s about a true story set in World War II about two English pilots and three German pilots. They both shoot each other down in the middle of Norway, and they find each other in this old cabin thing, and it’s how our relationship with each other changes. We go into survival mode and put the war aside and we become friends, so it’s quite cool. … It was very different — extremely different. We filmed it in Norway on top of a mountain in crazy weather. It was minus-25 with snow everywhere. It was quite extreme. It was a very different filming experience. … It was a true story. These were real people. World War II always felt like quite an interesting part of history.

AK: It sounds heavy, a departure from your more comedic work.

RG: I’m pretty much kind of up for anything really — anything that’s kind of a bit of an interesting character always appeals to me.

– Amy Kaufman


Original article found here: herocomplex.latimes.com | July 8th, 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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Oscars’ Five Best Moments

This year’s Academy Awards are already just a memory, but Hollywood’s annual glamour fest provided some poignant and funny moments along the way.

Here are some of our favorites from the show:

1. Justin Timberlake and Mila Kunis’s Crackling Delivery
The Friends with Benefits costars were together again, their onscreen chemistry translating to the stage, too. The witty Timberlake cracked Kunis up with his deadpan delivery of several jokes, literally causing her to double over with laughter at one point as they presented awards for animated films.

2. Harry Potter and Twilight Get the Auto-Tune Treatment
Add some clever technological maneuvers, and presto – a serious confrontation between Hermione Granger (Emma Watson) and Ron Weasley (Rupert Grint) during Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1 becomes a hilarious musical created with Auto-Tuned voices. Edward, Bella and a shirtless Jacob – Robert Pattinson, Kristen Stewart and Taylor Lautner – also got the same treatment during a scene from Twilight: Eclipse, jokingly titled “He Doesn’t Own a Shirt.”

3. Christian Bale Chokes Up Paying Tribute to His Wife
Bale has played a gruff, gravelly voiced Batman, a grizzled boxer in his Oscar-winning performance in The Fighter, and myriad of other tough-guy roles. So when he choked up when it came to thanking his wife, Sandra “Sibi,” it was a departure for the towering Brit. “Of course mostly my wonderful wife (pause) ah – I didn’t think I was like this – my wonderful wife who is my mast through the storms of life, I hope I’m likewise to you, darling,” he said from the stage. Judging by her beaming face, it seems he is.

4. Luke Matheny: Big Winner, Big Hair
When he won the Oscar for his Live Action Short Film God of Love – a comedy about a lounge-singing darts champion – Matheny, sporting a huge mass of curly locks, immediately admitted, “I should’ve gotten a hair cut!” His enthusiastic acceptance speech and his shout-out to his mom for helping out on craft services brought some more charm to the proceedings – and loud applause from the audience.

5. Jude Law and Robert Downey Jr.’s Banter
It got physical, with Law putting a hand on Downey’s chest before telling him to “shut up.” His reason? As Law earnestly introduced the nominees for the Visual Effects Oscar, Downey interrupted him to criticize the category – more than once. “If it wasn’t for them, your closest association with a superhero would have been in 2001 when you got busted in a cheap hotel with a woman dressed as Bat Girl,” Law ribbed the Iron Man star. After a brief, stunned pause, Downey Jr. clarified, “First, that cheap hotel room cost $1,250 a night, with a corporate discount. Secondly, it was 2000 and not 2001. And most importantly, she was dressed as Wonder Woman.” Later, Downey Jr. added, “Jude Law no longer has a ride to the after parties if anyone’s interested.” The stone-faced actors, who starred in Sherlock Holmes together, were clearly joking about any disagreement, making the faux rivalry all the more fun.


Original article found here: People.com | February 28th, 2011

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Rupert Grint talks ‘Harry Potter’ award: End of film series is bittersweet

Rupert Grint, Emma Watson and the rest of the Harry Potter cast graced the red carpet of the BAFTA Awards on Sunday to talk with fans, share a moment and pick up an award. The cast was coming to the Royal Opera House in London’s Covent Garden for the Outstanding British Contribution to Cinema in 2011 Award which goes to The Harry Potter Films tonight.

“It’s something we have been doing a lot, says Rupert Grint referencing that the end of the series is near and the cast has been saying their final goodbyes to fans. “We finished filming last year,”

The Harry Potter Series definitely had its share of success spanning over a decade and basically engulfing the young actors teenage years. As the film has grown up with the students of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry so have the actors. Being engrossed in the characters they signed on for years ago, the cast has come to embrace the fans far more than anyone could expect.

“It’s really took me by surprise that how much this film me to me. How not doing it every day will affect my life,” said Rupert Grint.

According to red carpet fans, the cast stayed on the red carpet over two hours signing autographs, taking pictures and pleasing their fans. Who could ask for more? Definitely not Harry Potter’s fans!


Original article found here: The Examiner | February 13th, 2011

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Rupert Grint: Kissing Emma Watson was ‘Slightly Strange’

The ‘Harry Potter’ star says it required five takes to nail down the romantic scene with his longtime co-star for ‘Deathly Hallows Part 2.’

LONDON – Harry Potter star Rupert Grint needed five takes to nail his screen kiss with longtime co-star Emma Watson in the yet-to-be-released final movie of the screen franchise, Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows Part 2.

Speaking on a rainy London night from the red carpet of the Orange British Academy Film awards, Grint, who plays Ron Weasley, said it had been “a sweet moment.”

“It was good, actually. We all knew it was going to happen but it was slightly strange because I’ve known Emma for so long,” he told E! Entertainment.

“There were a few awkward takes but after the fifth one I was OK.”

Grint is expected to join fellow actors Daniel Radcliffe and Emma Watson as well as J.K. Rowling and producer David Heyman to collect the Outstanding British Contribution to Cinema award, which has been awarded to the Harry Potter franchise.

Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows Part 2 will be released in July.


Original article found here: The Hollywood Reporter | February 13th, 2011

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Charlotte Church wealth rises in new “rich list”

Charlotte Church’s music, TV and promotional contracts have seen her wealth soar to £10.3 million, putting her seventh in the new “rich list” dominated by women.

In the same list, Harry Potter star Daniel Radcliffe is the wealthiest British star under 30… Radcliffe is estimated to have pocketed £25 million for the two Deathly Hallows films, the first of which broke five UK box office records on its release this month. The second follows next year.

The 21-year-old heads a trio of Hogwarts stalwarts in the top four of the study.

While, Emma Watson, who plays Hermione Granger, and Rupert Grint, Ron Weasley in the hit movies, filled third and fourth in the Heat magazine research.

Emma, 20, a successful spokesmodel for fashion brand Burberry, is estimated to have earnings in excess of £20.6 million and is the youngest person on the list.

Grint is thought to be worth £19 million but has admitted to splashing his earnings on vehicles including an ice-cream van, Hovercraft, Range Rover, Mini and a Chevy pick-up.

The richest woman is actress Keira Knightley, 25, who takes second place with £30.1 million, topped up by her contract as the face of the fragrance Chanel Coco Mademoiselle.

Cheryl Cole – with her X Factor judge seat and deals with L’Oreal and de Grisogno jewellery – is way ahead of fellow Girls Aloud members. Her estimated worth of £7.9 million saw her ranked 14th.

Erstwhile bandmates Kimberley Walsh and Sarah Harding are joint 26th, thought to have made nearly £3.9 million, with Nadine Coyle at 28 and Nicola Roberts at 29.

Coleen Rooney proves herself as more than a Wag at number 10. Her £9 million income comes from deals with Littlewoods, Argos, Nike and ITV2 as well as fragrance, magazine and book deals.

Female singers do well, with X Factor winner Leona Lewis sixth after her hit single Bleeding Love reached number one in 30 countries.

Heat examined film and TV deals, record sales, product endorsements and private gig income to compile its list.

:: Top 10 of Heat magazine’s rich list 2010 (with their estimated worth in brackets):

1. Daniel Radcliffe, 21 (£45.7 million)

2. Keira Knightley, 25 (£30.1 million)

3. Emma Watson, 20 (£20.6 million)

4. Rupert Grint, 22 (£19 million)

5. Robert Pattinson, 24 (£18.5 million)

6. Leona Lewis, 25 (£12.5 million)

7. Charlotte Church, 24 (10.3 million)

8. Katie Melua, 26 (£10.1 million)

9. Katherine Jenkins, 30 (£9.7 million)

10. Coleen Rooney, 24 (£9.1 million)


Original article found here: Wales Online | November 29th, 2010

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