In addition to DR.co.uk's chat with Daniel Radcliffe about the Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows split point (which can be found here), Dan answered a few questions from other websites, including about the seven Potters, Harry's faith in Dumbledore, the possibility of him being part of a Potter musical, and much more.
What was it like playing the other characters for the Seven Potter scene?
Daniel Radcliffe: Oh, it was bizarre; some were easier than others to kind of impersonate. The actor Andy, who played Mundungus, was kind of the easiest because Andy has a very, kind of a idiosyncratic walk and way about him. He was easy to imitate. But you know, Rupert was very difficult, because Rupert's got a - you know, his walk - you wouldn’t expect that about Rupert. When you actually analyze it, Rupert’s got a real wiggle in the hips when he walks. That was slightly unexpected. He was one of the slightly tricky ones. But it was great fun And I think it’s going to be a very funny, good scene as well because normally if you see split screen stuff in films it’s often the case that you can see the join, as it were. Where one actor is more apt to playing two on screen at the same time, they don’t really cross over into each other’s space very often. Whereas in this scene, the way we did it was very, very clever and rather brilliant so that we can have everything overlapping. Obviously it’s an actor’s dream – there are seven of me on screen at one time. It’s fantastic!
How was it playing Hermione?
Dan: That was fun. The girls were very, very funny. I think the crew were slightly worried that I was walking around a little too confidently in those heels of Fleur’s. But it was very good fun.
Which film was your favorite hair look?
Dan: I would probably say either the third film or the last one – these ones we’ve just finished. I think those are the two in which we’ve got the hair most right. To be honest, my favorite time I ever look is when I’m covered in mud and blood and sweat. I think that’s how I look best. It’s obviously hard to achieve that look in day-to-day life, but still it’s certainly I think how I look strongest. With those kinds of scenes also it’s weirdly helpful. It does actually help you get into the character and get into the scene if you are covered in all that stuff. It’s actually very helpful in terms of helping your performance.
What would your reaction be to doing something like Harry Potter the musical for stage?
Dan: My reaction would be pretty negative. Harry Potter is a book then our films, you know? I mean, hey, a radio play could work. I don’t know how it would be done on musical. I’m ready to be proved wrong, but I think it’s a bit of a long shot. In my opinion, it’s not the kind of film that would make a good musical. I don’t think it lends itself to those things. To be perfectly honest with you, I just don’t think it would work and I don’t think I would be a big fan of that idea.
What was the most challenging thing to film physically and emotionally [in Deathly Hallows]?
Dan: Physically? Well, underwater stuff is always pretty tricky. In this case it was particularly tricky because it’s a big fight scene. I’m going under into the frozen lake to get the sword of Gryffindor and obviously the horcrux is fighting for its existence and is trying to kill me. We do what will hopefully be a pretty terrifying almost semi-homage to The Omen where I get dragged up against the ice and toyed around by the locket. So that was pretty challenging. Emotionally? All the stuff early on in the film in the first part with Rupert. It’s very, very hard, as I’m sure you all know, to hate Rupert Grint – even in performance. So that was a challenge, but hopefully some really, really good scenes will have come out of it. Also, all the scenes in Godric’s Hollow where Harry sees his parents’ tombstone. They were obviously big emotional moments. Harry being such a battle hardened, almost desensitized person at this stage. He’s dealing with emotions that he doesn’t know how to show because he’s buried emotions for so long. That’s how he’s managed to survive and keep his sanity. By ignoring, a lot of the time to the back of his mind, his tragic past and how he feels about it. So to mind the natural grief one would feel at that moment with the stoicism that Harry has developed over the last years – that was a challenge, but one I thoroughly enjoyed.
Part 1 is more of a road movie. Was it a really different experience playing Harry?
Dan: Absolutely. It’s a very different film. It’s bizarre, in a way. I don’t think we were aware how different it was at the time of filming. At the time we were just doing scenes like we’d do any other scenes. We weren’t really thinking about how different it was going to eventually seem. But then when I saw the trailer and saw the extra footage I’ve seen, it just struck me how very different it’s going to be because we’ve never seen these characters in this different context before. I think it’s one of the things that makes the first film so exciting. You see these characters stripped of their comfortable safe surroundings, and suddenly just out in the wilderness together. The first one, as well as being that road movie, because they’re all overexposed and it’s such a different situation, you learn a lot more about how those characters function in that situation. It’s a real exploration of the relationships between them and the flaws – particularly Harry and Ron, because Hermione as always is the voice of reason. Harry and Ron do fall apart to some degree. It’s a very different feel to it. I think, hopefully, people will be very excited by that.
For people who haven’t read the book, do you think the fan’s reaction will turn in the first half of the movie against Dumbledore because of Rita’s book?
Dan: I hope so. That’s the intention. That, for me, is what the first film is about. It’s about faith. It’s about how far can one’s faith be tested before you give in entirely. Harry’s a Job figure in the book in the first part. He hears so much about Dumbledore that is less than esteemable. He starts to really question why he’s going on this insane, demanding mission, which is costing him his friends and potentially will cost his life - for somebody he starts to question the values of. Hopefully at the end of the first film people should be very much wondering, “Well, what was Dumbledore’s real agenda?” They should question it because that is ultimately what we want them to do. I also think, while I’m on the topic of talking about faith is also about as Harry loses faith in Dumbledore and starts to fall apart, so Ron and Hermione lose faith in Harry. Harry becomes … I was also comparing him to a Roman Emperor in the last days of the empire just getting paranoid, isolated and puffing himself up. I always felt with Harry there is an element of a martyr complex in him. He doesn’t want to reach out for help. He wants to be the sacrifice. He wants to do it alone. There’s a pride/arrogance, which means he won’t always reach out to other people. When, if fact, he should. When, in fact, he’s actually endangering his own chances of succeeding in this mission and, therefore, the chances of saving the good of the magical world by not asking for help and not accepting help.
Now that it’s all over have you kept any mementos from the series?
Dan: I’ve got two pairs of glasses. One from the seventh film which were lensless because we use two sets of glasses on films: lensed and lensless. We use lensless for camera reflections and things like that. And also I have a lensed pair from the first film, which are just these tiny little things now that a boy I used to know used to wear. It’s very sweet and they both have pride of place in my home. And actually I’m probably going to get broken into now that I’ve told you that. That was the only thing that I wanted. I didn’t want the wand. I clearly didn’t want the broom. Those were the only thing I had my heart set on.
If you had to choose to take the journey that Harry takes in the movie in real life, would you and why?
Dan: I think I would if I had the same responsibility that Harry had, I’d like to think that I would be as selfless and as brave as he could be. I think we all would like to think that. And recognize the importance of what he had to do for the good of all of those people that he loves and the people he has to help protect. So, yes, I think I would. Although I don’t think any of us are as brave as Harry.