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Dan Talks Politics, Religion, Equus & More in New Interview
News - Newsflash
Monday, 26 January 2009 13:51

Dan was interviewed regarding his take on the recent American presidential election; religion; Equus on Broadway; Harry Potter; and much more!

You can read a bit of the piece below by clicking the "Read More" button.

That should help you fit in here in New York. Are you ready for the run of Equus to end?
I’m going to be very sad. The Harry Potter films brought me a reputation. And doing Equus in London and now in New York has consolidated that and brought me a certain amount of respect. It will always be my first experience on the stage.

What will be your second? Will it be a musical? I saw you do your satirical dance number at the Gypsy of the Year contest with your chorus line of horses from Equus. It was so charming, especially the Rockettes kickline ending you came up with.
I would like to do a musical. Very much. It’s just a matter of finding the right one.

There is a whole genre of literature that centers on the orphaned. Your first role at nine was David Copperfield. There’s Oliver Twist. Jane Eyre. Faulkner’s Light in August. Almost every superhero. What’s your theory as to why the genre is so enduring since Harry is perhaps the most famous orphan in all of literature?
I suppose it’s because we love the underdog. I saw James Carville talking on television and he said a fantastic thing. It was during the last days of John McCain’s campaign. I got hooked on political coverage during the campaign. I love that Joe Scarborough chap. Do you watch Morning Joe? I quite like him. What is it he says? “American by luck. Southern by the grace of God.” That’s great phrase-making.

But back to Carville and orphans. He said that McCain should come out as the underdog. He said Americans love an underdog, but they hate a loser. And for an orphan, from the earliest, most basic, most primitive part of your life, things have gone against you. Everything we know about how people work and are successful, in the conventional sense, starts with family. So the notion is for that to be taken out of the picture one has to work doubly hard to achieve things. It is odd that almost every role I’ve played has been a kid who comes from a screwed-up family background because I have had such the opposite of that.

You are an only child who attained worldwide fame at a very early age. Fame itself has become a presence in your life. I’m sure you have a love/hate relationship with it. In that sense, did fame become your sibling?
It’s not so much the fame thing as it is the person you are when you are in front of an audience or, well, being interviewed.

So you have become your own sibling?

I guess in a way, yeah because you develop two personas. It’s not even a conscious thing. Something happens. Like when I did Inside the Actor’s Studio. Adrenalin hits you and your mind starts working very, very fast. People always say to me, “Oh, you’re so funny in interviews.” And I go, Well, I’m not really in real life particularly. That’s what fame does to you. You acquire another self.

Have you contacted your co-star in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix—Robert Pattinson—to give him any advice about his own sudden fame because of the Twilight films? He was once quoted as saying that if given a choice between himself and you, that girls would choose you every time.
I don’t have his number, so haven’t spoken to him. But I can safely say that his insisting that girls would choose me over him that they would not. That they do not. He is the much prettier and can be much more charming. And he can do that thing of being sultry and sexy.

One of the main themes of the Harry Potter books is the loss of innocence. Has there been a parallel loss of innocence in your own life as the films made you such a star?

There hasn’t been such a loss of innocence in my own life. There’s nothing more fun than being a 13-year-old kid on a film set. It’s fantastic. But that’s the difference between star systems in America and England. Kids stars in America are treated like stars first and kids second. But in England you’re just treated like a kid. You’re always being told don’t get too big for your boots. That’s why I’ve been able to maintain a relatively level head through it all.

Who are you reading now? I know that you’re a big reader.
I’m being really indulgent at the moment and reading P.G. Wodehouse. Lots of Jeeves and Wooster.