Interview: Emma Watson Talks About 'Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows'

The 'Harry Potter' Actress is Now Grown Up

Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows - Part 2 - World Film Premiere
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Emma Watson began the series as a fresh-faced, wild-haired big screen newcomer. However, after shooting eight films, Watson was thankful for the opportunity but nevertheless ready to move on with life. After shooting the final film, Watson attended Brown University. After graduating in 2014 she returned full-time to acting before announcing a year-long break from acting in February 2016 to engage in human rights work.

However, back in 2010 she took a few weeks off from Brown to promote Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1. In these interview highlights from Warner Bros, Watson spoke about life on the set of Deathly Hallows, kissing her co-stars, and shooting that memorable final Harry Potter scene.

On Deathly Hallows Focusing on Harry, Ron, and Hermione:

You know, it was so nice not having that whole infrastructure of having the castle and the school year. As much as it’s been amazing to work with all the talent, it can become quite stilted having all these kind of like barriers in place. It’s nice for it just to be the three of us and it to be about us and what we can give. I loved that.

On the Creepy Scene in Which Helena Bonham Carter as Bellatrix Lestrange Carves 'Mudblood' on Her Arm:

It was very weirdly affecting to do that scene. It was quite horrible. I think even Helena said to me afterwards, she was like, "I really didn’t enjoy doing that.

I really didn't." She usually gets very into that kind of evil stuff, but I think she felt quite uncomfortable. But actually the mudblood idea wasn't something that was written in the script. It's something that Helena and I came up with. "Well, if she's kind of like just doing a spell on me..." I mean obviously I can make it look like it's painful, but I think it would be really powerful to have something that the audience can physically see.

So the 'mudblood' - we came up with mudblood. We sat there on set designing what Bellatrix’s handwriting would look like for like 40 minutes. We think that's what she would write like. So, yeah, we had a lot of fun with it.

I did one take and David [Yates] let the camera roll for like two minutes and just left me there screaming. When I looked at the edit, I was like, "Wow." I mean fair enough, you can't have two minutes of me screaming. But I was like, "I did that a lot longer than was actually shown!" But, no, I think it was quite disturbing for the crew, which I was pleased about obviously because it showed I was doing a good job. It wasn't a fun day.

On Daniel Radcliffe Calling Her a Fiery Kisser:

[Laughing] So I hear. Journalists keep bringing this up with me and I don't really know what to say. I think for the scene it obviously had to be something that would really disturb Ron, that would make him really jealous and upset so I think the kiss had to be passionate from Hermione’s end. As for whether I myself... They called me an "animal" even I think I read in one interview. I guess I should just take it as a compliment.

What She Said to Daniel After Reading That Quote:

Well, I said to him last night, I was like, "You’ve been telling everyone I pounced on you!" He's like, "I didn’t use those words.

I didn't use those words. I just said..." I’m was like, "Whatever, Dan." It could be [a good thing], that's why I'm taking it like a compliment. He’s said, "No, no! I gave you ten out of ten for kissing." I was like, "All right, as long as it’s positive I guess it's fine."

On Learning to Handle the Media Hype:

It’s experience. I’m 20 years old now and I was nine or ten when I went into my first press conference. You just get used to it. It’s not worth it. It takes too much emotional energy to get upset every time something is written that you don’t want to see. You just have to let it go. I would be a crazy person. [Laughing] Maybe I am a crazy person.

It took me a while to figure that one out, actually. I would be lying if I said I never get upset. I still get upset, but I just don’t care quite so much which is good.

Things still get misquoted all the time. There's so much information out there about me you'd think it would be very easy to check facts.

On Kissing Her Two Co-Stars - Who Are Like Her Brothers:

Yeah, it was horrible! I mean really horrible. I felt incredibly awkward. It was not something I was [looking forward to]. I don’t know, but it looked good. We somehow managed to make it look realistic. I was proud of myself that I managed to power through and be professional.

On That Dance Sequence and Daniel Radcliffe's Dance Skills:

As much as I love Dan, he’s not a naturally-gifted dancer. I think he knows, but it was perfect for the scene. It was meant to look silly and spontaneous. I love to dance.

On Working with Director David Yates:

The thing about working with David Yates is you always hear this word ‘truth’ and finding the truth and it being honest and real. He really hates anything false. He wants it to be from the heart and so I think that made me a better actress. Especially, at the very beginning, I felt I was playing such a character. When I was playing Hermione I could really put on this act and become this kind of like big personality and kind of use that to avoid being as truthful. He just said, "Just do it from here [my heart]. Just forget all that stuff. Just be honest." That’s what I tried to do and I think that made a difference.

On Her Favorite Harry Potter Scene with Rupert Grint as Ron:

There’s the scene where we go off together to get the basilisk fang in Part Two to destroy the Horcrux, and we go off on this adventure together. It’s kind of like a comedy act because it’s the first time you see Hermione and Ron like in tune. We're usually so offbeat. We always are like going to miss each other and we kind of clash. And then in this one scene we’re this real team and it's so funny. We're both so into it. That’s a couple of really comedy moments and I just really enjoyed [them]. Rupert’s a great comedic actor so we had a really good time just really wringing the humor out of everything we could.

On Hermione's Baby Pictures in Deathly Hallows:

They were actually my baby pictures. There’s one with me with my favorite thing. I had this towel with bunny rabbit ears on it and there’s a picture of that. I didn’t know which ones they were going to use. They just asked my dad if they could have some pictures of me when I was a kid and he handed some over. It’s very weird to see those pictures mixed in with these fake parents.

On Finishing Up Filming:

I feel I'm asked this question a million times and it never gets clearer or easier really to answer. It’s hard for me to answer because I don’t know how I really feel about it. I’m still processing it, so to give you an answer is actually quite hard. I have days when I feel relieved and days where I feel very sad. I have days where I'm so excited to have, because this took up my life, my home, all of my time, everything... My life revolved around Harry Potter. That was the focal point of my existence, and it’s exciting now that I have this time and I can accept other things. I know the grass is always greener but there were moments when I was making this when I was like, "God I wish I could go and do that," or something would come up. And now I have time to go and do different things, so it's exciting too. I swing like a pendulum back and forth between all these different emotions.

On Knowing Their Characters So Well and Changing Up the Dialogue When Necessary:

Well, actually, by the end, Dan, Rupert and I were rewriting our dialogue just because I would read something and I would immediately say, "She wouldn’t say that. She wouldn't say that." And, luckily enough, you know having played her for 10 years, Steve Kloves and David trusted in me enough, I guess, to give me the freedom to do that which was nice. I don’t think I’ll ever have that chance again, so it was nice.

Deathly Hallows' Camping Scene Could Draw Comparisons to Twilight:

Oh, I didn't think of that connection. Oh yes, there is that comparison. Oh no... I'm calculating the comparisons that will be made. It used to be comparisons to and now Twilight's sort of stepped into that breach of being compared.

On Continuing to Act Post-Harry Potter:

Oh, definitely, and this film has given me a lot of confidence. I just did a movie called My Week with Marilyn which is a Weinstein production with Eddie Redmayne and Michelle Williams and that went really well. I think I will keep acting. I’d like to make like one movie a year, especially until I’m done with Brown definitely because it’s really hard. It’s really exhausting trying to juggle the two.

Edited by Christopher McKittrick