News

Daniel Radcliffe talks about life post-‘Potter’

Daniel Radcliffe talks about life post-‘Potter’

FAR CRY FROM 'HARRY POTTER:' This Aug. 4 photo shows actor Daniel Radcliffe at a screening of "What If" in New York. Radcliffe’s comedy is due in theatres on Friday. Photo: Associated Press/Andy Kropa

By Piya Sinha-Roy

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – From boy wizard Harry Potter to Beat poet Allen Ginsberg, actor Daniel Radcliffe has taken on a wide range of fantasy and period roles, but he finally steps into the real world with his latest film.

In the romantic comedy “What If,” out in U.S. theaters on Friday, Radcliffe plays Wallace, a young man damaged by previous romances who becomes enamored with a girl already in a steady relationship.

The 25-year-old British actor talked to Reuters about leaving “Potter” behind and proving his critics wrong.

Q: You have taken on action, fantasy and horror, but never a romantic comedy. What drew you to “What If”?

A: I had never done a contemporary project that was set in the world we are in that we recognize, I’ve never done that. “Potter” was in its own fantasy world and everything else I’ve done has been period films, so I’ve wanted to play somebody contemporary for a long time.

Q: What did playing Wallace allow you to explore?

A: This is the first time I’ve ever played a character that’s quite close to myself, not in terms of the decisions he makes or the way he goes about things, but just in terms of his sense of humor and his speed of thought.

I used to worry that playing myself, or that not playing somebody that different from myself, would make people think of “Harry Potter.” And then I realized I hadn’t been playing myself at all in “Harry Potter.” I was playing a very different, much sterner character than I am myself. So I think I let a bit of that embarrassment go, and it definitely made it easier.

Q: You received criticism for your on-screen performances early in your Potter career. Did that fuel your determination?

A: Yeah, prove everyone wrong. Anyone who ever said I couldn’t do it – and this does sound terrible – but I do want every film to be a “fuck you” to them. If you say horrible shit about a 12-year-old boy, then yeah, I want to make you pay for that, I want to embarrass you by my success. Like, that’s what I do. (laughs) … I’m not somebody who makes a fuss about stuff or gets particularly angry ever, but I do have a mean competitive streak, which I suppose that’s how it comes out. That and table tennis.

Q: What genre would you like to take on?

A: I’ve always thought sci-fi looks really fun, just because of the set. And if it’s a good sci-fi movie, a clever sci-fi movie, with an interesting take on the future, then God yeah, I’d be up for that. I would just like to be on a spaceship set.

Q: How do you deal with the celebrity spotlight?

A: You don’t. The only way to navigate it sanely is to pay as little attention to it as possible. … It’s weird that people take photographs of you, it’s weird that anyone would care that you went to the shops. They always have to write some headline, like “Daniel Radcliffe and girlfriend go for a stroll to the shops,” because that makes a story. Because otherwise it’s just some … creep taking photographs of you on the street, and if there isn’t a headline, that’s all it amounts to.

Q: You’ve been acting for 15 years now. Would you ever step away from it all?

A: There’s a chance, but I love what I do so much that I don’t think I could ever imagine doing anything else. I can’t imagine if somebody told me tomorrow, “You’re never going to be stepping on a film set again.” I genuinely don’t know what I’d do. I couldn’t imagine my life without it.

(Editing by Mary Milliken and Leslie Adler)

Recent Headlines

in Local Sports

Pats CB Browner “not friends” with Sherman & Thomas during SB week

Fresh
brandon browner and tom brady from twitter

Pats cornerback Brandon Browner discussed his relationship with the Legion of Boom.

in Local Sports

Former Husky & NFL QB Millen discusses “Deflate-gate”

Fresh
Former NFL quarterback Hugh Millen holds a football at Baden Sports headquarters in Renton, Wash., Thursday, Jan. 22, 2015. Millen says many quarterbacks prefer footballs with less air because of better grip and faster throws.

Former Husky and NFL quarterback Hugh Millen knows a thing or two about football... He helps design them for Baden.

in Local

City Hall celebrates 75th anniversary

Fresh
Photo provided by City of Bellingham

Built in 1939 with New Deal funding

in Local

It’s almost ‘Junuary’ in Whatcom County

Fresh
sun

Record 59 degrees in Bellingham on Sunday

in Local Sports

UW’s Robert Upshaw has been dismissed from the program

Fresh
tulanewashington

The 7-foot transfer from Fresno State was averaging 10.9 points and 8.2 rebounds per game in nearly 25 minutes a contest for the Huskies