Novembers marks the 15th anniversary of the Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone film, and the movie has aged just as gracefully as its three stars: Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, and Rupert Grint. In celebration of the milestone, Books Editor Cristina Arreola and Associate Web Culture Editor Emma Lord chatted with casting director Janet Hirshenson, the woman responsible for casting the actors who played The Golden Trio.
In this exclusive interview, Hirshenson, a casting veteran with hundreds of credits to her name, spilled on some of the stranger elements of the Harry Potter selection process — like how Daniel Radcliffe was obsessed with WWF and had absolutely no desire to become an actor, or how Emma Watson had a huge crush on Tom Felton, the acting veteran of the bunch. Luckily, Radcliffe changed his mind and Watson (maybe?) grew out of her puppy love, but — as Hirshenson explains — she definitely had her work cut out of her. Not only was she responsible for finding the perfect Harry, Ron, and Hermione, but also for finding an entire cast of preteens who could grow up with the movies.
"Finding all the kids was fun, even the kids who barely had lines," Hirshenson tells Bustle. "I think there was like 12 or 13 kids parts, and only one kid didn't finish out — one of the two ruffians with Malfoy... But everyone else did all [eight] movies."
In the third installment of Bustle's Harry Potter podcast The Girls Who Lived, Hirshenson discusses the casting process in-depth and answers some burning fan questions, like: How involved was J.K. Rowling in the casting process? Why did they decide to use all British actors? And, of course, why on earth did they cast a brown-eyed Harry Potter!? Listen below:
For more information on the casting process of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone and dozens of other films, check out the Kindle version of Janet Hirshenson's book, A Star Is Found, co-written with fellow casting director Jane Jenkins.
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Images: Warner Bros.