'Harry Potter' Actor Matthew Lewis Wants a Neville Longbottom Spin-Off & Here's What It Should Include
Breathe easy, Harry Potter fans: you're about to be in for an exciting day. In a Radio Times interview posted on Sunday, the Muggle known as Matthew Lewis revealed that he'd be interested in doing a Neville Longbottom spin-off, if the opportunity arose. Said the actor, "I’d probably jump at the chance, absolutely." Cue screaming fans, a jealous Tom Felton, and a J.K. Rowling who's probably thinking "oh, crap."
While Lewis' comments were purely hypothetical — no such spin-off has been offered to him, at least not yet — there's reason to think it'd be a brilliant idea. Neville is one of the most-loved Harry Potter characters, with a backstory that's interesting, not to mention extremely different from Harry's. A spin-off, if done well, wouldn't be a regurgitation of Harry Potter, but an entirely new, Better Call Saul -esque version of the wizarding world with the potential for compelling storylines and an expansion of Rowling's beloved universe.
And fans would love it. Getting to explore the mostly-untold story of one of Potter's most fascinating (and underrated) characters would be wonderful, as would getting to see puberty champion Matthew Lewis on-screen again. If Rowling and Warner Bros. are as excited about this opportunity as I am, here's what I hope it includes:
Plenty of Flashbacks
Unfortunately, we Muggles (and probably not wizards, either) don't have the ability to transform into younger versions of ourselves. We do, however, have CGI. Through the magic of computers, I want to know what Neville was thinking when he was sorted into Gryffindor, how it felt to be in a Full-Body Bind Curse, what life growing up a near-orphan with his strict, fiery grandma was truly like. Mostly, though, I just want to see a grade school-age Neville getting dropped head-first out a window by his uncle in order to find out if he had magical powers.
His Relationship With His Parents
Through Harry's perspective, we got glimpses of Neville's life without his parents — his visits to St. Mungo's, his fear and hatred of Bellatrix, his need to be the wizard his grandma, and his parents, had always wanted him to become. Yet there's so much still unexplored, from what it was really like to see his parents in a ward for the insane to what, if anything, he remembers about them before they were injured. Like Harry, Neville was raised by a relative other than his parents, but the two stories are as different — and compelling — as can be.
His Friendship With Ginny
Although it was never given much fanfare, both the movies and books made clear that Ginny and Neville shared a deep friendship. The duo were both kind-hearted, caring people who likely bonded over being ignored by their friends, and I imagine their relationship lasted long after their years at Hogwarts. As adults, do they do lunch dates? Do their children hang out? Does Ginny confide in Neville that she's resentful Harry named their kid "Albus Severus?" There's just so much I need to know.
All of Year Seven
So much happened in Year Seven of Hogwarts that we don't know about because Harry, Ron and Hermione were off finding Horcruxes and being all moody. The Carrows took over! Students were tortured! Dumbledore's Army re-formed! Neville was at the center of all of this, and getting to hear his recounting of what happened that fateful year would be amazing. In particular...
What It Felt Like to Pull Gryffindor's Sword Out of The Sorting Hat
The biggest Neville moment of the series was when he pulled the sword of Gryffindor out of the Sorting Hat during the Battle of Hogwarts. It allowed him to kill Nagini (destroying a Horcrux), but more importantly to his character, it proved that Neville, despite his nerves and once-weak disposition, was a true Gryffindor. It must've been a huge moment for him, and I'd love to know what he was thinking upon finding out he was a wizard as strong as strong as his parents and friends.
Working an an Auror
It was only a short-lived career, but Neville's time as an Auror following the war must've been an incredible experience. What villains did he come up against? Were Ron and Harry good co-workers? How did he handle the "stealth" portion of the training? (Probably not well.) I need answers, people!
Teaching at Hogwarts
Now this is the good stuff. Neville as a Herbology professor would be full of fun material, from his interactions with students to his fights with angry plants to his long-lasting inability to remember the passwords to his living quarters.
Marrying Hannah Abbott
In the movie, Neville's implied to end up with Luna, but according to Rowling, his future wife is none other than classmate Hannah Abbott. While it'd certainly be more fun to see Neville's marriage to Luna (could you imagine?!), I'm going to go by Rowling's word and pair Neville up with Hannah. The two live above the Leaky Cauldron, never had kids, and according to Rita Skeeter, enjoy more than their fair share of Firewhisky. It's not life with Luna, but it could still be be very, very good.
Images: Warner Bros. (5)