Emma Watson and Rupert Grint Open Up on First ‘Harry Potter’ Film

Both actors considered leaving the franchise after the first film's success.

Both actors considered leaving the franchise after the first film’s success.

The first film in the Harry Potter book adaptation series, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, originally released in 2001. At the time, its core cast of Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, and Rupert Grint were still children, 10 to 13 years old. The sheer success of the first film and the massive franchise that followed were undoubtedly intimidating to such young actors, and according to the actors themselves, it was almost too much.

HBO Max recently released Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts, a reunion special bringing the stars of the Potter cast back together for the first time in nearly ten years to mark the anniversary of the first film. In the special, Watson and Grint, who played Hermione Granger and Ron Weasley respectively, discussed what they felt when they realized what they had become a part of.

“You were considering pulling out. I’ve never really spoken to you about that,” Grint said to Watson.

“Yeah. I think I was scared,” Watson replied. “I don’t know if you ever felt like it got to a tipping point where you were like, ‘This is kind of forever now.'”

Later in the special, Tom Felton, who played Draco Malfoy, noted the particular pressures Watson felt in her role. “People definitely forget what she took on and how gracefully she did it,” he said. “Dan and Rupert, they had each other. I had my cronies, whereas Emma was not only younger, she was by herself.”

According to Watson, though, it was ultimately the support from the cast and her fans that kept her in the role for all those years.

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