Macdonald will be playing the Ravenclaw house ghost, the Grey Lady. Harry Potter’s search for Horcruxes that started in “Half-Blood Prince” and continued through “Deathly Hallows: Part 1” will inevitably bring the boy wizard back to Hogwarts in “Part 2,” and that’s where the Grey Lady, real name Helena Ravenclaw, comes in to play. Not to give too much away, but she has some information that will help Harry, Ron and Hermione on their quest.
Considering the tragic trajectory of Macdonald’s “Boardwalk Empire” character this past season and the doe-eyed innocents she played in “No Country for Old Men” and “Trainspotting, Macdonald is the perfect choice for Helena Ravenclaw. The daughter of Hogwarts founder Rowena Ravenclaw, Helena was killed by the man Bloody Baron, a man who loved her even though she didn’t love him back. The Baron then killed himself out of regret, and now they both haunt the halls of Hogwarts together. I personally am glad that Jo Rowling waited to tell this depressing Hogwarts story until the final “Potter” book, and started us off with the funny story of why Nick is Nearly-Headless.
The Grey Lady made her only other film appearance in “Sorcerer’s Stone,” where she was played by Nina Young, best known for her recent appearance as Hera in “Clash of the Titans.” But the Grey Lady in the films was always just a nod to the Hogwarts ghosts as they were described in the books, and didn’t serve any purpose to the plot. Then again, like most of Rowling’s characters, none of us had any idea how important the Grey Lady would be until she was revealed as an important information keeper.
During the interview with Vanity Fair, Macdonald mentioned that she was filming her role at that time (which, of course, will be CGI because she’s a ghost!), and revealed that her friend Colin Firth is pretty jealous of her involvement with the series. “I’m friends with Colin Firth, and he told me he’s the only Brit who’s not in it,” she said. Silly Colin, he should have started complaining about it earlier and then he might have gotten a role just like Bill Nighy did! Maybe he could play the Bloody Baron?
Are you glad to see Macdonald as the Grey Lady? Do you wish Firth had gotten a role in the series?