by Michael Steinkirchner
With “Deathly Hallows Part 2” officially out in theaters, fans are finally saying goodbye to “Harry Potter,” the decade-long film series that brought J.K. Rowling’s novels to life. The closing epilogue sequence will be an emotional farewell for fans and actors alike but for Rupert Grint, who became famous for his portrayal of Ron Weasley, it was a “weird scene to film.”
He is referring of course to the careful combination of make-up and computer effects that — SPOILER ALERT, by the way — ages Harry, Ron, Hermione, Ginny and Draco by a full 19 years. “I mean the images of me still haunt me,” he stated, “It was like this monster/Donald Trump kind of mixture, it was very scary.” Apparently, Grint wasn’t the only one who was a little unsettled by the results.
Along with a receding hairline and a particularly “lovely” goatee, actor Tom Felton was given a muscle suit to wear for the older version of his character, Draco Malfoy. “It was quite cool, I felt quite ripped. I asked if I could borrow it for auditions afterwards but they denied me.” Still, Felton was not entirely satisfied with the outcome; “They were pretty cruel don’t you think? They were supposed to base it on Jason Isaacs! I look like Jason Isaacs’ dad!”
The world was able to catch a glimpse of the artificially aged stars in June of 2010 with the release of set photos taken by one lucky muggle who happened across Kings Cross Station the day the epilogue was filmed – and fan reaction was less than flattering. “They tried a lot of things; it was a long process, just finding that right balance,” said Grint, “We did have to reshoot it.”
To remove the stress of filming on location twice, “Deathly Hallows” director David Yates decided to move the cast to a more secure setting at Leavesden Studios. “The first time we did it, it just went slightly too long,” explained Felton, but fans everywhere can rest easy knowing that the essential epilogue has been done justice. It seems all too fitting that this heart-wrenching scene marks the final “Potter” parting point, not just for audiences everywhere, but for the actors themselves.
“I think with the way it ends, they got the balance right and it’s believable,” said Grint.
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