For 10 years, Josh Herdman played the snarling Slytherin bully Gregory Goyle -- loyal minion of Draco Malfoy and one-half of the doltish duo Crabbe and Goyle -- in the Harry Potter movies. These days, the 28-year-old hasn’t lost his flair for intimidation, but he’s now using his fists to fight opponents who (it must be said) are way, way more threatening than little Ronald Weasley.
Herdman made his debut as an MMA fighter in London over the weekend, where he beat his opponent, Poland’s Janusz Walachowski, after three rounds. Speaking to On The Road With Addicted MMA, the amateur cage fighter said his fighting career is a long time coming.
“I’ve been training traditional Japanese jujitsu for nearly five years and hold a shodan black belt," he said. “It’s raw, exciting and unpredictable. I find it more interesting than boxing although I appreciate the beauty and art in boxing. It also made sense to move onto MMA because of my jujitsu training.”
After appearing in all eight of the Harry Potter films between 2001 and 2011, Herdman has only appeared in a small handful of TV and film roles. But he insists he still wants to balance his love of acting with his love for fighting.
“I haven’t fallen out of love with [acting], I still have an agent and still go for auditions. It’s just a little bit like playing the lottery for a living,” he said. “I don’t see it so much as a career change, I am passionate about both acting and fighting.”
Sure, Matthew Lewis has gotten the bulk of praise for transforming from geeky Neville Longbottom into a class-A hunk, but we can all agree Herdman’s impressive transformation deserves some attention too, right?!