HomeTV and MoviesDaniel Radcliffe is a much better actor than the world is giving him credit for
Daniel Radcliffe is a much better actor than the world is giving him credit for
Daniel Radcliffe’s post-Harry Potter career needs way more kudos and recognition than it’s getting and you bet that I’m going to fight in Radcliffe’s corner for the justice his talent deserves.
I’m ready to start a petition right now: ‘Radcliffe for Oscars 2020’.
My point being, the guy has range and you only have to look at two of his most recent roles to realise that Radcliffe is, frankly, one of the most versatile actors we have.
Honestly, who can play a lad who has two guns bolted to his hands in Guns Akimbo, while also promoting a film in which he plays real-life South African apartheid activist Tim Jenkins, who craftily breaks out of prison using wooden keys in Escape From Pretoria. (Might we add, he has a pretty convincing South African accent to boot.)
Those two roles don’t get much more disparate, but so many people will still believe the kid – okay, the 29-year-old man – is destined to walk the Earth only known for his role in Harry Potter.
Despite the fact Harry Potter never had wands, let alone handguns, bolted to his digits.
And that, dear, loyal, valued reader, is why we demand #JusticeForRadcliffe.
While it’s nice to compare his new roles to The Boy Who Lived – a character that definitely catapulted Radcliffe to superstardom, and into the hearts and minds of generations, including me – it’s such a disservice to continue to paint his forehead with a lightning bolt because we can’t see just how much of a boss he is away from the (still brilliant) works of JK Rowling.
The man has spoken in the past about only choosing roles that, in the words of Marie Kondo, ‘spark joy’, rather than out of desperation to pay the bills, having been blessed with a bulging bank account at a very young age thanks to his Harry Potter role ($110million [£85m], if you believe the estimates).
‘My entire life and career is built on luck and privilege,’ he said in an interview with HuffPo.
He added: ‘I definitely don’t want people to think I got anywhere because I just worked really hard.
‘Anyone who’s successful in anything, for the most part – even if you did work really hard, which I’m sure people did – there’s still a massive amount of luck involved.’
It’s kind of refreshing to hear a megastar say the fact they were in the right place at the right time was a catalyst for their superstardom and millions of dollars, non?
Away from our own envy, what this means it that we’ve been able to experience and enjoy Radcliffe in some of the most bizarre roles ever. And that’s something he doesn’t seem to be taking for granted.
Like, 10 years ago, would you ever have anticipated seeing Radcliffe as video game developer Miles who comes up against Ready Or Not’s Samara Weaving in a race against time and death – with the main man donning monster slippers as he races through a city with flippin’ guns for hands?
Guns Akimbo is some kind of absurdist BS that will absolutely work.
What makes Radcliffe so brilliant is he’s able to reference his time as Potter with a kind of enlightened nostalgia and appreciation seeing as he’s been able to spread his wings creatively.
Radcliffe’s IMDB is a journey through varied, and most of the time baffling, roles that he’s taken on over the years, from an angel in the series Miracle Workers, to the real life story of adventurer Yossi Ghinsberg in 2017’s Jungle.
You only have to remember his turn in 2016’s Swiss Army Man, as a corpse who is transformed into a speedboat, propelled by his farts.
If you haven’t seen it, I highly recommend it.
And remember that pretty much perfect moment he starred in The Dog Walker, the film within a film in Amy Schumer’s 2015 Trainwreck?
There’s no other way to describe that than with a chef’s kiss.
Oh, he also acts on the stage, having landed a role in play Endgame. So, suppose that’s another string to the bow.
The point I’m trying to make is that if we continue to pigeonhole the likes of Radcliffe – and his fellow child actor contemporaries, for that matter – we’ll never appreciate their evolution.
It’s the great joy of Radcliffe’s career that he has deliberately moved away from roles that tie him to Potter – even confirming we likely won’t be seeing him make a return to any future sequels.
Good. Don’t do it. There’s too many out there already. Save yourself.
While it’s almost guaranteed he’d make buckets of money should he don that invisibility cloak for one more spin around Hogwarts, I respect him for pushing boundaries and trying new things with his craft.
And, look, sure, money helps in making choices that merely ‘spark joy’ and Radcliffe even recognised the ‘selfish’ aspect of being able to do that.
But when actors care so much about their brand, it’s so ruddy refreshing to see Radcliffe push the envelope, try new things, enjoy the position they’re in, when child stars can so easily go to the other direction.
He’s a man evidently having a lot of fun in an industry that can, at times, take itself way too seriously.
And for that, I clap my pistol hands in celebration.