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Daniel Radcliffe Explains Why He Took So Many ‘Weird’ Projects After Harry Potter

Daniel Radcliffe on the Harry Potter 20th anniversary: Return to Hogwarts.
(Image credit: HBO Max)

It’s been over 20 years since moviegoing audiences were first introduced to Daniel Radcliffe. The British actor quickly rose to prominence through his performance as the bespectacled young wizard in the Harry Potter franchise, a role he played until the film series concluded in 2011. Following his stint in the Wizarding World, Radcliffe ventured into new territory, some of which may have surprised his fanbase and the viewing public as a whole. With this, the actor is explaining why he took on so many “weird” projects following his stint as Potter.

Since concluding his tenure in Warner Bros.’ highly successful franchise, Daniel Radcliffe has starred in a number of intriguing productions and played some varied roles in the process. He portrayed a widowed lawyer dealing with a vengeful ghost in The Woman in Black, an arrogant tech magnate in Now You See Me 2 and an FBI agent who goes undercover as a neo-Nazi in Imperium. One may think that Radcliffe is merely trying to find projects that are vastly different from Harry Potter. However, it sounds like he’s just naturally drawn to stuff that’s considered “weird”:

I think one of the best things you can do is get a reputation for being weird, or liking weird things. Because weird sort of begets weird, and as soon as you do something like Horns, the guys who make Swiss Army Man are like, 'Oh, okay, maybe he's into that.' And then people see Swiss Army Man, and they're like, 'Oh, Guns Akimbo.' One thing leads to another and it keeps meaning I get to do random crazy stuff, which I'm always very happy with.

The sentiments he shared with Empire Magazine are definitely understandable. Mainstream movies are definitely great, but a performer can find some truly intriguing material in the world of independent filmmaking, which has made up the bulk of the star’s work in the post-Potter years. And you can’t argue with the results, as the Miracle Workers star has earned strong reviews for his work in productions like the aforementioned Swiss Army Man and Horns

Such projects have probably been refreshing for Daniel Radcliffe following his time as Harry Potter. That’s not to say that he doesn’t appreciate his time working on the big-screen adaptations of J.K. Rowling’s young adult novels, though even Radcliffe admitted he didn’t always feel the coolest while playing the powerful wizard. Thankfully, he does have plenty of affection for those days, based on the “nice things” he shared on the reunion special

And the actor hasn’t completely forsaken the world of blockbuster filmmaking, either. His most recent flick, The Lost City (one of 2022’s new movie releases), places him in a fun and adventurous story, which also stars Sandra Bullock and Channing Tatum. Should many fans get their way, he could have another high-profile role in the form of Marvel’s Wolverine. There are only rumors at the moment, but many (even Bullock) want to see him get the part

At present though, Daniel Radcliffe recently finished his work on one of his biggest projects since Harry Potter: a Weird Al Yankovic biopic. The fan-favorite musician chose Radcliffe for the role and, and it sounds like the two got close while hanging out together on set. It’ll be fun to see what the actor does with his performance, which should be another firmly weird role for him.

Ahead of the biopic’s release, check out his work in The Lost City, which is playing in theaters now.

Erik Swann
Erik Swann

Covering superheroes, sci-fi, comedy, and almost anything else in film and TV. I eat more pizza than the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.