'Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone' Cast, Then and Now
Few series have had as much of an impact on pop culture as the massively popular "Harry Potter." First published in 1997, "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone" (originally named "Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone" for British audiences) was made into a movie in 2001.
That first movie was just the beginning of the franchise, which made $7.7 billion overall. But besides money, these films brought to life the magic of a world every single millennial child desperately wanted to be part of.
Dive head into some nostalgia, as we remember the most important cast members of the original films, and catch up on where they are now.
Daniel Radcliffe: Then
Harry Potter character: Harry Potter
We all like to imagine Daniel Radcliffe was just a boy who stumbled into fame. But the reality is that "Harry Potter" wasn't his first lead role.
His mother was a casting agent for the BBC, and his father was a literary agent. Through her connections, his mom landed him the role of David Copperfield in a BBC One adaptation and in a film called "The Tailor of Panama."
But it was his dad who helped Radcliffe get the part of Harry Potter since producer David Heyman personally invited him to audition when he was 10 years old. Still, no one can deny that he was perfect for the role, both because of his physical resemblance to the character and because of his talent.
Daniel Radcliffe: Now
Growing up with fame was not easy on Radcliffe, who struggled with alcohol abuse during his teenage years. However, the star has since reportedly sobered up.
Since the last film of the "Harry Potter" franchise in 2011, Radcliffe has focused mostly on independent films and theater. Hey, if you're already a millionaire, why not pursue projects you're passionate about?
The actor has no fear of showing range, working in different genres, from horror films like "The Woman in Black" to romantic comedies like "The Lost City," where he plays the eccentric villain. His latest project includes a biopic about Weird Al Yankovic.
He has won numerous awards for his work in film, television and theater. Overall, we'd say he's thriving.
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Emma Watson: Then
Harry Potter character: Hermione Granger
Unlike Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson's first professional acting role was that of Hermione Granger — the character she is still mostly associated with. But the then-9-year-old knew she wanted to be an actress and played roles in several school plays.
In fact, it was her acting teacher that helped her get in contact with the talent scouts who eventually led her to land the part. No living soul on this planet could claim that she wasn't a perfect Hermione.
Emma Watson: Now
Watson has continued acting in both small and big productions, including "The Perks of Being a Wallflower," the live-action adaptation of "Beauty and the Beast" and "Little Women." In between her projects, she managed to graduate from Brown University with a degree in English literature.
But the famed actress is also known for her activism work, which focuses on women's rights and sustainability. She has been a United Nations Women Goodwill Ambassador since 2014.
Rupert Grint: Then
Harry Potter character: Ron Weasley
Rupert Grint was acting in school plays and his local theater group when he heard there was a casting call for "Harry Potter." As a fan of the books, he sent an audition tape, knowing he looked the part of Harry's goofy yet lovable sidekick.
He was 11 when he started filming the role for which he is best known today.
Rupert Grint: Now
While he hasn't acted in any blockbuster films since the "Harry Potter" franchise, Grint has continued to find work in film and television. He's also successfully crossed over to theater.
He's been part of Apple TV+'s "Servant" since 2019, and most recently appeared in "Knock at the Cabin," an M. Night Shyamalan film.
Maggie Smith: Then
Harry Potter character: Professor McGonagall
Maggie Smith was a big deal decades before being cast as Professor McGonagall. She won the Oscar for Best Actress for the 1969 film, "The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie," her film debut. In 1978, she won her second Oscar for her supporting role in "California Suite."
She's also been nominated for several Tony Awards, earning the prize in 1990. That same year, Queen Elizabeth II named her a Dame for her contribution to the country's arts. Her casting in the "Harry Potter" franchise was a no-brainer, since the project reunited some well-respected and beloved British actors.
Maggie Smith: Now
Not even "Harry Potter" was big enough to limit Maggie Smith. After the films wrapped up, she continued bulldozing her way to the top. She has not stopped working on films or theater, but her most famous role after the magical franchise was in the hit television series, "Downtown Abbey," where she plays the quick-witted Dowager Countess.
She earned three Emmys for this role. While she is well into her 80s now, it doesn't seem like she's planning on stopping any time soon.
Alan Rickman: Then
Harry Potter character: Professor Snape
Like Maggie Smith, Alan Rickman was a big name before he joined the "Harry Potter" cast. His recognition probably earned him the role of the tortured Professor Snape — along with his undeniable talent, of course.
Starting in theater, Rickman made the jump to film in the 1988 film "Die Hard," which is one of his most iconic roles. He also starred in the 1995 adaptation of Jane Austen's "Sense and Sensibility" along with Kate Winslet and Emma Thompson (who would later join the "Harry Potter" franchise as well).
From the beginning of his career, he was known for his immediately recognizable voice, which served him well when bringing Snape to life.
Alan Rickman: Now
Rickman continued acting during and after the "Harry Potter" films. His best-known film from this period is probably "Love Actually," where he plays a husband cheating on Emma Thompson. He also starred as French King Louis XIV in "A Little Chaos" next to Kate Winslet.
Rickman passed away in 2016 from pancreatic cancer.
Robbie Coltrane: Then
Harry Potter character: Rubeus Hagrid
Born Anthony Robert McMillan, this beloved Scottish actor used Robbie Coltrane as a stage name since he was in his 20s. Like other veteran actors on this list, he began his career in the theater and then appeared on television in the 1980s.
Before being cast as the adorable half-giant that helps Harry, Ron and Hermione throughout their adventures, he acted in numerous films, including two James Bond movies: "GoldenEye" (1995) and "The World Is Not Enough" (1999).
Apparently, Coltrane was the first choice for the role of Hagrid. And we all understand exactly why.
Robbie Coltrane: Now
Once the "Harry Potter" franchise wrapped up, Coltrane acted in "Great Expectations" along with fellow cast members Ralph Fiennes and Helena Bonham Carter. He also played parts in Pixar's "Brave" and "Effie Gray."
His last major project was for the 2016 TV mini-series "National Treasure," in which he played the starring role.
Coltrane became ill during the last few years of his life and passed away in October of 2022.
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Tom Felton: Then
Harry Potter character: Draco Malfoy
Like Daniel Radcliffe, Tom Felton already had movie credits under his belt before becoming Harry Potter's secondary arch-nemesis (after Voldemort). He'd previously acted in "The Borrowers" (1997) and "Anna and the King" (1999).
His experience certainly served him, as he masterfully portrayed the spoiled Draco Malfoy that had us all grinding our teeth throughout the first films of the series — an impressive feat for a 13-year-old.
Tom Felton: Now
Felton has continued to have a diverse career that has touched different creative outlets. He's been in several films, the most famous of which is "Rise of the Planet of the Apes" and has also starred in television series. He made his theater debut in 2022.
But Felton also dedicates time to songwriting, releasing five EPs and four singles. He also wrote an autobiographical book about his time playing Malfoy titled "Beyond the Wand: The Magic and Mayhem of Growing Up a Wizard."
Richard Harris: Then
Harry Potter character: Albus Dumbledore
As Harry's most important mentor and protector, Dumbledore couldn't be played by just anyone. Fittingly, the first actor to portray the character was Richard Harris.
Like many of his fellow cast members, the Irish actor began his career in the theater. He did his first movie in 1959 and never retired. Amongst his many film credits, you can find "This Sporting Life" (for which he received an Academy Award nomination), "Camelot," "Gladiator," and "The Count of Monte Cristo."
Richard Harris: Now
Harris died of Hodgkin's disease in 2002. "Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets" was his last film.
The role then went to Michael Gambon for the remainder of the movies, though Harris still has a special spot in the hearts of everyone who grew up with the franchise.