Rupert Grint and Ron Weasley were two halves of one whole, but no longer. Seven years after the last Harry Potter movie was released, and just after turning 30, Rupert Grint is more than ready to move on from the loveable literary character that made him a global star.
Grint was just 11 years old when he landed the iconic role of Ron Weasley, Harry Potter's goofy and supportive best friend. When Harry Potter and the Sorcerers' Stone was released in 2001, it became the highest grossing movie of the year and the stars become household names.
Still, Grint, who had no previous or professional acting experience before the films, didn't quite understand the hype. Or believe the film series would prove as popular as it still is today. He was thrust into the spotlight and was one of the most famous teenagers on the planet through the early 2000s.
He would forever be synonymous with Ron. Seven years out, Grint has taken some time to be just Rupert. His post-Potter films weren't exactly successful so he took a break from it all. Now he's back with a new role in the BBC series Snatch. He plays a man from a wealthy family who gets caught up in a world of crime. It's a different direction from being a boy wizard.
Grint repeatedly used the word "weird" to describe his time making the Harry Potter series while he came of age and became famous worldwide. He opened up about his evolution from a somewhat reluctant child star to a private adult in an in-depth interview with the UK Independent.
He recalled how starring in the eight Harry Potter film took away a normal childhood. He said, "We were always with adults, absorbing their sense of humour, their references. I always remember, the few times I did go back to school to do exams, I felt a real detachment from my peers."
Of course, he did have on-set peers with Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, and a whole cast of young actors, but it was a job, not a school. Adults far outnumbered all of the children.
After the fourth film, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Grint considered leaving the magical world behind for a normal life. Lucky for all of us, he decided to persevere and continue the series. As fans, we're grateful because we can't imagine anyone else playing scared-yet-brave and loyal Ron Weasely.
Still, for Grint, it was hard to differentiate between the two. He grew up playing Ron and may as well have grown up being Ron too. When the movies ended, Grint was lost about what he should do next. Grint didn't have as much as a direction. His much-needed break from acting gave him a chance to see what he wanted. He also learned who Rupert was.
Are you a fan of the Harry Potter books or movies? Who was your favorite character? Let us know in the comments!