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'Harry Potter' director David Yates looks back at the spellbinding films

Director David Yates with Rupert Grint, Emma Watson

Director David Yates with Rupert Grint, Emma Watson and Daniel Radcliffe Photo Credit: Handout

“Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1,” the latest entry in the small, word-of-mouth sensation known as the “Harry Potter” series, opens Friday. You might have heard of it.

amNewYork spoke with director David Yates (who also directed the fifth and sixth installments) about the blockbuster.

Why was the decision to divide the book the right one?
First off, I wanted to make two films that felt very slightly different to each other. The first movie is an edgy road movie. There’s sort of poignancy to it, a melancholy. … The second movie called to make, which exists in that book, much more of a story that goes back to the fantasy roots.

What gives “Part 1” its edge?
There’s something about Dan [Radcliffe], Rupert [Grint] and Emma [Watson] [when] you take them out of that safety zone [of Hogwarts] and you put them in a place that feels quite personal and odd and real, I think something interesting happens.

How have Dan, Rupert and Emma grown over the years you’ve worked with them?
I’m hugely proud of them for multiple reasons. I think their acting is getting better all the time ... and we’re giving them more interesting things to do … and they’re stepping up to that plate. … Most importantly, I believe in them incredibly strongly and I think that’s going to continue to get better as they get older.

How do you feel about the series coming to a close?
It’ll be a big relief when it’s all done, because it’s such a lot of work, but it will be quite sad, too.


What's next for the magical actors:
• Harry Potter: Daniel Radcliffe, 21, stars in the film “The Woman in Black” and is set to play the late British photographer Dan Eldon in “The Journey Is the Destination.”

• Ron Weasley: Rupert Grint, 22, is to play ski jumper Eddie “The Eagle” Edwards in the upcoming “Eddie the Eagle.”

• Hermione Granger: Emma Watson, 20, is attending Brown University, modeling for Burberry and acting in the upcoming Marilyn Monroe drama “My Week With Marilyn.”


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