Wizard role for Rupert
He has spent the best part of the last decade being Harry Potter’s sidekick, but now Rupert Grint is determined to prove that there is life after Hogwarts. He talks to Shereen Lowe.
UNLIKE his famous screen alter-ego, Ron Weasley, Rupert Grint is the epitome of laid-back.
Dressed in a rumpled T-shirt printed with Mozart’s face, Acne jeans and Converses, he grins as he shakes my hand, then ruffles his fingers through his tousled red hair.
“I do get recognised quite often – it’s pretty much every day,” says the 21-year-old. “I think my hair colour stands out. People kinda look at me anyway.
“It’s quite a strange thing, it’s built up gradually. I’m not completely used to it yet, but people are always really nice, so it’s never a problem.”
He is currently promoting his new film, Wild Target, and admits for once it’s nice not to be talking about Harry Potter.
That doesn’t mean he’s not willing to speak of his wizarding days, which have made him and co-stars Daniel Radcliffe and Emma Watson among Hollywood’s highest earners under the age of 25.
Grint – who plays Harry Potter’s trusty sidekick, Ron – has recently finished filming the final scenes for the two-part finale, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.
The schedule has been punishing, but he managed to film Wild Target in a rare break after completing the sixth instalment.
He has also just finished the British drama Cherrybomb, about three teenagers who go on a wild weekend of drinking, shop-lifting and joy-riding.
The action comedy caper, Wild Target, which also stars Bill Nighy, Emily Blunt and Martin Freeman, sees Grint play apprentice hitman Tony.
It’s a complete departure from the Potter films and he admits that was part of the attraction.
“The guns appealed to me quite a bit – it was refreshing, and very unlike Ron. All the action stuff – the car chase too – was really fun,” he says.
“There’s a scene where I also had to assemble a gun blind-folded, so I had to learn how the gun comes apart and put it together again. That’s quite useful, I suppose – if I need to do it again, I could,” he adds, grinning.
Wild Target and Cherrybomb also represented another first for Grint – taking his clothes off.
The actor, who is single, bares all in a love scene in Cherrybomb, and reveals himself to Nighy in Wild Target.
“In Harry Potter, it was just a kiss, really. It was suggestive more than anything. This was a lot more intimate,” he says of the Cherrybomb episode.
“It was quite nervewracking, and being naked in front of Bill is quite embarrassing.
“Thankfully, there weren’t many people on set – just me and him. He didn’t really say very much, but yes, it did feel just a bit uncomfortable for the both of us.”
With the end nigh for Potter, Grint and the rest have been forced to think about life after Hogwarts.
He has already signed on to play ski jumper Eddie “the
MAGIC MOMENTS: Rupert Grint as Ron Weasley with co-stars Daniel Radcliff and Emma Watson in HarryPotterandtheOrderofthePhoenix.
ALL GROWN UP: Rupert Grint, with co-stars Emily Blunt and Bill Nighy, as apprentice hitman Tony in the comedy crime caper WildTarget.