15 Actors Who Were Almost The Perfect Casting In "Harry Potter"

Many factors into casting for major roles in big franchises like Harry Potter, including their faithfulness to the character. Is there anyone else that is more Harry Potter than Daniel Radcliffe, or Hermione other than Emma Watson?
But often than not, the final casting choice is not whom the producer has in mind for the part. The roles in Harry Potter are picked and re-picked again and again until the filmmaker finds their perfect cast. And even then, replacements can still happen at the last minute.
That means, while the person you see playing your favorite character is a perfect embodiment of the character, there’s a litany of other casting choices. Some of them are even just as perfect as the final casting in the movie.
Through careful searching, we find out the actors that were inches away from the final calls. So, do you think these casting choices are better than the filmmakers?

#1 Liam Aiken — Harry Potter

Source: © Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix / Warner Bros. and co-producers© liampadraic / Instagram

Originally, Liam Aiken was set to play the boy who lived on the big screen. Once again, J.K. Rowling spoke up, and the rest is history. She insisted that the whole cast of the film be made up of British actors. This immediately took Aiken out of the race, making way for Daniel Radcliffe.
J.K. Rowling contacted producer Chris Columbus to ensure that Aiken would not be cast as Harry Potter. It's questionable if Aiken had given a greater performance than Radcliffe, who did an excellent job with the part.

#2 Hatty Jones — Hermione Granger

Source: © Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone / Warner Bros. and co producers© Madeline / Jaffilms and co-producers

Producers struggled to choose between two young actresses who were equally suited to play Hogwarts' smartest witch, Hermione Granger. It came between Hatty Jones, star of the feature film Madeline, and Emma Watson, who was unknown.
Emma's made a big impression on casting director Janet Hirshenson. And this influenced the choice. She thought Emma would provide a much-needed "dullness" to the narrative. It's difficult to picture another actress playing Hermione now.

#3 Thomas Brodie-Sangster — Ron Weasley

Source: © Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone / Warner Bros. and co-producers© Nanny McPhee / Universal Pictures and co-producers

Thomas Brodie-Sangster stated that he would have been delighted to portray Ron Weasley in the franchise.
That is not all-talks; the young actor really auditioned and ended up losing the role to Rupert Grint. Despite failing his audition, the Nanny McPhee actor stated that his first "difficult" rejection in the Entertainment industry "enabled him to keep a more 'optimistic' mindset during audition rounds for subsequent jobs.

#4 Tom Felton — Ron Weasley and Harry Potter

Source: © Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone / Warner Bros. and co-producers

It may be difficult to believe, but it is true. Tom Felton tried out for the roles of Ron Weasley and even Harry Potter before landing the role of their nemesis Draco Malfoy.
Despite failing either part, there was no bad blood between him and Radcliffe or Grint behind the scenes. On the contrary, Tom felt glad for the opportunity to act in films at all. And, as Felton stated, the decisions appear to have been ideal, since each of the performers has become a legend thanks to their respective roles.

#5 Ian McKellen — Albus Dumbledore

Source: © Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix / Warner Bros. and co-producers© IanMcKellen / Twitter

In 2002, Sir Ian McKellen turned down the role of Albus Dumbledore when he was offered it. After the death of Richard Harris, the then-Dumbledore actor, during filming, the role goes to him next. McKellen is well-known for his outstanding performances in blockbusters like The Lord of the Rings and The Da Vinci Code.
This all started when Richard Harris said that Ian McKellen lacked the passion for acting and skills for it. Michael Gambon finally got the part, because McKellen couldn't work with someone he didn't like.

#5 Robin Williams — Rubeus Hagrid

Source: © Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets / Warner Bros. and co-producers© Jumanji / TriStar Pictures and co-producers

Once again, J. K. Rowling was very adamant when it came to not using American actors in her franchise. Being British herself, she put enormous pressure on the production team so her book will be faithfully adapted. In the end, she got it her way: the cast ended up being purely British.
Robbie Coltrane performed the beloved Hagrid with tremendous perfection. Williams, like Coltrane, would have done an excellent job as well!

#6 Saoirse Ronan — Luna Lovegood

Source: © Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix / Warner Bros. and co-producers© Little Women / Columbia Pictures and co producers

Evanna Lynch played Luna Lovegood in the Harry Potter film series. J.K. Rowling herself picked Evanna to play Luna. Saoirse Ronan auditioned for the part, but she did not receive the same amount of attention from J.K. Rowling as Evanna Lynch.
Saoirse once stated that she was sad when she realized she didn’t get the part. She claims she was too young for the role at the time. With more than three Oscar nominations under her belt now, we wonder what Saoirse’s Luna would bring to the entire franchise.

#8 Jamie Campbell Bower — Tom Riddle

Source: © Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince / Warner Bros.and co-producer© bowerjamie / Instagram

Jamie Campbell Bower auditioned for the role of the young Tom Riddle (Lord Voldemort) in the sixth film in the Harry Potter franchise. He was ultimately passed up for the role, although the reasons for his rejection are unknown. As you may know, Frank Dillane was given the part.
Likely a Potterhead, the well-known actor participated in films based on J.K. Rowling's novel. Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, a prequel spin-off for the Harry Potter franchise. He portrayed Gellert Grindelwald in both Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 and Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald.

#9 Eddie Redmayne — Tom Riddle


Jamie Campbell Bower was not the only actor interested in playing Harry Potter's mortal enemy, Lord Voldemort. Eddie Redmayne, like Campbell Bower, did not get the role of the nose-less villain.
During an interview, Eddie revealed that he didn't receive any feedback after his audition. Finally, Christian Coulson played Tom Riddle in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets. His perseverance was rewarded when he was cast in the Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them trilogy as the lead character, Newt Scamander.

#10 Tilda Swinton — Sybill Trelawney

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Oscar-winner Emma Thompson played the quirky Divination Professor Sybill Trelawney. However, before the producers and Thompson reached an agreement, the role was offered to fellow Golden Globe winner Tilda Swinton, who declined it.
While Swinton's decision appears unusual, she simply didn't want to be a part of a series idealizing boarding school life. We're not sure if Swinton was right to decline the job, but one thing we can all agree on is that Emma Thompson was as excellent as Swinton would have been.

#11 Jason Isaacs — Gilderoy Lockhart

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Jason Isaacs, best known as Lucius Malfoy, originally planned to play an entirely different character: the glory-stealing half-blood wizard Gilderoy Lockhart. However, the filmmakers decided that Isaacs would be a far better fit for Draco Malfoy's father.
The actor declined, however; he was previously set to portray Captain Hook in Peter Pan, and didn't want to be associated with the image of two children villains. Fortunately for us, Isaacs' family intervened and persuaded him to portray the wizard noted for his long, straight blond hair.

#12 Helen McCrory — Bellatrix Lestrange

Source: © Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 / Warner Bros. and co-producers© Peaky Blinders / Caryn Mandabach Productions and co-producers

Helen McCrory was set to play the fanatic witch, Bellatrix Lestrange. J.K. Rowling had no veto power on McCrory since she was English. However, during filming, the star of Netflix's Peaky Blinders was pregnant. And then that was that.
Helena Bonham Carter replaced McCrory, and she produced one of the greatest performances of the trilogy. McCrory has yet to deliver her final comments on the subject. Fortunately for us, she returned to the franchise’s last three films, as Narcissa Malfoy.

#13 Henry Cavill — Cedric Diggory

Source: © Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire / Warner Bros. and co-producers© henrycavill / Instagram

Things did not look good for Cavill before he become the legendary The Man of Steel. In reality, Cavill lost not one, but two parts to Robert Pattinson. But the first is maybe less well-known among the general audience. He auditioned for the role of Cedric Diggory in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.
While the story of his losing to Robert in Harry Potter wasn’t as well-known, the one where he lost to Pattinson is. Cavill came quite close to portraying Edward Cullen, the protagonist of the Twilight franchise.

#14 Kate Winslet — Helena Ravenclaw

Source: © Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 / Warner Bros. and co-producers© Divergent / Summit Entertainment and co-producer

When one of the most popular franchises reach its end, producers felt compelled to create a memorable farewell. They wanted every element to be right, including an actress who could embody the brilliance of Helena Ravenclaw. The Grey Lady's brief appearance but crucial for the story.
Kate Winslet was at the top of the list. Unfortunately, her agency rejected the screenplay before even asking whether she was interested in the production. As a result, the Grey Lady was performed by the equally talented Kelly Macdonald.

#15 J. K. Rowling — Lily Potter

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There is no denying the striking resemblance between J. K. Rowling and Geraldine Somerville. Perhaps this is why the producers originally wanted the writer to play Lily Potter in Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone. She suited "the profile" so perfectly.
Rowling, on the other hand, gracefully refused the invitation. It's difficult to think that we might have seen J. K. Rowling on the big screen, but it's true. And we believe she would have done an excellent job!
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