On the occasion of Robbie Coltrane’s 73rd birthday, Tom Felton, best known for playing Draco Malfoy in the Harry Potter films, paid tribute to his late co-star.
In a touching article created for E! Felton talked about his experiences working with the late actor, who died in October 2022 after suffering from multiple organ failure.
Felton started off by discussing the distinct dynamic between the adult and child actors in the initial Harry Potter films. Felton described the cast as being divided into two different age groups, with some actors in their sixties and seventies and others as young as nine.
The actors became close friends because they both adored the Harry Potter world, despite their disparities in age and experience.
The series’ much-loved Hagrid was portrayed by Robbie Coltrane, who also stood out among the adult actors. Felton recalled how Coltrane frequently made the kids on set giggle with his antics and described him as “endlessly fun” and “always friendly.”
“Robbie was like a big kid himself,” Felton wrote. “He loved to joke around and play pranks, and he always had a smile on his face. But he also had this incredible warmth and kindness that made everyone feel at ease.”
Coltrane’s acting skills were also praised by Felton, who called him a “true professional” who gave each scene his all. He remembered working on a particularly poignant scene with Coltrane, in which Hagrid laments the death of a beloved creature, and how impressed he was with the actor’s portrayal.
“Robbie had this way of making even the most fantastical scenes feel real,” Felton wrote. “He was so fully invested in every moment, and his passion for his craft was infectious.”
An Adult and A Child
“Unless, that is, you were Robbie Coltrane,” Felton wrote. “Somehow, Coltrane maintained ‘a foot in both camps’ and ‘managed to be an adult and a child at the same time.'” Felton recounted how Coltrane’s extensive knowledge of the world, from engineering to geography, from history to travel, was “astounding,” and how the older actors valued and respected his experience.
Despite his adult-like intellect, Coltrane had the heart of a child, as Felton explained. He recalled a table read for the first Harry Potter film, where Coltrane and Emma Watson decided to play a joke during introductions.
“Before we started, we all introduced ourselves,” Felton wrote. “When their turn came, [Coltrane] persuaded [Watson] to swap characters. ‘I’m Emma and I’ll be playing Rubeus Hagrid.’ ‘I’m Robbie and I’ll be playing Hermione Granger.'”
Felton added that the joke had a profound impact on the cast, reminding them to approach the film with a sense of fun.
“We were only making a film. We weren’t saving lives,” Felton wrote. Coltrane’s ability to bring joy to those around him was a testament to his kind and playful nature, something that will undoubtedly be missed.
Robbie Coltrane, who played the iconic role of Hagrid in the Harry Potter franchise, passed away in October 2022 from multiple organ failure. His legacy as an actor and a person will undoubtedly live on, as he continues to inspire and bring joy to those who knew him and loved his work.
Felton’s tribute to Coltrane serves as a touching reminder of the impact he had on the lives of those around him, and the world of Harry Potter.
Coltrane’s Character is Unforgettable
Despite having a wealth of experience and knowledge, Coltrane never took himself too seriously, Felton wrote. He added that Coltrane’s kind and playful nature was essential to his iconic portrayal of Hagrid, the lovable half-giant who served as a mentor and friend to Harry and his friends.
“Without Hagrid, there’s no Hogwarts,” Felton said, “And nobody could, would, or ever will play that gentle giant half as well as my dearly missed friend Robbie Coltrane.”
Coltrane passed away in October 2022 from multiple organ failure, leaving behind a legacy that has inspired generations of fans. In January 2022, he joined his former co-stars for the HBO Max special Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts, where he spoke about the franchise’s enduring impact.
“The legacy of the movies is that my children’s generation will show them to their children. You can be watching it in 50 years’ time, easy. I’ll not be here, sadly. But Hagrid will, yes.”
Coltrane’s legacy as an actor and a person will undoubtedly continue to inspire and bring joy to those who knew him and loved his work. Felton’s tribute to his late co-star serves as a touching reminder of the impact Coltrane had on the lives of those around him, and the world of Harry Potter.
The Harry Potter franchise has become one of the most beloved film series of all time, capturing the imaginations of millions of fans around the world. But it wasn’t just the magic and adventure that drew people in – it was also the strong sense of family that existed both on and off the screen.
The cast of the Harry Potter films formed close bonds during their time working together, creating a true sense of community that has lasted long after the final credits rolled.
One of the key factors in the family-like atmosphere of the Harry Potter cast was the fact that many of the actors were quite young when they began filming.
Emma Watson, who played Hermione Granger, was just nine years old when she was cast in the role, while Daniel Radcliffe, who played Harry Potter himself, was only eleven. This meant that they grew up together on set, forming close friendships that have lasted to this day.
In interviews, the cast has often spoken about the strong relationships they formed while filming the movies. Rupert Grint, who played Ron Weasley, has said that he felt like he had “known Dan and Emma forever” by the time they finished filming. Tom Felton, who played Draco Malfoy, has also talked about the bond he formed with the other actors, saying that they “were all in it together.”
In addition to their shared experiences on set, the Harry Potter cast also formed a strong sense of family off screen. Many of the actors would spend time together outside of work, bonding over shared interests and experiences. They even celebrated holidays together, with the cast members often gathering to celebrate Christmas and other special occasions.
The cast’s sense of community extended to the wider Harry Potter fanbase as well. The actors would often attend fan conventions and events, meeting with fans and sharing stories about their time working on the films.
They have also used their platform to promote important causes, such as environmentalism and social justice, which has helped to create a sense of shared purpose among fans and cast members alike.