Daniel Radcliffe is glad he renounced JK Rowling: trans kids identified with HP

Daniel Radcliffe was one of the first HP actors to speak out against JK Rowling’s transphobia. A lot of people were angry at him for it. They made ridiculous arguments about him biting the hand that fed him. They believed he owed J.K. too much to throw his support behind the people she was actively harming. Daniel never walked back on his comments or waivered in his support, nor did he mud wrestle online with those coming for him. IndieWire asked Daniel why Harry Potter himself would speak out for trans people when it was seen as ‘going against’ J.K. Daniel said because he was Harry Potter, with whom so many LGBTQ+ kids have identified, he owed them not her.

At this point, “Harry Potter” author J.K. Rowling’s transphobia is widely known, so vehemently has she used her international notoriety to spew hateful views against the most vulnerable segment of the LGBTQ+ community. Fans of her popular books and films have been blindsided, shocked, and left scratching their heads as to why the author of a seemingly positive fantasy tale about acceptance of differences would become so radicalized against a single marginalized group.

But Daniel Radcliffe, who rose to international fame playing “the boy who lived” onscreen, is most concerned about the young trans fans who have felt betrayed and hurt deeply by Rowling’s dangerous comments.

“The reason I was felt very, very much as though I needed to say something when I did was because, particularly since finishing ‘Potter,’ I’ve met so many queer and trans kids and young people who had a huge amount of identification with Potter on that. And so seeing them hurt on that day I was like, I wanted them to know that not everybody in the franchise felt that way. And that was really important,” Radcliffe told IndieWire during a recent interview.

“It was really important as I’ve worked with the Trevor Project for more than 10 years, and so I don’t think I would’ve been able to look myself in the mirror had I not said anything,” he told IndieWire. “But it’s not mine to guess what’s going on in someone else’s head.”

[From IndieWire via Pajiba]

“Seeing them hurt on that day I was like, I wanted them to know that not everybody in the franchise felt that way.” One of the great things about Daniel is how plainly he conveys his message. He’s not centering himself in this argument, nor is he positioning himself as the hero. He watched an entire section of the fandom feel cutoff from the HP world and Daniel’s reaction was to preserve a safe space. It’s important to note that J.K. doubling down on her hatred came from a place of fear and ignorance, without listening to what the community tried to educate her on. Daniel’s comments came from working with the community, hearing their challenges, knowing their issues, and understanding the representation they need. Of course people are still claiming that Daniel is ungrateful and an opportunist now that the franchise is over. Fortunately Daniel’s character is stronger than the incels and their silly little insults.

And I can’t wait for Weird: The Al Yankovic Story. That premieres this Friday on the Roku Channel.

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30 Responses to “Daniel Radcliffe is glad he renounced JK Rowling: trans kids identified with HP”

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  1. MangoAngelesque says:

    He seems like such a genuinely good guy. I’m so glad he was cast as HP, he’s a legitimately good person for people to have grown up admiring.

  2. Emily_C says:

    Her latest book is also incredibly ableist. And I read the first chapter and it’s just plain badly written. I ended up hating the two protaganists. They were like particularly mean, shallow 12-year olds. Just in the first chapter!

    • Lucy says:

      The HP series itself is also very fatphobic. JKR suuuuuucks as a person.

      • Emily_C says:

        Also sexist. Girls and women have to be an exactly perfect way to be accepted, feminine enough but not too feminine. Most certainly not sexual. Also they should drop everything else when they have kids. And it’s racist — there are the Patels, there’s the way anyone who isn’t English (I do mean English, not British) is treated, all the stereotypes. And so many other things if I keep going I’m going to end up with an essay.

        In the chapter I read of The Ink Black Heart, she managed to be prejudiced against people who study sheep. Also for some reason there are two bestiality references within like a page, so um that’s… something.

    • Flowerlake says:

      Emily_C, thanks for saying that. I often get the feeling that anyone not British or American is being treated as ‘lesser than’.

      Even people discriminated in a country where English is the native language often ignore people from other countries, refuse to look for any media not from English native speakers (subtitles are pretentious, y’all) and often close ranks against us.

      Anyone annoyed by my comment: how often do you make an effort to see beyond the English speaking world?

      • AlpineWitch says:

        “I often get the feeling that anyone not British or American is being treated as ‘lesser than’.”

        This is my experience too, as a forinner who has been living in the UK for many, many years (wrong spelling on purpose).

      • Flowerlake says:

        Agreed. I don’t even live there, but I’m fed up with seeing only English music, movies etc promoted and shown.

        A lot of it isn’t even good. Some is. Not against all English media, but if native English speakers basically boycott and snub other media, why should everyone else always be so welcoming to theirs?

      • Emily_C says:

        I totally agree with you.

        JKR is super extreme. She goes a step further and treats anyone not *English* as “lesser than.” Her one Irish and one Scottish character are stereotypes, and the Welsh do not exist in her world. Actually she also treats characters from Northern England as less. She’s a Home Counties Little Englander, reaching back to the 19th century for her prejudices.

        JKR approves of only an incredibly narrow type of person. She loves bullies. She much prefers men, though of course they have to be a specific type of man. Also she has lost her writing ability — I wonder if it’s because she’s no longer being edited. But even if that’s the case, I see no excuse for how terrible her style is now. Hate atrophies the brain.

    • Chantal says:

      @Emily C. Its really a shame bc I liked the first couple of books she wrote as RG. Then I read about her comments…
      I’ve never read any HP books nor watched any of the movies and now I don’t want to. I can only imagine the disappointment from the fandom. Such a pity. Some authors are truly revealing themselves to be quite despicable.

  3. Case says:

    Wonderful of him to speak about this and, as the article noted, to speak so plainly about how he feels. Regardless of how hateful the creator of HP is, people should still be able to enjoy this story that meant so much to them as children — and knowing Daniel is on the right side of this certainly helps with that.

  4. Lucy says:

    DRad is a real one. Big Gryffindor energy!

  5. TIFFANY says:

    Daniel is a good egg. I have always liked him.

  6. Kokiri says:

    What a strange society we have created.
    Because we once worked for someone, who hired us & paid us, we owe them our undying loyalty for life?
    We can’t ever say anything about them? Especially criticizing them?
    Or else we’re ungrateful. Biting the hand that fed us.
    What an odd thing to think. It explains a lot about trumpism though, how that type of person wants to roll back the clock to the time when you worked for one company for life & DID give undying loyalty to the company and owner.
    It’s so bizarre I can’t wrap my head around it.

    Anyway! Love Daniel, glad he’s doing well & I always admire stand up people.
    JK doesn’t ever come for him though, that I’ve seen? Just minority persons.

    • It Really Is You, Not Me says:

      What struck me is that you never hear it said that a kid who disagrees politically or morally with their parent is biting the hand that quite literally fed them. But because Daniel radcliffe grew up to disagree with the woman who….wrote the books that the movies he starred in were based on means that he has to agree with everything she says and does until the end of time? I guess some people think that he should have just kept his mouth shut, but what about HIS morals? It sounds like this is something that he felt deeply called to do something about and he was STILL very careful not to be rude to JK Rowling in doing so.

  7. Flowerlake says:

    I know so many people who identified with HP in some way: abused people, victims of discrimination etc.

    Still sour about how she turned out.

    Daniel is amazing

  8. Lizzie Bathory says:

    Dan has always been an ally. Good on him for standing up for the community while JKR doubles down on her cruelty.

    I’m so excited to watch Weird!

  9. anniefannie says:

    The reason his views are sought and accepted is he really IS such a good guy! He doesn’t use his voice to settle scores or belittle anyone, it’s simply what’s right vs what’s wrong! If more likeminded celebs showed the bravery he’s shown perhaps they could change hearts & minds, what a worthy platform

  10. Leah says:

    He seems like such a sweetheart IRL. And I love that he’s addressed this again since that woman’s hatred seems to have only grown/become more public.
    Also, he’s turned into such a delightful actor! He was hilarious in The Lost City. I really want to watch the Weird AL movie but we don’t have Roku and I’m unclear on how to watch it without one.

  11. Pointillist says:

    He seems like such a good person and yes to everything he is saying.

    Rowling is ridiculous and is harmful.

    When I was deeply depressed an anxious, I read something by Dan Radcliffe where he said he can’t go around not trusting people – he has to live his life. His comment was in relation to fame but it resonated with me so much and I credit him to this day – although of course I did so much work and was doing therapy, journaling etc.

    I can’t even imagine what a relief a trans fan of his and the series would feel upon hearing or reading his words.

  12. QuiteContrary says:

    We’re big fans of HP in our house, and one of my kids is gay. Daniel Radcliffe has saved HP for us.
    While I won’t spend another penny that might find its way back to Rowling, I’m grateful that Radcliffe has redeemed HP. He’s a good dude and genuinely very talented. He doesn’t need Rowling — that tragic transphobe — anymore.

  13. Barbiem says:

    Still a fan of her work. She was never an amazing writing. Im in the minority with my views on JK

    • AlpineWitch says:

      She’s always been a terrible writer, although with good ideas. For me she’s like E. L. James, terrible people and writers with a lot of luck in life.
      I donated my 7 HP books to a charity when she first went on her trans crusades.

    • Emme says:

      Whether you think her writing good or bad, she got kids all around the world interested in books, and that can only be a good thing.
      Personally I think if children are even reading the back of a Cornflakes box it’s a good thing!

    • Emily_C says:

      She was never an amazing writer, but she had a basic level of competency. (Unlike E.L. James.) And she could write page-turners. That’s a skill.

      She’s gotten worse. Way worse. Her style is now unreadable. Her writing no longer even feels like it was written by an adult, but by a very nasty, uneducated, immature 14-year old.

  14. Incognita says:

    I loved to HP series. I used those books to help teach non-English speakers. I read them to my children and they were a comfort read when we emigrated to a country where we didn’t speak the language. We showed up for the films. And then the author spewed out her political views and we were heartbroken. I’m so thankful for Daniel Radcliffe (and Emma and the rest) for pushing back against a beloved author. They allowed us to reclaim some of the joy of our memories, though we no longer support the author in our home.

  15. Cee says:

    He’s my favourite, ever.

  16. jferber says:

    Love for Daniel.

  17. serena says:

    He’s a really great guy, it makes me root for him even more.