It was the role of a lifetime, but Daniel Radcliffe is done playing Harry Potter… for the time being. The talented actor brought JK Rowling’s wizard off of the pages of her amazing novels, which powered eight fantastic (and successful) films. But even though Rowling isn’t finished telling stories in that world, Radcliffe has since moved on. BUT: “For how long?”
In the UK, the stage play Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is exciting theater audiences on a daily basis. Adapted for the stage by Jack Thorne (from a story by JK Rowling), Cursed Child takes place long after the events of the book, and finds an older Harry — in his late 30s or early 40s — in a new adventure as his children attend Hogwarts. No details will appear here, for those who are waiting to either read the stage play or see it live. But the NY Daily News is saying now that Warner Bros. wants to push forward on a big-screen adaptation of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, and they’re willing to throw Gringotts vaults of money at Daniel Radcliffe to return to the role.
So, let’s put on a Sorting Hat and figure it out.
There is no definite statement on a film adaptation of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child. And adaptations of successful stage shows tend to take a very long time because producers don’t want to stop people from buying (expensive) tickets to the plays or musicals, if a movie version exists. This is part of the reason why Wicked has taken so long. The shows are working. Why give audiences a cheaper alternative?
Also, Warner Bros. currently has a trilogy with Rowlings’ blessings in the works, and that’s Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. The new franchise drops on November 18, and the studio already has circled a date for a sequel. If audiences love Newt Scamander (Eddie Redmayne), that gives Warner an open door to explore passages without having to dig up Harry Potter and his cohorts.
Then there’s Daniel Radcliffe, who, since leaving the series that gave him professional notoriety, has been successful in distancing himself from Harry and establishing himself as a credible acting talent. Why would he run back to Harry Potter?
That being said, I do think Daniel Radcliffe eventually does return to the role of Harry Potter when Harry Potter and the Cursed Child finally makes it to theaters, But I don’t think that will happen anytime soon. On the movies side, Warner Bros. will explore Rowlings’ stories via the Fantastic Beasts franchise for the next few years. However, once that trilogy has run its course, they’ll approach Radcliffe and see what it would take to get him to return to the series.
Nonetheless I don’t think you can properly tell Harry Potter and the Cursed Child on the big screen without Radcliffe’s eventual support. Fortunately, for WB’s sake, I don’t think they’ll have to try.