Even though it’s been over 10 years since the last Harry Potter movie premiered, the saga is still one of the most beloved franchises ever. This is largely thanks to the magical world that Rowling created, which was brought to the silver screen by Warner Bros. and the talented actors.
Certain Harry Potter characters became iconic thanks to the actors behind them. They clearly studied their characters in the books and did an extra effort to make them unforgettable, which allowed them to be perfectly adapted to the silver screen.
10/10 Lucius Malfoy Was Great From Beginning To End
Jason Isaac arrived to the Harry Potter universe as Lucius Malfoy in the Chamber of Secrets. Harry meets Draco’s father and has his first encounter with one of the Wizarding society’s most purist families. Isaac was everything fans expected from the character: poised and cruel, yet often pathetic.
Lucius Malfoy is one of those secondary characters who turned out to be quite important throughout the saga. The films did a great job peppering him here and there without neglecting him or giving him too many scenes. This, combined with Isaac’s commitment to the role, made him an excellent antagonist.
9/10 Emma Thompson Gave Sybill Trelawney Proper Emotional Depth
Portrayed by Emma Thompson, Professor Trelawney is Harry’s eccentric Divination teacher. Most characters consider her a sham, but she’s actually responsible for two of the most important prophecies in the Wizarding World. Her character is not quite a fan favorite, but Thompson gave a brilliant performance, perfectly depicting the teacher’s mannerisms.
In the books, Trelawney is a witch who depends on the shock factor to be taken seriously. Thompson perfectly captures her cringe-worthy attitude, while also making the fans feel sorry for her when Umbridge humiliates her. This characterization makes the viewers feel more empathy for her than the books’ Trelawney ever did.
8/10 Fred And George Are The Best Adapted Weasleys
The hilarious Fred and George Weasley are two of the best characters in the Harry Potter series. The prankster twins are a key element in Harry’s understanding of the magical world and also add necessary humor to the story. James and Oliver Phelps did such a great job that they’re synonymous with the characters.
The core of Fred and George’s sense of humor comes from their combined wittiness. They often talk as if they rehearsed a number. The Phelps twins give the same vibe, which makes them the best actors for the roles. On top of that, it also helps that none of the movies neglected their storylines from the books.
7/10 The Films Portray Dumbledore’s Serenity In The First Few Books Just Right
One of the biggest controversies in the Harry Potter fandom was the recast of Richard Harris’s Dumbledore after he passed. Given that the later movies don’t adapt Dumbledore as well, giving him an energetic vibe that doesn’t go with the books’ iteration of the wizard, the fandom can’t help to miss Richard Harris.
Harris was the right choice for the earlier Dumbledore because he still gave off an inspirational, paternal, and pacific vibe whenever he spoke to Harry, and fans agree there was something magical about his portrayal. He was as mysterious and quirky as Dumbledore was in the first few books.
6/10 Julie Walters Flawlessly Embodies The Weasley Matriarch
One of the best moms in movies, Molly Weasley is a well-adapted character. While she’s a nurturing mother, who happens to be Harry’s first maternal figure, she’s also a powerful witch and a stern parent. Throughout the books, she switches from one to the other, depending on the situation. There’s no doubt that her kids challenge her patience.
The value of Molly as a character relies not only on her role as a mother but also on her theatrical demeanor. The way she goes from being concerned anf angry to relieved reminds some viewers of their own mothers. It helps a lot that Julie Walters is a brilliant actor who manages to convey all of those emotions.
5/10 Dolores Umbridge Is Cruel
For a villain who isn’t a Death Eater, Dolores Umbridge is one of the nastiest antagonists in the Harry Potter saga. The book does a great job of explaining how corny she is while also being incredibly cruel. In the films, Imelda Stanton perfectly depicted these traits.
Stanton’s physical acting is almost a word-by-word play from the book. She’s nitpicky and callous to the point where most viewers hate her even more than Voldemort. This is in great part thanks to Stanton’s commitment to creating a visceral reaction in the audience.
4/10 Matthew Lewis Showed Neville’s Growth
Neville Longbottom grew a lot in the Harry Potter series and the films perfectly managed to portray this. He goes from Harry Potter’s well-intentioned but unlucky friend to becoming the leader of the rebellion at Hogwarts and the one who kills Voldemort’s last Horcrux, Nagini.
Matthew Lewis grew up with Neville, and he managed to hilariously depict Neville’s awkwardness in his younger years without the audience losing empathy for the character. However, he also did a great job portraying Neville as an adult, showing his courage and determination in the face of danger, which was very book-accurate.
3/10 Luna Lovegood Was Eccentric, Wholesome, And Quirky
Since she first appeared in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Luna Lovegood became a fan favorite character thanks to her quirky but wholesome personality. Warner Bros. did an exhaustive search for Luna, and Evanna Lynch auditioned against 50,000 other girls.
As a fan herself, Lynch understood this character perfectly. According to David Heyman, Harry Potter‘s producer, “the others could play Luna, Evanna Lynch is Luna” (via The Independent). Lynch portrayed Luna’s peculiar demeanor, her dreamy voice, and her kindness just like fans had pictured her. It’s hard to imagine a different Luna Lovegood now.
2/10 Rubeus Hagrid Had His Affable And Clumsy Demeanor
Hagrid is one of the most important people in Harry’s life. Hagrid is Harry’s first contact with the Wizarding World and the only adult Harry completely trusts. His role is so important that it was necessary to make him as similar as in the books as possible.
Fortunately, Robbie Coltrane was the perfect decision. The late actor fully conveyed Hagrid’s personality, from his Scottish accent to his affable but clumsy demeanor. Since Hagrid is big and hairy, it probably was difficult not to make him scary, but Coltrane transmitted this character’s warmth while also making him hilarious.
1/10 Minerva McGonagall Was Stern But Loving
Dame Maggie Smith earned the hearts of all Harry Potter fans with her portrayal of the stern but lovable Professor Minerva McGonagall. One of Dumbledore’s most loyal allies, McGonagall was also his second in command, both in battle and at Hogwarts administration.
Smith’s performance in the Harry Potter movies was so compelling that fans liked McGonagall more as a result. The whole Potter generation has a very hard time imagining someone else in the role. In the books, McGonagall is nurturing through her actions, but not through her dry demeanor, Smith added a layer of warmth through her voice and expressions.