THEN AND NOW: The cast of Harry Potter

It would have been Professor Snape actor Alan Rickman’s 70th birthday today (Feb 21)

Photos: TPG, EPA
Photos: TPG, EPA
20 Feb 2016

Photos: TPG, EPA

News of a celebrity’s death is always a shock, but when respected British thespian Alan Rickman died of pancreatic cancer at the age of 69 on January 14 this year, the loss felt by millions of fans around the world was particularly perceptible.

Although the London native enjoyed fame and success on both film and the theatre stage since the 1980s, his prominence rose to a whole new level when he took on the role as stern and surly Professor Severus Snape in the Harry Potter franchise in 2001. Most devotees chose to draw reference to this portrayal when paying tribute to him, from quoting the books or revisiting movie scenes on social media, to turning the famous Platform 9¾ attraction at London’s King Cross station into a memorial for him. And, with what would have been his 70th birthday today (Feb 21), we’re sure there will be more honours reserved for the beloved actor.

While Alan may be gone, audiences can still catch him in two more upcoming films: as the voice of Absolem the Caterpillar in Alice Through the Looking Glass (in cinemas August 11) and as Lieutenant General Frank Benson in war thriller Eye in the Sky (in cinemas April 7). Yup, it looks like he was busy until the end. RIP, Alan Rickman.

Click through to see what the other stars of Harry Potter have been up to recently, and what’s next for them:

Daniel Radcliffe (Harry Potter)
Daniel Radcliffe (Harry Potter)
20 Feb 2016

Daniel Radcliffe (Harry Potter)

After Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2, the final instalment in the series, wrapped up in 2011, Daniel blazed on in his career with a wide variety of projects. Outside of the silver screen, the 26-year-old also wowed us with a completely unexpected skill: rapping. Just look up his epic renditions of Blackalicious’ ‘Alphabet Aerobics’ from 2014 and Eminem’s ‘The Real Slim Shady’ from last year – we’re tempted to think that black magic was behind his slick hip-hop rhythm.

A quick look at his filmography shows that Dan is still a very busy man: moviegoers can look out for him in Swiss Army Man, Imperium, Young Americans and Jungle in the not-so-distant future. On June 16, we’ll also see him trade his wand for a deck of cards as he goes from boy wizard to illusionist in Now You See Me 2. Hey, wouldn’t it really cool if he had a face-off scene with Mandopop king Jay Chou (who is also one of the new additions to the cast)?

Emma Watson (Hermione Granger)
Emma Watson (Hermione Granger)
20 Feb 2016

Emma Watson (Hermione Granger)

Everyone’s not-so-secret girl crush blossomed from a cute young thing into a lovely young woman right before our eyes, and is now regarded as a style icon, respected actress and influential activist. In 2014, the British lass gave a powerful and articulate speech on gender equality to launch the HeForShe campaign cementing her status as a feminist heroine (and reminding us all once again of her brilliant, take-no-crap and courageous Harry Potter character).

Of course, the 25-year-old hasn’t slowed down on the movies front: over the past few years, we saw her in varied roles in The Bling Ring, Noah, and Regression. She’ll also achieve official Disney Princess status when she stars as Belle in the upcoming live adaptation of Beauty and the Beast, slated for a March 16, 2017 release here.

Rupert Grint (Ron Weasley)
Rupert Grint (Ron Weasley)
20 Feb 2016

Rupert Grint (Ron Weasley)

At a glance, Rupert doesn’t seem to have been as busy as his co-stars, but he certainly hasn’t been idle either. In 2011, he opened his own boutique hotel, but it was shut down last month after making just £2,014 (about S$4,063) in four years. In happier news, he made his stage debut in black comedy Mojo in 2013, and starred on Broadway for the first time in It’s Only a Play in 2014.

In his latest movie Moonwalkers, Rupert plays a rock band manager who joins forces with a CIA agent to stage the iconic moon landing in 1969. The conspiracy theory comedy is a clear departure from what Harry Potter fans see him as, with several screenshots showing him wandering amidst a crowd of topless women. He’s also set to headline a yet-untitled drama as a comic book-obsessed office worker.

Ralph Fiennes (Lord Voldemort)
Ralph Fiennes (Lord Voldemort)
20 Feb 2016

Ralph Fiennes (Lord Voldemort)

Everyone’s favourite nose-less, “Avada Kedavra”-ing dark lord is as iconic to the series as he is terrifying, and they couldn’t have picked a better renowned villain player (Ralph’s antagonistic track record also includes brutal Nazi leader Amon Goeth in Schindler’s List and lord of the underworld Hades in Clash of the Titans) to bring him to life.

His latest and upcoming works, however, seem to have him in much more pleasant dispositions, more recently as James Bond’s boss M in Spectre and as legendary concierge M. Gustave in The Grand Budapest Hotel. He’ll soon be seen as a 50s Hollywood director in Hail, Caesar! (in cinemas April 21) and pioneering photographer Eadweard Muybridge in Flying Horse, directed by Gary Oldman (whom we will meet next in this slideshow). Then after that, we’ll get to hear him lend his voice to trusty butler Alfred in The Lego Batman Movie.

Gary Oldman (Sirius Black)
Gary Oldman (Sirius Black)
20 Feb 2016

Gary Oldman (Sirius Black)

(Spoiler alert ahead!) Sadly, Gary’s involvement in the series ended when Sirius was killed in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (save for a brief appearance in Deathly Hallows Part 2). The 57-year-old Brit himself, however, still had his presence very much felt in other shows, such as The Dark Knight trilogy, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy and Dawn of the Planet of the Apes. He also showed off his musical flair when he joined other stars to perform at a David Bowie tribute concert earlier this month.

Unsurprisingly, Gary has loads of new projects waiting to be unleashed, most of which are scheduled to open this year, including The Hitman’s Bodyguard, Criminal and The Space Between Us. He was also recently announced as a cast member of action thriller Hunter Killer alongside Gerard Butler, and, as we mentioned previously, will be in the director’s chair for Flying Horse.

Matthew Lewis (Neville Longbottom)
Matthew Lewis (Neville Longbottom)
20 Feb 2016

Matthew Lewis (Neville Longbottom)

Scroll through any article documenting the most amazing child star transformations, and you’re guaranteed to see the scruffy 26-year-old hunk on the list. Now a far cry from his pudgy, buck-toothed days, Matt is sporting much more chiselled features, a drool-worthy six-pack (which he proudly debuted in a sizzling magazine shoot last year) and even a moustache, specially grown for his new role on British TV series Ripper Street.

On March 3, Matt will also be seen in a supporting role in romantic film Me Before You, alongside Game of Thrones’ Emilia Clarke and The Hunger Games’ Sam Claflin. Sounds like there’s going to be some intense eye candy – in addition to the tear-jerking material – in that one!

Helena Bonham Carter (Bellatrix Lestrange)
Helena Bonham Carter (Bellatrix Lestrange)
20 Feb 2016

Helena Bonham Carter (Bellatrix Lestrange)

Thankfully, Helena is nowhere as deranged as her murderous witch character in real life. While she does somewhat specialise in playing crazy-haired oddballs (Les Misérables and Sweeney Todd are two notable examples), she’s also been known to clean up quite nicely on screen, even playing the late Elizabeth Taylor in Burton and Taylor, Queen Elizabeth in The King’s Speech and the Fairy Godmother in 2015’s Cinderella.

But if you prefer the 49-year-old in her big-haired-and-bonkers mode (when the cameras are rolling, of course), you’ll be glad to know that she’ll be coming back as the decapitation-loving Red Queen in Alice Through the Looking Glass on August 11. She’ll also be in involved in a couple of TV shows, namely Codes of Conduct and Love, Nina, both of which are scheduled for release this year.

Dame Maggie Smith (Professor Minerva McGonagall)
Dame Maggie Smith (Professor Minerva McGonagall)
20 Feb 2016

Dame Maggie Smith (Professor Minerva McGonagall)

Did you know that the 81-year-old screen legend won two Oscars long before she became known to a generation as Hogwarts’ strict but highly respected Deputy Headmistress (and later Headmistress)? Despite being 77 when the movies wrapped, Maggie blazed on with her other recent notable role: as Dowager Countess Violet Crawley in TV series Downton Abbey, which ended last year.

And she still hasn’t stopped making waves in 2016: critics have unabashedly heaped praise upon her performance in her latest film project The Lady in the Van, in which she shows us a drastically different side as a prickly old woman who lives in a rickety old vehicle. She also became the envy of women everywhere when, prompted by host Stephen Fry’s “kiss cam”, Leonardo DiCaprio planted a smooch on her cheek at this year’s BAFTAs.

Tom Felton (Draco Malfoy)
Tom Felton (Draco Malfoy)
20 Feb 2016

Tom Felton (Draco Malfoy)

Despite being a big bully on screen, Tom still managed to amass a legion of fangirling followers (the bad boy effect, perhaps?). After Harry Potter ended its run, he scored a part as another unscrupulous character in 2011’s Rise of the Planet of the Apes, and then showed us his many facets as an actor in numerous projects of varying genres including horror, period and even indie.

Thankfully for his admirers, it doesn’t look like the 28-year-old is about to go away any time soon. On March 17, audiences can catch him as a young Roman soldier in Biblical epic Risen (alongside Ralph’s younger brother Joseph Fiennes), followed by at least six other pictures that are either still being shot or are in post-production.

Domhnall Gleeson (Bill Weasley)
Domhnall Gleeson (Bill Weasley)
20 Feb 2016

Domhnall Gleeson (Bill Weasley)

Bill may not have been a major character in the series, but we thought it’d be interesting to check up on Domhnall’s more recent endeavours since portraying the eldest Weasley brother. Last year, he was in four productions, the biggest of which is arguably Star Wars: The Force Awakens, in which he played the ruthless General Hux, one of the main baddies along with Darth Vader-loving Kylo Ren. His other recent works include Ex Machina and The Revenant (now in cinemas).

The 32-year-old will soon be seen reprising his villainous role in Star Wars: Episode VIII (which has just begun production), as well as two more flicks Mena and Crash Pad, both of which have him as the main male leads.

Report a problem