Stop any Rupert Grint fan in the street, or online, and we’ll be more than happy to tell any clueless stranger the myriad of reasons why we love Rupes so much. Ranging from his ability to climb inside of a character and completely own it, to his humble, kind personality, to his wonderfully quirky sense of humor, to the breathtakingly gingery eyelashes, we’ll most certainly sing his praises.
However, we all remember the interviews conducted in the past, and back then Rupert was hardly an easy guy to interview. Rupert could hardly have been called “articulate”; often resorting to his now infamous verbal ticks, such as “uhh”, “err”, and everyone’s favorite and often imitated, “dunno really,” and more than once, sticking with very generic answers for a lot of questions. He was also known to get rather fidgety, constantly touching his face, rubbing his thighs and knees, playing with his hair, and almost constantly shifting in his seat. He wasn’t the most talkative or candid guy either, which seemed to irritate some “journalists” who had just interviewed Dan or Emma, and who sometimes made snide remarks about how “inarticulate” Rupert was in their articles. However, as fans, we all knew better that there was so much more to Rupert than all of his verbal hiccups and his deceptively generic question-answering. However, it’s been proven time and time again, that when Rupert had a good interview, or a good interviewer more likely, he and the interview were simply golden.
As in the “Moviefone” interview he did with director, Jeremy Brock, for the promotion of “Driving Lessons” at the Tribeca film festival.
Rupert seemed a little more anxious and self conscious than usual, which was to be expected and forgiven, as this was his first break out role as a leading man in a film that had nothing to do with Harry Potter. Rupert was quite flushed during the entire interview, and his verbal ticks and fidgeting were obviously in high gear the whole time. I would like to point out now, that when Rupert did have something important to say, he had a tendency to dive in with an answer rather quickly, with very little thought, which caused him to become tongue-tied and maybe not say exactly what he wanted. But I digress. Putting all of this aside, this is one of the “golden” interviews that I simply adore. Any thoughts of Rupert not being candid were delightfully laid to rest in this interview. When asked what three of his favorite things about movies were, Rupert had answers that revealed an incredibly thoughtful, sensitive person. One of my favorite was when he said that he wasn’t the most confident upfront person, hence he loved the fact that he can use a character to hide behind, and get to be someone else.
But as the years have gone on, we have witnessed Rupert become a little more confident, a little more sure of himself. It had become ubundantly clear that he had reached a personal milestone when he was promoting “Cherrybomb” at the Berlinale film festival this year. An interview in particular was the Spiegel TV interview he did with co-star, Kimberley Nixon.
While this had no brilliant revelations in it, Rupert presented himself in a way that made me realize how much he has changed and matured. His fiddling, while still present, was noticeably less. He seemed to gain control of his nervous hands by interlacing his fingers; in addition to that, he was also using his hands more demonstratively when he spoke. Overall, he seemed more relaxed, and quieter. But in a way that was helpful to him, he still had the verbal ticks, but these were fewer and far between than in the past. He seemed more comfortable with pausing before he spoke, and was able to articulate what he wanted to say. But this was just a small taste of what was to come at us in the months to follow.
If any Rupert fan had been waiting for the best, most candid interview in printed media, they certainly got what was a long to coming. One of them was in the form of BLAG magazine. A massive pictorial spread, complete with a six-page interview, that made every Rupert fan finally get a glimpse of who he really was as a person, how candid he could get, and a Rupert that was a bit bolder in what he said. Revealing how weird his sense of humor is, how he’d love to be in a Quentin Tarantino movie, and how he’d be happy to get offered interesting, diverse roles in his career.
Whatever glass roof Rupert was operating under, was gloriously torn asunder during the promotion of “Half-Blood Prince.” The more interviews he gave, Rupert got that much better at controlling his nervousness, his verbal ticks, and obviously, got better at expressing himself. While I love watching all the videoed interviews, a majority of the “golden” interviews are in printed form. One of my favorites is the Daily Mail interview, in which he makes the most rock and roll statement of all time:
From here on, I don’t want to play it safe. I need to take on roles that are as far away from Harry Potter as it’s possible to get. If I’m to continue as an actor, I need to play characters that are nothing like me at all.
A man addressing his future, with his fist in the air, ready to take on the world. A far cry from the nervous, fidgety guy who was more often times than not, misunderstood or judged because he wasn’t able to articulate himself very well.
This year has been a revelation for Rupert, and for his fandom. Evolution comes in small steps, takes years, and a lot of mistakes need to be made in order to get to the goal. We are witnessing the evolution, the era, the realization of the true Rupert Grint. A boy who couldn’t quite get the words right, but who now speaks boldy and honestly, and yet he is still the same humble, kind-hearted, quirky, talented, driven guy who can really surprise you sometimes. This is the real Rupert that we’ve all been waiting for years to see, and it’s finally arrived. I can’t help but think that in years to come, Rupert, and being his fan, will only get better and better.
Photo credits: Ian Derry for Mail Online, Tom Stockill for Times Online
Video credits: MSN Moviefone, Spiegel TV (the clip uses footage from the film Cherrybomb, courtesy of Generator Entertainment and The Little Film Company)