The Harry Potter franchise, from books to films to spin-off films, has become so ingrained in popular culture that it has more or less become the defining serialized media to represent Generation Y. The movies, a vital aspect of the franchise's structure, became a crucial platform for veteran British thespians to introduce themselves to young audiences.
It also shoved a generation of young actors to the forefront of Hollywood culture, probably sooner than they were ready—and almost certainly more abruptly than they were prepared for. In a recent interview, Rupert Grint, who starred as the oafish but loyal Ron Weasley from the time he was
11, revealed that he considered leaving the series after the fourth movie due to the stress it was causing him.
"It’s a big sacrifice," Grint told Independent. "You take for granted anonymity, just doing normal stuff, just going out. Everything was different and a little bit scary. There were times when I was like, 'I’m done.'"
During the period in question, Grint had just finished taking the GCSEs, a standardized test in Britain, and was considering moving on from acting. "I thought, ‘Do I actually want to keep doing this? It’s a bit of a drag,'" he admitted.
Thankfully, Grint persevered through to the end of the series, though he faced the same dilemma once he was finished with the films.
"When I started, [acting] was never something that I aspired to do," he explained. "I did acting with school plays and stuff like that. But it was never something that I actively dreamed of. I mean, I fell in love with it while I was doing it."
Grint has taken something of a leisurely pace since the series wrapped back in 2011, signing up for mostly smaller roles in a smattering of films. However, he has recently been making an impact as a television actor, and has drawn praise for his roles on Sick Note and Snatch.