Harry Potter Stars Visit Perth
Updated: Jan 31
Scottish weather did its thing, quite spectacularly, over a two-day Harry Potter themed light festival in Perth. Movie stars, performers and the general public got equally dowsed, but there was enough magic in the air (and hot food for sale) to keep everyone's spirits bright.
We brought language learner Elsa (Sweden) to the event as she is a huge Harry Potter fan. She's previously toured the Warner Bros. studio near London and seen the sets (and even has some Dobby socks - shhh!), but had never before had the chance to meet one of the stars of the movie franchise. We were lucky enough to get to meet actor Chris Rankin (Percy Weasly) just before he shot off to the Q & A session: he was charm itself (thank you Chris!).
Chris Rankin, who played Percy Weasly in the Harry Potter movies, with Blue Noun's Elsa
The Q & A session was brilliant. The rain poured down to the extent that the stage lights flickered (was Peeves there too?), but there were no end of eager questions being asked from all age groups: we learned about living with fame from a young age, how the young actors had to combine filming and schooling, meeting J.K. Rowling for the first time, the joy of working for two weeks with Rik Mayall, and whether they'd ever pinched anything from the set.
On this subject, as a complete outsider to the industry, I was fascinated by how these young actors had been selected - their personalities seemed to fit their roles. As Chris said, he had applied because at the time, he was a red-headed, studious prefect. Crabbe (Jamie Waylett) and Goyle (Joshua Herdman) had both applied for the role of the book's spoilt meanie Dudley Dursley.
A question - had they ever pinched anything off set? Percy Weasly - no! (but he did have a story about someone else taking a pair Emma Watson's plain grey socks). Crabbe and Goyle, umm... yes... there's quite a list. Chris Rankin kept the question and answer session going smoothly, occasionally corralling the more boisterous, but good humoured pair back on track (and certainly taking it more seriously).
Herdman has now left acting for a career of cage fighting, and midway through filming the Potter franchise, Waylett went wayward getting arrested for rioting and drug offences, missing out on being a part of the final films; both of which seem so in keeping with Crabbe and Goyle, I'm fascinated by how the screen casters called it.
The secret stars of the evening were to be found being outrageously happy and in love in a small stall. Dragonfly Creative Arts were selling an array of charms, furry ears and magical potions for romantics and pessimists alike - as well as a healthy selection for crossword lovers! All ethical produce (eg. no creatures harmed in the harvesting of unicorn horns).
Both members of Dragonfly Creative Arts took time to explain their products, and (refreshingly) let kids enjoy seeing them too, John (in a steampunk hat) and Aliza (in adorable elf ears) also got talking about their own wedding: Aliza proposed to John with a message in a bottle left on a beach, and yes, for one of their weddings (the woodland one) she did wear her elf ears. Love your style! Do check out their website if you have to buy a gift for, 'the person who has everything': I'm really sure they don't have any unicorn poop yet.
We enjoyed this projection on the underside of a bridge too. Not sure who it's by, so if you do, let us know and we'll add a credit.
A few more shots of the festival
These girls enchanted the festival goers.
Live language learning!