Ladies and gentlemen, meet our new Harry Potter, Ron Weasley, and Hermione Granger.
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child was an interesting idea from the beginning, but when it was announced that the new play would not only be a new story set in the Potter world, but would also act as the eighth installment in the franchise, it went from being a new Harry Potter project, to something even more important.
Set nineteen years after the events of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, the play will tell the story of Harry’s youngest son, Albus, and how his struggles to live up to his family’s legacy may impact his relationship with Harry, who is feeling pressures of his own.
Now, in anticipation of the play’s opening in just a few short months, the official lead cast of the play has been announced, revealing our newest Harry, Ron, and Hermione, played by Jamie Parker, Paul Thornley, and Noma Dumezweni. Check out the announcement tweet below:
— Harry Potter Play (@HPPlayLDN) December 21, 2015
(Left to right that is Paul Thornley as Ron, Noma Dumezweni as Hermione, and Jamie Parker as Harry)
Now, there’s been bound to be some controversial nature to the casting for long-time Potter fans, as Hermione in the film was played as a white character by Emma Watson in the original films. However, before any complaints could ever really gain too much ground, Potter creator and Cursed Child collaborator J.K. Rowling tweeted about the casting – pointing out that she left Hermione’s race in the novels ambiguous, meaning it is entirely possible (canon-wise) that the character could be played by more racially diverse actresses.
I’ll be honest right now as a die-hard Harry Potter fan though – it is going to be extremely weird to see anyone other than Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, and Rupert Grint playing these characters. We spent over ten years seeing their interpretations of the characters grow and evolve as the actors themselves did as well, and I don’t think I’d be going too far out on a limb by predicting that some kind of adjustment period will have to take place before Thornley, Dumezweni, and Parker are fully accepted as these characters.
Or maybe there won’t be? Who knows? Either way, this will certainly be an interesting series of events to watch unfold.
Parker is currently starring in the West End version of Guys and Dolls, Dumezweni is leading the Royal Court Theatre’s Linda, and Thornley stars in London Road right now as well, after creating the same role onstage. Jack Thorne is directing the two-part play, written by John Tiffany, who worked with Rowling to create the story. Imogen Heap will be providing the music for the production as well, and anyone familiar with Heap’s music will probably agree with me when I say that her take on a Harry Potter play could turn out to be very interesting.
Personally, I’m just interested in seeing where Cursed Child is planning on taking these beloved characters moving forwards. We only really got a glimpse of the adult lives of our favorite trio in the Epilogue of Deathly Hallows, so seeing what might have happened afterwards, and the drama that might ensue, will hopefully make for an interesting and warranted continuation to the Harry Potter story.
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child opens for previews on May 2016, and then opens to the wide public on July 30, 2016
Make sure to keep checking back for more updates — right here on GeekNation.
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