Daniel Radcliffe recently chatted with Yahoo about his new movie ‘What If,’ bacon, Justin Bieber, fandoms, and so much more.
‘What If’ is a romantic comedy based on the play Toothpaste and Cigars (written by by T.J. Dawe and Michael Rinaldi) in which a man struggles to keep from falling in love with his friend, Chantry, played by Zoe Kazan. The film opened in select theaters today! Check out the interview below.
You’ve dealt with some extreme fans, thanks of the Harry Potter films. Do you think there’s a line people cross where their fandom is taken too far?
Look, I’m never going to make anyone feel embarrassed for how much they like something, because I get like that, too. There’s nobody I would’ve waited outside in the rain for hours and hours, but there’s definitely stuff I get that into that I’m very embarrassingly excited about. But there are fans that you see again and again and again, particularly with teenagers, and you have to ask, “Do your parents know you come here everyday?” You do worry sometimes, particularly with some letters you get, when someone’s basically saying, “You are all I have in my life.” That is a bit scary. ‘Cause you [think], “I can’t deal with that responsibility or that pressure.” It’s a load.
A few years ago, we talked about the fact that people are generally surprised that you achieved worldwide fame and huge wealth at such a young age, but were able to stay grounded and stay out of trouble. Now that you’re older, when you young celebrities who aren’t handling it so well — people like Justin Bieber — do you empathize with them?
I do, because everyone makes a judgment and nobody knows what it’s like. The version of growing up in the spotlight that I did is different from Justin Bieber’s or Miley Cyrus ’ . I have amazing parents. And, growing up in England, there is a natural tendency to want to take the piss out of people. People say that’s why Hitler would never come to power in Britain, because we would’ve just sort of laughed at him. And there is something to that.
But I have come to the conclusion now that fame doesn’t make you an a—hole. I got to meet Jennifer Lawrence, and she is one of the most famous people in the f—king world, and could not have been nicer. It’s in you or it isn’t in you. And basically, we are in an industry which facilitates and enables people to be d—-kheads if they want to be, and actually sometimes rewards it. The crazier you are, the more attention you get, or the more leeway you’re granted.
But, yeah, I feel sorry for anyone who is having stuff written about them that might or might not be true. It’s not an easy thing to know that there are so many people out there that want to see you f—k up. It’s a very odd feeling, because you sort of feel a certain group of people are hoping for it. And to be 18 or 19, and to know there’s a section of people out there that want you to fail, is very odd. I can see how that might make people a little crazy.
At your recent Comic-Con panel for Horns, you also mentioned the press — and not glowingly. Does your relationship with journalists ever get contentious?
Not contentious. It’s just that I wish people didn’t care when something happened, or when I do something. Sometimes I do interviews with people. And I’ll be sitting next to another actor, and I’ll hear them say something and think, “If I f——king said that, that would be a story. It would be put everywhere.”
And it’s not even the American media. To the British media, we’re just a joke. Any actor, anyone who does well for themselves, is just there to be made fun of. I think the people who write those stories are just kind of scummy. For example, last year in the UK, I was doing [the play] Cripple of Inishmaan. Towards the end of the show, [Each night], I was sweaty and bedraggled, and I’d go out to meet fans, and every night, the paparazzi would take photos of me. And five or six different times, one paper ran a story [with those photos] that amounted to, “Why is Daniel Radcliffe so pale and so thin? He obviously needs help. His fans are worried about him.”
Whenever people start just making stuff up, [I assume it’s] because they’re too lazy to do their job well. I hate lazy actors. I hate lazy journalists. I’ve been interviewed by countless journalists who I’ve had fantastic conversations with. Who ask interesting questions and who write really well. But unfortunately, that’s not what most people think of as journalism now. Most people think of journalism as a kind of literary gossip-mongering [device] now, which is a shame.
It’s a vicious cycle that feeds on itself.
It’s always implied that celebrities enjoy the celebrity culture, because they are the beneficiaries of it. Because they get everything they want and doors open for them or whatever. But I would much prefer it if I could just release a film every few months, and people would just go and see it without me having to tell anyone anything about my personal life.
Like, the other day, I’m getting asked loads of questions about when I lost my virginity. And it’s because I was sort of ambushed about it in an interview and just answered. And then somebody in an Extra interview came up to me and was asking me about the time I lost my virginity, and I was just like, “Well, you tell me about yours.” It’s one of those things where I was suddenly like, “No I don’t have to answer that.” That is personal information. That’s the interesting thing about celebrities is that when you are famous, people forget how they would normally act around another non-famous person. And all the sort of things that we agree upon in society that are polite to not to ask or ask, they’re sort of thrown out the window.
Plus, everyone wants selfies now. Are you okay with that?
Well I ended up taking a load of selfies at the stage door of Cripple of Inishmaan, because nobody else knows how to work their camera. I know how to work their camera better than everyone else. I was just like, “Give me your phone.”
It’s an interesting thing: The internet isn’t about having a good time — it’s about showing people you’re having a good time. When you go out to bars and clubs, nobody’s actually dancing or enjoying themselves; they’re all taking photos of themselves at the bar so that later on they can say, “I was there, wasn’t it great?” It’s crazy.
Check out this entire interview over at Yahoo!
‘What If‘ Synopsis
Medical school dropout Wallace has been repeatedly burned by bad relationships. So while everyone around him, including his roommate Allan seems to be finding the perfect partner, Wallace decides to put his love life on hold. It is then that he meets Chantry, an animator who lives with her longtime boyfriend Ben. Wallace and Chantry form an instant connection, striking up a close friendship. Still, there is no denying the chemistry between them, leading the pair to wonder, what if the love of your life is actually your best