Daniel Radcliffe: I find it hard to watch myself in early Harry Potter films

Actor who played lead role in the series says he thinks there was little nuance to his performances in the early movies

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Daniel Radcliffe: I find it hard to watch myself in early Harry Potter films
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Actor Daniel Radcliffe says he thinks he could have done with acting lessons when filming the early Harry Potter films.

The 24-year-old, who played the boy wizard in all eight of the films, tells Melvyn Bragg that he finds the early films “hard to watch" in an edition of the South Bank Show airing this Thursday.

He says that he and co-stars Emma Watson and Rupert Grint were not given acting coaching on the set of the blockbuster films.

“If we had a singing scene we had a singing teacher come in. If we had a dance scene a dance coach would come in. We never had an acting coach in all the time we were there and there were times we could have done with one. I know I could have.

“There wasn’t a lot of nuance to my performance when we were young and I find those early films very hard to watch personally. There were certain things I just didn’t know. There were certain things like how to break down a script, or even certain questions like what does a certain character want out of a certain scene.”

Radcliffe appears to be thinking of his first two films, Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone and Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets.

He tells Bragg that he is glad to have developed his acting talents and credits the appearance of Gary Oldman as wizard Sirius Black in the third Potter film, the 2004 movie Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, for helping his professional development.

The two became close friends and Radcliffe reveals that he also sought out relationship advice from his onscreen godfather.

“I was going on my first date and I was doing a scene with Gary Oldman that day so I ended up being anxious about my first date... with Gary Oldman and asking advice and all that stuff," he says.

Radcliffe also reveals that he harboured an early ambition to be a professional wrestler.

“I definitely drifted into acting to start with…I saw an interview with myself, they asked me what do you want to do when you grow up and I completely, sincerely and earnestly answer 'I want to be a professional wrestler', because I was very very into WWF at the time.”

He adds that despite being embarrassed by his early performances as Potter he still owes a great debt to to the Potter producers.

“I never wanted to be one of those people that turned round and had to be disparaging about what they had done in the past in order to make a career for themselves in the future.”

The South Bank Show airs on Sky Arts 1 on Thursday at 9.30pm