For "Harry Potter" fans and all would-be wizards and witches, the weekend can not come soon enough.
On Saturday the highly anticipated two-part West End stage play "Harry Potter and the Cursed Child," the official eighth installment in the magic-filled book series, will officially open in London. On the following day, which, no coincidence, is the fictional Harry Potter's birthday (July 31st), the script of the play will be released as the eighth book of the book series. The big "Harry Potter" revival has fans racing to get tickets to see actor Jamie Parker take over as the titular character — the play is set years after the last book with Harry as an adult. But what about the old Harry Potter?
Daniel Radcliffe was chosen to play the "boy who lived" back in 2000 when he was only 11. The idea was that the then-unknown Radcliffe would be able to match the age of the fictional Harry Potter as the franchise progressed. The actor anchored the wildly popular film series for more than a decade from the franchise's debut, 2001's "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone," to its finale, 2011's "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2." However, Radcliffe, now 27, is not quite old enough to play the father of a teenage son, hence the casting of Parker in the new play.
After the conclusion of the film series, Radcliffe largely avoided the spotlight, opting for smaller budget art projects. He appeared as himself in cameo roles in the HBO comedy series "Extras" in 2006 and the Netflix animated comedy "BoJack Horseman" in 2015. He also co-starred with Jon Hamm in the little watched, but critically acclaimed comedy mini-series "A Young Doctor's Handbook." He starred in multiple independent film and stage productions, including the 2012 horror film "The Woman in Black," 2013's "Kill Your Darlings," in which he played poet Allen Ginsberg, the 2007 play "Equus," which drew headlines for Radcliffe's on stage nudity, and the 2011 revival of "How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying."
However, in the last two years Radcliffe has returned to bigger budget projects as he tries to cement himself as a serious, adult actor. In 2015, Radcliffe starred alongside James McAvoy in the literary comedy "Victor Frankenstein" and in 2016 he appears in the blockbuster sequel "Now You See Me 2" and the awards-buzz indie "Swiss Army Man."
In the meantime, Radcliffe has stayed close to his "Harry Potter" co-stars. His most recent reunion with his wizard and witch peers came just a week ago when he joined Bonnie Wright, who played Harry's girlfriend Ginny Weasley in the films, at a showing of "Harry Potter" director Chris Columbus' new play "Privacy" in New York City.