Famous for his role as Draco Malfoy in the Harry Potter movies, Tom Felton captivated the audience the moment he stepped onto the stage and admitted being nervous. “There’s so many people,” he said with a smile. “Be gentle, please.” Felton was witty and sweet, taking the time to thank each fan who asked him a question. With his dark blue shirt setting off his trademark white-blonde hair, he joked that he first auditioned to be Harry, and they dyed his hair brown. He didn’t get the part. Then he tried Ron, and they dyed his hair red. No luck. Then Hermione—but he was let down there, too. It seems the blonde look was just right. When asked what his original hair color is, he said, “Lord knows—I haven’t seen it in so long.”
Although Felton admitted that he hadn’t begun reading the Harry Potter books until the filming of The Chamber of Secrets, he now considers himself “one of the biggest fans on the set.” He enjoys working with the trio (Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint, and Emma Watson), and he pointed out that “we’ve all grown up together.” Asked what he thought about working with renowned professionals like Alan Rickman and Maggie Smith, he admitted that for the first few years he didn’t know who any of them were. “I was only 12,” he said. It took him until the last few years to truly appreciate the honor.
When asked about his favorite scene from The Half Blood Prince, Felton said with a laugh, “standing on Daniel’s nose was awesome. I’ve been waiting years to do that.” He also enjoyed the scene between Draco and Harry in the bathroom, where the special effects were actual explosives rather than the standard blank green screen. Another perk was the confrontation between the characters. “Daniel and I were really looking forward to kicking the hell out of each other.”
Although Draco Malfoy is considered to be a villain, Felton sees Draco and Harry as two sides of a coin. Harry has good influences around him, but Draco has the worst—his father, Lucius, and Bellatrix, for example. “I think there’s some good down inside [Draco] somewhere. A lot … is left unwritten—where Draco stands [at the end] in all the madness.” One drawback to his role is the effect he has on children who visit the set. They’re happy to meet Radcliff, Grimes, and Watson, but Felton “scare[s] the daylights out of children. They hide behind their parents’ legs. It’s a nightmare, but it also means I’m doing something right.”
Fans were excited yet sad to hear that the last Harry Potter movie will finish filming in six to seven months. They were pleased to learn, however, that Felton and the other actors will get to play themselves in the 19-years-later ending. “I’m mega excited to see Daniel as a 40 year old,” he said. “And Emma. And me. I get to have a son.” When asked what he wants to do next, he said, “I want to enjoy these last few months we have together.”
As for the future, Felton has been assured that there’s a job for him at the Harry Potter Theme Park. “Keep your hands and arms inside the car,” he quipped. “I can do this.” Getting serious for a moment, he admitted that acting is what he wants to do for the rest of his life. And with his 22nd birthday just around the corner, fans hope to see much more from this promising young actor.
Debbie Yutko lives near Atlanta with her husband, two children, and two cats. When she isn’t gardening, rescuing homeless kittens, or cramming math formulas into teenagers’ brains, she can be found stringing words together at her computer and dreaming of adventures in far-off lands. She is a lifelong reader of Science Fiction and Fantasy and a veteran attendee of Dragon*Con, where she enjoys attending panels and working with the talented staff of the Daily Dragon.